“Captain Marvel” #14 brings “The Enemy Within” storyline to a conclusion following chapters in both this title and “Avengers Assemble” as Captain Marvel and the Avengers battle Yon-Rogg, a disgraced Kree warrior with ties to Captain Marvel’s origins.
Kelly Sue DeConnick’s writing is straightforward superhero adventure, even to the point of the villain recognizing his defeat and submitting to the Avengers. The writer tries her level best to give everyone a moment in the sun (or at least a line of dialogue) and mostly succeeds in doing so. It wasn’t until checking the credits that I noticed the complete absence of one character. That one Avenger’s absence in this chapter is an afterthought, however, as DeConnick does include a nice cross-section of the various aspects of Captain Marvel’s life, including my personal favorite supporting character: Lieutenant Trouble. DeConnick manages to wrap up this adventure, utilize all of the pieces on the board in the process, clean up one mess and present an appetizer for what’s to come, all in the span of the standard-issue twenty pages.
DeConnick has worked with a range of artists over the course of this series, but on the “Captain Marvel” installments for “The Enemy Within,” her collaborator has been Scott Hepburn. With a serious nod towards manga, but not a full adoption of it, Hepburn’s style strikes me as less of a fit for the more terrestrial details of the conclusion of “The Enemy Within” than it was during the high adventure of the middle of this madcap affair. Part of that may be due to the artistic assist from Gerardo Sandoval, who steps in to draw up a quartet of pages. Sandoval’s style is extremely exaggerated and his line is much heavier than Hepburn’s. Editors Sana Amanat, Lauren Sankovitch and Steve Wacker recognize this and gave Sandoval larger, louder, more bombastic scenes to depict. Andy Troy’s colors hold the book together nicely, but are much more collaborative to Hepburn’s stylized non-manga exaggerated artwork.
What comes next for DeConnick and crew on this title remains to be seen, but “Captain Marvel” #14 is a dynamic, satisfying but unsettling conclusion to a rewarding crossover between two titles worthy of more recognition. “Infinity” comes in between this adventure and the next chapter in the legacy of Captain Marvel, but so long as DeConnick is onboard, readers can be certain that “Captain Marvel” will continue to be a very readable and enjoyable comic book. DeConnick once joked about the expected lack of longevity for this title, but after reading “Captain Marvel” #14, I’m pretty sure this is simply the end of the first chapter in a very long run. Yes, that is fueled by hope, but as illustrated in the letters page of this issue, hope is a powerful thing and we all have the responsibility to inspire others to hope just a little bit more.