Adventures In The DC Universe #7
DC Comics (October, 1997)
The Marvel Family “Speak Now…Or Forever Rest In Peace!!”
WRITER: Steve Vance
PENCILER: John Delaney
INKER: Ron Boyd
COLORIST: Bob LeRose
LETTERER: Tim Harkins
ASSISTANT EDITOR: Frank Berrios
EDITOR: KC Carlson
Black Adam’s latest attack in Fawcett City is really a plan to draw out Captain Marvel. Using a device that can mimic Billy calling on the power of Shazam, Doctor Silvana and Black Adam kidnap him, putting a device over his mouth that blocks the magic word. Silvana wants to force Billy to act as his PR and for Captain Marvel and the other Marvels to look the other way as he tries to retake control of Fawcett City. However, as Adam fights Mary Marvel and Captain Marvel Jr., Billy forces himself and Silvana out of a window so that Silvana is forced to restore Captain Marvel with his device. Destroying the device, Captain Marvel takes down Captain Adam, forcing him to transform, and carting the two villains off to jail.
What they got right: Hey, a book-long story. I wish this happened more often. It’s like comic companies in the 90s didn’t think kids would read a full-issue story, which really hurt Marvel’s Power Rangers run (also because it sucked). It’s good to see Captain Marvel called Captain Marvel. The cartoony nature of this series works for the Marvel Family, since it should be lighter in tone than the rest of the DCU. There’s also a reporters convention, which acknowledges the other DC Universe superhero reporters (except for The Question, but he’s in the next issue), including Winston McKinney and Gadsden Graves, the newsfolks that are part of this series. Clark and Lois make a cameo and Jack Ryder (secretly the Creeper) is name dropped.
What they got wrong: This may have been the case in the regular series, but why does Billy get weaker when Mary and Freddy also use the power, yet Black Adam is just as strong as usual?
Recommendation: Remember when superheroes were fun to read about? Here’s a good example and a good way to introduce kids to a better Captain Marvel than the Shazam of the New 52.