- I'm quite capable of taking care of myself. Without, I might add, resorting to hair pulling!
- -- Mary Batson src
- -- Mary Batson src
The Power of Shazam!
Mary Batson was reintroduced in The Power of Shazam! graphic novel by Jerry Ordway, who also revised the origin of her super-powered alter-ego in issues 3, 4, and 16 of the Power of Shazam ongoing series that followed the graphic novel. Several of the details remain the same, while others are noticeably altered.
Mary and Billy’s parents are archaeologists, and Mary accompanies her parents on an expedition to Egypt while Billy remains at home. Mary’s parents are killed by their associate Theo Adam, who then kidnaps the young girl. Upon Theo Adam's return to the United States, Adam’s sister, a maid named Sarah Primm, learns what Theo has done, and takes Mary into her care. Primm has Mary illegally adopted by Primm’s childless employers, Nick and Nora Bromfield (based on Nick and Nora Charles). As Mary Bromfield, the young girl grows up living an idyllic life in a wealthy family, but continuously dreams of another family with a brother she has never seen.
Meanwhile, Billy, eventually finding himself on the streets, is given the power to become Captain Marvel. He learns that Mary is still alive, but after four years of searching, neither he nor his benefactor, the wizard Shazam, can find the girl. The only thing Billy has to remember Mary by is her favorite toy, a "Tawky Tawny" doll, which was shipped to America with the Batsons’ possessions after their murders.
As a young teenager, Mary enters a regional spelling bee held in Fawcett City and emceed by Billy. After saving Mary from kidnappers twice as Captain Marvel, Billy notices how much Mary Bromfield reminds him of Mary Batson, and has an undercover cop named “Muscles” McGinnis retrieve the girl’s forged adoption record. Learning that Mary is indeed his sister, Billy tries to figure out a way to let Mary know he is her brother. The old "Tawky Tawny" doll suddenly transforms into a full-sized tiger and comes to life a la Hobbes (animated by Lord Satanus, the son of Shazam), and instructs Billy to take the doll to Mary. As Captain Marvel, Billy flies out to the Bromfields’ hometown of Fairfield to deliver the doll and the adoption papers to Mary.
Arriving at the Bromfield estate, Billy delivers the package, but is immediately kidnapped by the thugs who helped Primm forge Mary’s adoption records. Mary takes the package and opens it, discovering the adoption records and the Tawky Tawny doll. Once again, the doll comes to life, and instructs the bewildered girl to say the magic word “Shazam” and save her brother. Mary complies, and is transformed by a bolt of magic lightning into a super-powered doppelganger of her deceased mother. She saves Billy, who transforms into Captain Marvel to help Mary out, but the two Marvels cannot save Sarah Primm, who is murdered by one of the thugs.
In the Power of Shazam! series, Mary's super-powered self is called "Captain Marvel" like her brother, as Jerry Ordway, who wrote the series, felt "Mary Marvel" was an illogical moniker. The female Captain Marvel has the same powers, from the same benefactors, as the male Captain Marvel. In fact, they both draw their power from one finite percentage of Shazam’s power: when they both use it, each of them is only half as strong, half as fast, and half as invulnerable. After the Captains share their power with crippled friend Freddy Freeman so that he can become Captain Marvel, Jr./CM3, the power is split three ways when all three Marvels are active.
Captain (Mary) Marvel’s costume was originally exactly the same as her original Mary Marvel Fawcett costume. Beginning with Power of Shazam! #28, she began wearing a white costume to distinguish herself from her brother.
Super Buddies and Beyond
In 2003, Mary became a member of an offshoot of the Justice League known as the Super Buddies in the Formerly Known as the Justice League miniseries, which juxtaposed her Golden Age-era personality with the modern-day world for comic effect.
While with the Super Buddies, her innocent ways often clashed with Fire, her new roommate. Warrior's opening of a bar next door and making lewd comments to the females of the team only furthered their discomfort.
Mary was later held by demons in hell--where Shazam's power does not work. As ransom, Blue Beetle and Booster Gold were forced to work for 'BeelzeBurger', a fast food joint that was literally from hell. They escaped only to find themselves in a world with twisted and evil versions of themselves. They were all saved by Dr. Fate. Mary and her other Super Buddies teammates were later seen battling the OMACs.
Mary lost her powers in mid-flight as an after-effect of the death of the wizard Shazam, and fell from a height of 3 miles. Mary survived the fall, but ended up in a coma in New York City; Freddy spent all of his money to pay for her care.
Mary emerged from her coma. A note from Freddy Freeman left with a nurse asked her not to look for him. When Mary attempted to call on the power of Shazam, she found that she was still powerless. Madame Xanadu warned Mary not to visit Gotham City, telling her it would be especially dangerous, but she made her way there nonetheless. At the entrance to the subway station where her younger brother first met Shazam, Mary was chased by criminals. As they cornered in the abandoned Kandaqi embassy, her pursuers were attacked by a fully-powered, unhinged Black Adam, who then directed his fury at her. But after nearly choking her, Adam took pity on the powerless Mary and instead gave her his powers. While Adam once again became his mortal alter-ego, Teth-Adam, Mary transformed back into her adult Marvel form, but this time she was wearing a black, form-fitting costume with a skirt and since Adam was not sharing his powers with anyone else when he granted them to Mary, she held all of Black Adam's powers.
Finding Adam's power to be more than she bargained for, Mary went in search of a tutor. She first sought out Zatanna, who took her to Shadowcrest for training. But when Zatanna refused to give her access to any of the magical weapons, Mary began to believe that Zatanna was merely planning to steal her power and attacked her. Zatanna thus banished Mary from Shadowcrest.
Wandering around, Mary ended up in Chung Ling Soo Square, a flea market of magic located in China. When one of the locals attacked her, she was saved by the witch-boy, Klarion Bleak, who offered to help her control her powers in exchange for a small fraction of it. She accepted, but when he tried to steal all her power, she beat him off and left him to the mercies of Chun Ling Soo's locals.
Drawn away by a mysterious voice, she arrived in Ephesus, Turkey, where she found Eclipso, who offered mentorship with seemingly no strings attached. Under her tutelage, Mary went on a campaign of cruelly-twisted justice, punishing terrible crimes in an excessive manner.
Their alliance, however, seemed to break down when Eclipso, hoping to please her master, Darkseid, offered him the young and pretty Mary to serve as his new concubine, reasoning that the two women could always leech Darkseid's arcane knowledge, slay him and take his place. Mary refused to sell herself for more power, beat Eclipso with her own crystal, and fled. Eclipso caught up to her and regained the diamond. Eclipso then departed, leaving Mary alone again. Some time later, Eclipso returned to try and finish her off, but Mary was too strong for her.
Mary experienced a change of heart, and upon realizing that Black Adam's powers were as responsible for her corruption as Eclipso, divested herself of them, feeding the lighting bolt into Eclipso. Both women lost their powers and fell into the ocean. However an unpowered Mary landed on Themysciran soil, where Queen Hippolyta drafted her in the rebellion against Granny Goodness, who was posing as the goddess Athena.
Mary, Holly Robinson and Harley Quinn managed to reveal Granny's deception, and the trio followed her to Apokolips. After escaping the Female Furies, Mary started to hear the voices of the gods. The group managed to free the gods from an Apokaliptan chamber, and Mary Marvel's powers and a new variation of her classic costume, now with a gray lightning bolt and long sleeves, were restored.
After journeying with the Challengers to Earth-51 and witnessing the Great Disaster occurring there, Mary finally returns home to find Darkseid waiting for her. Reminding her of how strong she felt using Black Adam's powers, he returns them to her, restoring her black costume. She then confronts Donna Troy, Kyle Rayner, Forager, and Jimmy Olsen, seizing Jimmy to take him back to Darkseid. When Donna questions Mary's use of the powers, Mary insists that she is not evil, merely "driven". After Darkseid's defeat, Mary returns to Black Adam, asking to be a part of a new Black Marvel Family. Adam refuses her, and she decides to become a solo superheroine.
Still under the dark influence of Darkseid, Mary was corrupted and turned into a vessel for one of Darkseid's servants. She was in Blüdhaven just before the Apokolitian forces spread the Anti-Life Equation worldwide, and she was instrumental in turning Wonder Woman into a "plague vector" for a new strain of the Morticoccus virus.
During the superhero's attack on Bludhaven, she was part of the force that defended Darkseid's fortress. She clashed with Freddy, Tawky Tawny, and Black Adam. Almost immediately, Adam tried to kill her, telling Freddy that it was not Mary who was in control — just "a leering old man" as Adam put it. As the battle continued, Mary focused on Supergirl, flying across the city and damaging the remaining buildings. Finally, Freddy managed to grab ahold of Mary and shouted "Shazam", transforming them both back to normal and suppressing or removing DeSaad's influence from Mary. She broke down crying over what she had done, as Freddy reassured her that it wasn't her fault.
Desiring the power of the Marvels, Blaze strikes a deal with Mary. She will return Mary's powers, provided that she kills Freddy Freeman. Mary, still desperate for her power, agrees, but discusses it with Freddy, and they double cross Blaze. After Blaze is sent back to Hell, Billy, Mary and Freddy continue their search for their powers.
This section of the history takes place during Flashpoint, a massive crossover event set in an alternate timeline to the mainstream DCU. History was completely changed when Professor Zoom finally found a way to erase his nemesis the Flash without harming his own legacy.
In this universe Mary Batson never becomes Captain Marvel, instead she along with five other children who were caught on a subway car that took them to the Rock of Eternity, and The Wizard Shazam instead grants the power to six children each with a different aspect of the power of Captain Marvel. An Asian-American boy named Eugene Choi possesses the wisdom of Solomon, an overweight Latino boy named Pedro Peña possesses the strength of Hercules, Mary Batson possesses the stamina of Atlas, Freddy Freeman possesses the power of Zeus, Billy Batson possesses the courage of Achilles, and an African-American girl named Darla Dudley possesses the speed of Mercury. Tawky Tawny is also shown with them on a leash held by Pedro. By saying the wizards name "Shazam" together, the six children possess the collective ability to turn into Captain Thunder, this timeline's version of Captain Marvel, who has a scarred face which he claims is due to Wonder Woman, who in this timeline is a villain.
Cyborg, the Flash, Batman, Enchantress and Element Woman meet with the group of children known as S.H.A.Z.A.M. and ask for their help. Billy is swayed to the heroes' cause after he uses his abilities to see what the timeline is supposed to be like while stabilizing the Flash's memories, as they were adjusting to the current timeline. Billy convinces Eugene and the other children to help. They come together and shout "Shazam" and they merge into Captain Thunder. The heroes and Captain Thunder travel to what is left of Europe to stop the war between the Atlantean and the Amazons. Captain Thunder fights with the Amazon leader Wonder Woman to a draw before being transformed back into the six children by Enchantress, who is revealed to be a traitor. Before the kids can reform Captain Thunder, Billy is stabbed by the Penthesileia one of the Amazons killing the young boy.
Powers and AbilitiesEdit
- Divine Empowerment - All of the powers granted collection of six by gods and figures of legend either directly or through Shazam.
- Accelerated Healing
- Clairvoyance: The ability to understand situations from many angles, including future and past consequences with superhuman clarity and accuracy.
- Divine Grace: Innate luck and divine guidance that allows finesse in actions and dealings with others.
- Eidetic Memory
- Magic Resistance
- Enhanced Intellect: Intellect and wisdom are heightened to superhuman levels. This also provides great or comprehensive knowledge in many areas, including:
- Flight: The ability to hover or soar at high speed through an act of sheer will.
- Healing: The ability to use the transformative lightning to heal others or oneself instantly.
- Indomitable Will: An incredible amount of willpower that allows perseverance in overwhelming odds and seemingly unbeatable situations.
- Self-Sustenance: The ability to survive without sleep, food, water, or air.
- Superhuman Speed: The ability to run or fly at incredible rates of speed.
- Superhuman Reflexes
- Superhuman Agility
- Superhuman Stamina
- Superhuman Strength
- Teleportation: The ability to access the Rock of Eternity.
- Transformation: The ability to transform from a mortal to the entity empowered by the six.
- Vulnerability to Magic: As one of the Marvels, Mary Marvel is weak to higher order magic; specifically, the magic lightning that forces her to return to her human form.
- Mary Marvel's historical first appearance is in Captain Marvel Adventures #18. Her first appearance in current continuity is in the Power of Shazam graphic novel.
- During her time in Power of Shazam, Mary is also exclusively called Captain Marvel. This was the decision of the series' writer and sometimes artist Jerry Ordway. This was also the cause of Captain Marvel, Junior's alias CM3.
- Mary Batson is lactose-intolerant.
- During the events of Final Crisis, Mary was transformed by the power of Darkseid's Omega Effect into an extremely powerful vessel for the New God Desaad. While transformed, Mary was older, dressed in a dominatrix outfit, had pink pig tails and an otherwise shaved head, as well as claws for hands that were strong enough to slice through a transformed Freddy Freeman's chest and face. She stated that she had "New Gods" and a new "Dirty Magic Word" to transform. Mary's powers appeared to be largely the same as both her original Mary Marvel and her Black Adam fueled powers, but at even greater levels. She was able to fight the likes of Supergirl, Wonder Woman, and Captain Marvel without too much trouble. It appears that this form of Mary is fueled by Anti-Life rather than magic.
- Mary Batson is traditionally a Republican.
- Countdown (Volume 1)
- Power of Shazam (Volume 1)
- Formerly Known as the Justice League
- I Can't Believe It's Not the Justice League
- 172 Appearances of Mary Batson (New Earth)
- 52 Images featuring Mary Batson (New Earth)
- 9 Quotations by or about Mary Batson (New Earth)
- Character Gallery: Mary Batson (New Earth)
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|Marvel Family member |
This character is or was a member of the Marvel Family in any of its various incarnations, and an ally of Captain Marvel and the Wizard Shazam. This template will categorize articles that include it into the category "Marvel Family members."
|Justice League member|
This character is or was a member of the Justice League of America, or the Justice League in any of its various incarnations, sworn by a duty to act as guardians of America and the world by using their skills and/or superpowers to protect Earth from both interstellar and domestic threats.
This is an in-universe article with out-of-universe material.