As I first posted about back in October, DC will begin running ten page Curse of Shazam stories in Justice League of America, beginning in March. The stories, scripted by Geoff Johns and drawn by Gary Frank, will be used to reboot Shazam (no longer called Captain Marvel) and re-introduce him into the the new DC Universe. In an effort to give people a sampling of what to expect, DC has released two pages of preview art. As you can imagine, the art doesn’t reveal too much of anything, including what this new Shazam will actually look like. Take a look…
As I mentioned above, Captain Marvel will now be called Shazam. Why? Well, probably mostly due to the legal difficulties with owning and operating a character that’s named after your biggest rival in the comics industry. Additionally, a lot of people already refer to Captain Marvel as “Shazam”, thinking that was actually the character’s name. In a recent interview given to Newsarama, this is what Geoff Johns (who is also DC’s Chief Creative Officer) had to say about the name change…
“Well, there are a lot of reasons for the change. One is that everybody thinks he’s called Shazam already, outside of comics. It’s also, for all sorts of reasons, calling him Shazam just made sense for us. And, you know, every comic book he’s in right now has Shazam on the cover. So I think just by embracing that and calling him Shazam.
And you’ll see it actually make sense in story, why he’s called Shazam rather than Captain Marvel. That’s just what he’s going to be called for us from now on.”
Taking things a bit further, Johns also offered some thoughts on what the “core” of the Shazam character and story represents, saying…
“Well, the core of the character, obviously, is surrogate family. I mean, it’s easy. That’s what he’s all about. The same with wish fulfillment. And tied into his wish fulfillment, even if he won’t admit it, is a surrogate family.
But it’s making the best of every situation you’re in. I think it’s something that’s at the core. That’s what Billy Batson, that’s what Shazam really allows him to do, is you’ve got to make the best of the situation that you’re in.
But if you want a log line that sells the book or sums up the character, you’ll see it in the little origin box in the first story.”
The first Curse of Shazam story will begin running as a ten page backup to Justice League of America in March. No word on how many installments of Shazam DC has planned, but expect, at some point, for the character to bust out of the pages of JLA and get his own book. As I learn more about DC’s Curse of Shazam, I’ll be sure to pass it along.
Filed Under: Comic Books