In “Captain Marvel” #6, Kelly Sue DeConnick and Emma Rios wrap up the title’s first storyline, with the purpose of the time-travelling pattern revealed as Captain Marvel finds herself fighting to keep her own existence within the universe. While it’s not a bad issue, it feels a little sudden and not quite as smooth a transition from the earlier chapters to have a strong impact.
I think part of the problem is that the earlier issues seemed less concerned with, “Why is Captain Marvel time-travelling?” and more with, “What does she find in the past?” It was a smart move on DeConnick’s part, because it’s not like time travel is a rare, never-before-seen process within the Marvel Universe. Instead it felt like the focus was on the people that she interacted with in the past, and through that helped readers get a handle on her character.
With this final part of the story, though, we’ve jumped back to Carol Danvers’ origin story, and with it see a struggle to wipe her out of the timeline. Unfortunately, her clash feels like it came out of the blue and doesn’t quite connect with what we’ve seen up until now. The motive of the person trying to take the Captain Marvel powers feels ill-defined, and it’s a shame because the earlier chapters felt much more robust in terms of characterization. It’s not a bad script, but it feels like we’re missing a piece somewhere along the way.
Emma Rios stepped in to pencil “Captain Marvel” #5-6, and her style is quite different than regular series artist Dexter Soy. I’ve liked Rios’s in the past, but this substitution (allowing for two issues in the month of October) feels a little odd. Unlike the full-figured, almost-painted look that Soy brought to the pages, Rios draws with thin, flowing lines that feels like it’s in the same school that artists like Paul Pope pull from. It’s a style that lends itself well to reaction shots, although the action sequences occasionally look a little jumbled. It’s the sequences where people or objects are flying, though, that sold me as Rios being a good artist for this kind of title. There’s so much energy and wonder packed into those scenes that I found myself completely sold. It’s a shame that the inevitable collection will have two chapters looking radically different than the first four, though.
“Captain Marvel” #6 feels like an all right conclusion to the first big storyline for the title. Both in terms of story structure and look, though, it feels a bit divorced from what happened earlier, and that’s a shame. I want this book to be a huge hit, and while I think there’s still the potential to get there, future stories will need a slightly more cohesive conclusion. This book should be great, not just good.