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Captain Marvel Writer Teases A New Villain And A Huge Disaster - Exclusive Interview

Contains spoilers for "Captain Marvel" #1 by Alyssa Wong and Jan Bazaldua

Carol Danvers is getting a brand-new ongoing series from Marvel Comics that will see Captain Marvel link up with the Nega-Bands, take on a new villain, and jumpstart exciting cosmic adventures with some familiar and new faces along the way. 

The most recent ongoing "Captain Marvel" series from Kelly Thompson, Carmen Carnero, Lee Garbett, Javier Pina, and other artists proved to be one of Marvel's most consistent and successful runs, spanning 50 issues before concluding in July. Captain Marvel is also amid a current miniseries, "Captain Marvel: Dark Tempest" from Ann Nocenti and Paolo Villanelli, and currently leads the Avengers in Jed MacKay and C.F. Villa's "Avengers" ongoing comic. Now, Carol is back in her own starring ongoing from Alyssa Wong ("Deadpool") and Jan Bazaldua ("Legion of X") that will set a new status quo for the hero and her closest allies and foes. We spoke with Wong about what readers can expect from the comic and got some insight into the two new characters who will debut in the series.

Alyssa Wong on taking over one of Marvel's most beloved books

How did this opportunity come to be, and how exciting is it to be tackling a "Captain Marvel" ongoing, following in the footsteps of some of Marvel's most iconic talents on the book?

It's so exciting. Editor Sarah Brunstad contacted me to ask if I'd like to write "Captain Marvel," and of course, I said yes! There are definitely some big "Captain Marvel" shoes to fill, but one of the best pieces of advice I've ever gotten is that people are asking for your take on a character, not someone else's. No one will ever write Kelly Thompson's "Captain Marvel" better than Kelly Thompson — nor should they try. I approach every run as something that honors what came before it while welcoming in new readers. It's a tricky balance, but it's one I enjoy sussing out.

Was it daunting following Kelly Thompson's run on the book? It was such a consistently excellent run.

It's a fantastic run! It lives in my head rent-free. I have so much admiration for Kelly and her work. It's always daunting to pick up a new book and character, especially an iconic run spotlighting a fan favorite like Carol. But Kelly has been lovely and encouraging, and my team is very supportive, so I feel like I'm walking into this with friends at my back.

What makes Captain Marvel such a beloved hero? Despite having larger-than-life powers, her humanity has connected with readers.

This is such a tricky question because she means so much to many people, but she means something different to everyone. Since we announced the run, I've met lots of dedicated Captain Marvel fans, including one person who has a whole tattoo sleeve featuring her. (Yes, you — you know who you are!) It's been incredible to see.

What I love about Carol is that she's brave, principled, and stubborn. I think of her as an unstoppable force and an immovable object. If she believes something needs to be done, she'll get it done, no matter what. I love characters who will put everything on the line, including themselves, in order to accomplish what they feel they need to. Playing with that tension is fun.

What makes Jan Bazaldua the perfect artist for this book?

Jan's incredible. Her art's stunning, and I'm excited to be working with a Stormbreaker. I can't wait for you to see this book. It's a treat for the eyes.

Carol's new costume from Jen Bartel originally debuted at the Hellfire Gala. Did you see the costume and decide to use it on a more regular basis, or was that always the plan?

This was actually Sarah's idea. I was 100% on board as soon as she mentioned it. It's brilliant. I'm a huge fan of Jen Bartel's work in general, and that Hellfire Gala outfit is a stunner. Knowing she was on board to design us a new look for Carol was a big draw for me.

Captain Marvel will face a new villain

This comic will see the introduction of two new characters, Yuna and the Omen. What can you say about them, and how will they play a role in this book?

Since the Nega-Bands are involved in this story, we wanted to pair Carol with a civilian character in classic Mar-Vell and Rick Jones style. I also wanted to do something a little different from Carol and Kamala's mentor-mentee relationship; it's so sweet and character-defining for both of them, and I want to give that relationship room to exist without piggybacking on it.

This is a classic "handcuffed to your opposite and forced to work together" story. Yuna Yang is a Korean-Chinese American college student and recreational cat burglar who steals magical items. She's mischievous, playful, and morally flexible on a good day. Linking the leader of the Avengers to a chill criminal creates a fun sense of friction, and I'm enjoying writing their dynamic. Their priorities are, unsurprisingly, very different.

The Omen is a villain with strange, corruptive powers linked to a larger cosmic entity, the Undone. She can create portals and absorb energy, which makes her an interesting enemy for Carol to face. She's very spooky, but there's also an unsettling playfulness to her. Her presence on Earth heralds a greater incoming disaster ... but that's all I can tease for now. One last thing: Yuna and the Omen may be more connected than anyone suspects.

This book is teased as establishing a new status quo for Carol. Can we still expect her usual supporting cast to appear?

This is tricky to answer without spoilers, but ... definitely expect some familiar faces. They might not be the ones you're expecting.

What's it like to explore the cosmic side of the Marvel Universe after your recent run on "Deadpool"? You have experience in a different cosmic book, "Star Wars: Doctor Aphra," but will this be your most wide-ranging cosmic book on the Marvel side?

This is definitely my most cosmic-scale Marvel book. I love the chance to get weird with it. We're going interdimensional; we're encountering powers that far outstrip humanity. For me, the big cornerstone of cosmic horror is realizing that there are things out there that we can't comprehend and are so much more powerful than we are, and having to completely rearrange our understanding of our place in the universe. Not that this run is necessarily cosmic horror, but horror always seems to creep into every story I write, so I have a feeling we'll be seeing some shades of that.

Is there anything you haven't said or revealed about the comic that you'd like to say here?

I'm just thrilled I'm getting the chance to write this book. I hope you enjoy it!

Check out the main cover for "Captain Marvel" #1 by artist Stephen Segovia, followed by the accompanying text for the issue. The comic releases on October 25, 2023.

"HIGHEST, FURTHEST, FASTEST! The Captain gets a permanent glow-up designed by superstar artist Jen Bartel! And that's not all that's changed. Brand-new look — brand-new creative team — and a brand-new status quo. Carol Danvers is one of the powerhouses of the Marvel Universe, a woman capable of harnessing the energy of the sun. So if you're coming for Earth? She's the first one you take off the board. Someone's figured out how to do just that. Introducing a new supporting cast and villains both beloved and dangerously fresh, Alyssa Wong and Jan Bazaldua's exhilarating series kicks off here!"

This interview has been edited for clarity.