|Marvel Cinematic Universe character|
|First appearance||Captain Marvel (2019)|
Carol Danvers is a fictional character portrayed by Brie Larson in the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) film franchise—based on the Marvel Comics character of the same name—commonly known by her alter ego, Captain Marvel. In the films, Danvers is a former U.S. Air Force fighter pilot who was given superhuman abilities when a light-speed engine test went wrong and she was exposed to the cosmic energy of the Tesseract and subsequently transformed into a Human-Kree hybrid via blood transfusion.
As of April 2021[update], the character has appeared in two films, Captain Marvel and Avengers: Endgame, and her voice was heard in an episode of WandaVision. Danvers will return in the upcoming film The Marvels, as well as the animated Disney+ series What If...?.
Concept, creation and casting
Danvers originated as a comic book character in Marvel Super-Heroes #13 (March 1968) by writer Roy Thomas and artist Gene Colan. In the story, she is an officer in the United States Air Force and Security Chief of a restricted military base, where Danvers meets Dr. Walter Lawson, the human alias of alien Kree hero Captain Marvel. In a later story, Danvers is caught in the explosion of a Kree device after trying to get close to Captain Marvel. Although Captain Marvel manages to save her life, Danvers sustains serious injuries, later resurfacing with superhuman abilities and becoming the hero Ms. Marvel (created by writer Gerry Conway and artist John Buscema) in a self-titled series in January 1977, at first written by Gerry Conway and later by Chris Claremont. In the series, it is revealed that the energy exposure from the explosion of a device called the "Psyche-Magnetron" caused Danvers's genetic structure to meld with Captain Marvel's, effectively turning her into a human-Kree hybrid.
After her transformation as Ms. Marvel, Danvers as a character went through several developments throughout the years before becoming Captain Marvel. In the 1980s Danvers' stories are entangled with the mutants, which started when Rogue steals her powers and memories. In Uncanny X-Men series by Chris Claremont and Dave Cockrum, Danvers forgoes her identity as Ms. Marvel and subsequently uses the name Binary after being experimented by the alien race the Brood which gives her the ability to generate the power of a star. However, in the 1990s Danvers loses the majority of her Binary power and regain her original power as Ms. Marvel. Writer Kurt Busiek and artist George Pérez then redefines her as Warbird as she joins the Avengers and fight against Kang the Conqueror. Afterwards, Danvers as Warbird continues to appear in major 2000s storylines such as, House of M, Civil War and Secret Invasion. During the Dark Reign storyline, Danvers returns as Ms. Marvel and fights against her imposter created by Norman Osborn.
After her introduction, Carol Danvers was meant to be an icon of feminist movement as shown by her superhero name and being portrayed as a strong character. However, some of her stories involved her being kidnapped and raped, alcoholism, and getting her power stolen. Although her stories have not shown an ideal struggle of a hero, her continuous appearances with Marvel's prominent characters throughout the decades has turned Danvers into a premier heroine for the publisher. In 2010s, Danvers eventually assumed the title Captain Marvel in the series by Kelly Sue DeConnick with a redesigned costume closer to a flight suit rather than the classic female superhero appearance. She also rejoined the flagship Avengers series New Avengers and was involved in major storylines such as the 2015 Secret Wars and 2016 Civil War II where she leads the side who opposed Iron Man's view of against stopping crime before it happens.
Marvel Studios President Kevin Feige said Larson was cast because of her ability to balance the character's vast powers with her humanity. Due to concern that Larson (who was 26 when she was cast) was too young to portray an accomplished airman, screenwriter Nicole Perlman consulted with the Air Force, who said it was possible for someone to excel between the ages of 28 and 34.
In the MCU, Danvers is an ex-U.S. Air Force fighter pilot and member of an elite Kree military unit called Starforce. She was imbued with superhuman strength, energy projection, and flight after exposure to Tesseract energy. Larson described Danvers as a "believer in truth and justice" and a "bridge between Earth and space", who must balance her unemotional Kree side with her "flawed" human half. Larson also called Danvers aggressive, quick-tempered, and invasive—attributes that help her in a fight but prove to be character flaws.
Brie Larson trained for nine months for the role, learning judo, boxing, and wrestling. She also visited Nellis Air Force Base and met with active duty airmen, including Brigadier General Jeannie Leavitt and Thunderbirds pilot Major Stephen Del Bagno, in preparation for the role. Carol Danvers is portrayed as a thirteen-year-old by Mckenna Grace, and as a six-year-old by London Fuller.
In Avengers: Endgame, screenwriter Christopher Markus stated that Danvers's powers are on a scale that has not previously existed in the MCU and likened her personality to Steve Rogers, "which is sort of a person who's right and knows they're right and doesn't really want to hear it when you tell them they're wrong". Danvers has little screen time in the film, which McFeely reasoned as "not the story we're trying to tell—it's the original Avengers dealing with loss and coming to a conclusion, and she's the new, fresh blood." Larson filmed her scenes for Endgame before beginning work on her solo film Captain Marvel (2019), which was released first. Captain Marvel directors Anna Boden and Ryan Fleck were present for the filming of her scenes in Endgame and gave Danvers's characterization in the film their blessing.
Fictional character biography
Origin and Kree–Skrull War
In 1995, on the Kree Empire's capital planet of Hala, Danvers, known as 'Vers', suffers from amnesia and recurring nightmares involving an older woman, particularly as a former Air Force test pilot who acquired cosmic energy force powers from the Tesseract after an explosion that wiped out her memory. The Kree decide to use her as a weapon against the Skrulls. Yon-Rogg, her mentor and commander, trains her to control her abilities while the Supreme Intelligence, the artificial intelligence that rules the Kree, urges her to keep her emotions in check. During a mission to rescue an undercover operative infiltrating a group of Skrulls, Vers is captured by Skrull commander Talos. A probe of Vers's memories leads them to Earth. Vers escapes and crash-lands in Los Angeles. Her presence attracts S.H.I.E.L.D. agents Nick Fury and Phil Coulson, whose investigation is interrupted by a Skrull attack. Vers and Fury later go to the Project Pegasus installation at a U.S. Air Force base. They discover Vers was a pilot presumed to have died in 1989 while testing an experimental light-speed engine designed by Dr. Wendy Lawson, whom Vers recognizes as the woman from her nightmares. They fly to Louisiana to meet former pilot Maria Rambeau, the last person to see Vers and Lawson alive.
Rambeau and her daughter Monica reveal that Vers is Carol Danvers, who was once like family to them. Talos, arriving unarmed, explains that the Skrulls are refugees searching for a new home and that Lawson was Mar-Vell, a renegade Kree scientist helping them. Talos plays a recovered recording from Lawson's jet, prompting Danvers to remember the crash, whereby she absorbed the energy from the ensuing explosion, gaining powers but losing her memory.
Danvers, Talos, Fury, and Rambeau locate Lawson's cloaked laboratory orbiting Earth, where Lawson hid several Skrulls, including Talos' family, and the Tesseract, the power source of Lawson's engine. There, Danvers is captured by Starforce and interfaces with the Supreme Intelligence. Danvers removes the Kree implant that suppressed her powers during their conversation, allowing her to reach her full potential. In the subsequent battle, Fury retrieves Goose, who is revealed to be an alien Flerken. Goose swallows the Tesseract and scratches Fury, blinding his left eye. Danvers destroys a Kree bomber, forcing Kree officer Ronan the Accuser and his squadron to retreat before overpowering Yon-Rogg on Earth and sending him back to Hala with a warning to the Supreme Intelligence.
Danvers departs to help the Skrulls find a new homeworld, leaving Fury a modified pager to contact her in an emergency. Meanwhile, Fury drafts an initiative to locate heroes like Danvers.
In 2018, Danvers is summoned via the pager by Fury during the Blip.[b] The activated pager is later monitored by the Avengers when Danvers returns to Earth. She then rescues the stranded Tony Stark and Nebula from aimlessly drifting in the Benatar following their defeat by Thanos on his home planet Titan. She accompanies Bruce Banner, Nebula, James Rhodes, Rocket, Steve Rogers, Natasha Romanoff, and Thor in hunting down Thanos after his location is revealed. Danvers assists in subduing Thanos when he reveals that he has destroyed the Infinity Stones as to prevent his mission from being undone. Danvers watches as Thor decapitates Thanos.
In 2023, she has joined the Avengers under the leadership of Romanoff and is helping to quash post-Blip chaos across the universe. When the Avengers and their allies are overwhelmed by a bombardment reigned down from the alternate timeline Thanos' ship, Danvers arrives and destroys it. She then overpowers Thanos until he uses the Power Stone against her. She later reunites with Fury at Tony Stark's funeral.
Differences from the comics
This section needs additional citations for verification. (May 2021)
In the comics, Carol goes by numerous superhero names before becoming Captain Marvel with her first and most prominent name being Ms. Marvel. Furthermore, Carol Danvers received her powers through an exposure from an explosion of a Kree device called the "Psyche-Magnetron" while assisting Mar-Vell. The explosion caused her to mutate and becoming a human-Kree hybrid. In the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) films, Carol received her powers from an energy exposure of an explosion when she destroyed a light-speed engine created by Mar-Vell. However, the energy comes from the Tesseract that housed one of the Infinity Stones, the Space Stone. She becomes a human-Kree hybrid much later, when Yon-Rogg, a Kree officer, takes her to Hala and transfused his blood to her.
In the MCU, Carol's activities on Earth in 1995 and her call sign, "Avenger", are the inspirations for Nick Fury's Avengers Initiative that created the Avengers. Meanwhile, in the comics, the Avengers was created in response to Loki's invasion and was later named by the Wasp.
Jacob Stalworthy of The Independent praised the character, opining that the character had the potential to "become one of the best" MCU characters. However, the character has also been the target of negative attention due to Brie Larson's perceived feminism. Additionally, some have been critical of the character suffering from the "Superman problem", calling her "overpowered" and "unrelatable", with concerns raised over how to convincingly write the character into established MCU plotlines without turning her into a Mary Sue.
Awards and nominations
|Award||Date of ceremony||Category||Recipient(s)||Result||Ref(s)|
|MTV Movie & TV Awards||June 17, 2019||Best Hero||Brie Larson||Nominated|||
|Best Fight||Brie Larson vs. Gemma Chan||Won|
|National Film & TV Awards||December 3, 2019||Best Actress||Brie Larson||Nominated|||
|Nickelodeon Kids' Choice Awards||May 2, 2020|
|Favorite Movie Actress||Brie Larson||Nominated|||
|People's Choice Awards||November 10, 2019||Female Movie Star of 2019||Brie Larson||Nominated|||
|Action Movie Star of 2019||Brie Larson||Nominated|
|Saturn Awards||September 13, 2019||Best Actress||Brie Larson||Nominated|||
|Teen Choice Awards||August 11, 2019||Choice Action Movie Actress||Brie Larson||Nominated|||
- Roy Thomas (w), Gene Colan (a). Marvel Super-Heroes 13 (March 1968), Marvel Comics
- Captain Marvel #1 (May 1968). Marvel Comics (New York).
- Captain Marvel #18 (Nov. 1969). Marvel Comics (New York).
- Ms. Marvel #1–23 (Jan. 1977 – April 1979). Marvel Comics (New York).
- Avengers Annual #10 (1981). Marvel Comics (New York).
- Uncanny X-Men #158 (June 1982). Marvel Comics (New York).
- Quasar vol. 1, #34 (May, 1992). Marvel Comics (New York).
- Avengers vol. 3 #41–54 (June 2001 – July 2002). Marvel Comics (New York).
- "War of the Marvels" storyline in Ms. Marvel vol. 2, #41–47 (Nov. 2009 – Jan. 2010). Marvel Comics (New York).
- Weeler, Andrew (November 10, 2014). "Oh Captain My Captain: How Carol Danvers Became Marvel's Biggest Female Hero". Comics Alliance. Archived from the original on December 9, 2014. Retrieved December 7, 2014.
- White, Brett (July 9, 2014). "Marvel Women of the 70: Ms. Marvel". Marvel.com. Archived from the original on July 24, 2017. Retrieved December 7, 2014.
- Andy Serwin (January 2010). Wizard #220, page 23.
- Sacks, Ethan (January 10, 2016). "Exclusive: Inside Marvel's secret editorial retreat for 'Civil War II' as publisher plans death of major character". New York Daily News. Retrieved January 12, 2016.
- Lang, Brent (November 22, 2016). "Marvel's Kevin Feige on 'Spider-Man's' Future and Why Brie Larson Was Perfect for 'Captain Marvel'". Variety. Archived from the original on November 22, 2016. Retrieved November 22, 2016.
- Greene, Jamie (February 7, 2017). "Episode 115: Nicole Perlman". The Great Big Beautiful Podcast (Podcast). Event occurs at 31:48. Archived from the original on February 15, 2017. Retrieved February 17, 2017 – via GeekDad. Relevant transcriptions from Comic Book Resources(Archive)
- Coggan, Devan (September 5, 2018). "Brie Larson talks suiting up as the 'flawed' but 'empowering' hero in Captain Marvel". Entertainment Weekly. Archived from the original on September 6, 2018. Retrieved September 6, 2018.
- Pulliam-Moore, Charles (March 14, 2019). "The Origins of Captain Marvel's Powers Raise Some Interesting Questions About the Larger MCU". io9. Archived from the original on March 14, 2019. Retrieved November 9, 2019.
- Tanswell, Adam (April 7, 2017). "The New Recruit". SciFiNow. No. 131. Kelsey Publishing. p. 13.
- Coggan, Devan (September 5, 2018). "Brie Larson takes flight as Captain Marvel on this week's EW cover". Entertainment Weekly. Archived from the original on September 6, 2018. Retrieved September 5, 2018.
- Diaz, Jaleesa Lashay (June 14, 2018). "Brie Larson Says She Learned Her Own Strength Playing 'Captain Marvel' Role". Variety. Archived from the original on June 15, 2018. Retrieved June 14, 2018.
- Dinh, Christine (March 26, 2018). "Production Underway on Marvel Studios' 'Captain Marvel'". Marvel.com. Archived from the original on March 26, 2018. Retrieved March 26, 2018.
- Iervolino, Stephen (April 6, 2018). "Marvel Studios, Brie Larson mourn death of pilot who consulted on 'Captain Marvel'". ABC News. Archived from the original on April 6, 2018. Retrieved April 6, 2018.
- Romano, Nick (January 19, 2018). "Brie Larson researches Captain Marvel role at Air Force base". Entertainment Weekly. Archived from the original on January 19, 2018. Retrieved January 19, 2018.
- Radish, Christina (September 5, 2018). "McKenna Grace on 'The Bad Seed' Series and Playing Young Captain Marvel". Collider. Archived from the original on September 6, 2018. Retrieved September 5, 2018.
- "Captain Marvel" (PDF). www.wdsmediafile.com. Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures. Archived from the original (PDF) on March 9, 2019. Retrieved March 5, 2019.
- Keyes, Rob (March 23, 2018). "Avengers 4 Writers Had Fun With Captain Marvel's Unprecedented Power Level". Screen Rant. Archived from the original on March 23, 2018. Retrieved March 23, 2018.
- Itzkoff, Dave (April 29, 2019). "'Avengers: Endgame': The Screenwriters Answer Every Question You Might Have". The New York Times. Archived from the original on May 14, 2019. Retrieved May 15, 2019.
- Lussier, Germain (April 9, 2019). "Why Captain Marvel Has on More Make-Up in Endgame Than Her Solo Movie". io9. Archived from the original on April 9, 2019. Retrieved April 11, 2019.
- Ms. Marvel #1–23 (Jan. 1977 – April 1979). Marvel Comics (New York).
- Lee, Stan (w), Kirby, Jack (p), Ayers, Dick (i). "The Coming of the Avengers" The Avengers 1 (Sep 1963), Marvel Comics
- "Every Avengers character ranked from worst to best". The Independent. August 17, 2019. Retrieved April 2, 2020.
- "Marvel: Why Is 'Captain Marvel' So Disliked?". cheatsheet.com. Retrieved April 2, 2020.
- "Why is Brie Larson one of the most hated actors in Marvel Cinematic Universe?". thenews.com.pk. The News International. September 1, 2020. Retrieved April 2, 2020.
- Di Placido, Dani (23 January 2020). "'Captain Marvel 2' Needs To Solve The Character's 'Superman' Problem". Forbes. Retrieved 2 April 2021.
- Evangelista, Chris (2 May 2019). "'Avengers: Endgame' Suggests the MCU Has a Problem With Captain Marvel's Power". slashfilm.com. SlashFilm. Retrieved 2 April 2021.
- Nickolai, Nate (June 17, 2019). "MTV Movie & TV Awards Winners: The Complete List". Variety. Archived from the original on June 18, 2019. Retrieved June 17, 2019.
- Wakeling, Naomi (October 21, 2019). "Nominations for the 2nd annual National Film & TV Awards are announced". National Film Academy. Archived from the original on October 22, 2019. Retrieved November 18, 2019.
- Dupre, Elyse (May 2, 2020). "Nickelodeon Kids' Choice Awards 2020 Winners: The Complete List". E! Online. Archived from the original on May 3, 2020. Retrieved May 2, 2020.
- Nordyke, Kimberly; Howard, Annie (November 10, 2019). "People's Choice Awards: 'Avengers: Endgame' Named Best Movie". The Hollywood Reporter. Archived from the original on November 11, 2019. Retrieved November 11, 2019.
- "The 45th Annual Saturn Awards Nominations" (PDF). Saturn Awards. Archived from the original (PDF) on July 15, 2019. Retrieved July 15, 2019.
- Yang, Rachel (August 11, 2019). "Teen Choice Awards 2019: See the full list of winners and nominees". Entertainment Weekly. Archived from the original on February 7, 2021. Retrieved February 7, 2021.