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Captain Marvel #32: Review

May 1974
Mike Friedrich, Jim Starlin

Story Name:

Thanos the insane god

Review & Comments

4.5 stars

Captain Marvel #32 Review by (December 17, 2013)
The price goes up from 20¢ to 25¢ with this issue. Mike Friedrich returns as co-scripter for this 1 issue. The previous origin for Drax in Iron Man #55 started with his creation by Kronos. Moondragon's origin in Daredevil #105 featured the car crash, and expanded on her upbringing on Titan. But she didn't know her Earthly name. And we obviously didn't know any connection to Drax. In that version the crash wasn't caused by Thanos, but accidentally by peaceful Titanians who took her home with them motivated by responsibility - to Titan where she was brought up with young Thanos. But this obviously no longer fits with grown Thanos causing the crash.


Synopsis / Summary / Plot

Captain Marvel #32 Synopsis by Rob Johnson
Image from Captain Marvel #32
Captain Marvel, Drax, Eros, Iron Man, Mentor and Moondragon are in the observatory on Titan, where Thanos has just used the Cosmic Cube to transform into a god-like being. Now they face a large image of his head manifested outside the observatory. Drax the Destroyer, created by Kronos specifically to oppose Thanos, can do naught but follow his design and futilely attack the head with hand-blasts. As Thanos replies with devastating force, the others escape the observatory before it is destroyed.

Moondragon is rendered unconscious by flying debris, and Mentor stays to look after her. Mar-Vell leads the other 2 towards the Hall of Science, but Eros is captured by vegetation animated by Thanos. So only Iron Man makes it to their destination with CM. They figure that Thanos hasn't got used to his god-powers yet, and his mortal mind is only dealing with 1 threat at a time.

The Kree Captain wanted to get to the Science Hall to consult the computer ISAAC, their best hope of finding a way to stop the mad god. He also reveals that he palmed the Cosmic Cube while Thanos and Drax fought, but its power is drained. Then they are attacked by demonic forms that Thanos creates out of the floor.

These unliving beings can't be stopped because they are unaffected even by being torn apart. Soon IM is down and CM stands alone. And he doesn't notice ISAAC manifesting as a hologram.

Thanos is talking to the mysterious object of his love, who will still don't officially know is Death. He can now promise her the universe.

But Drax has risen from the rubble of the observatory. He can't die until Thanos does, and now he attacks gain. Thanos' response is to show him his hidden life before Drax was 'created' by Kronos, expecting the revelation to weaken his relentless resolve.

Arthur and Yvette Douglas and their little daughter Heather were night-driving through the Nevada desert in 1953 when they saw Thanos' 1st scout-ship to Earth. To maintain secrecy Thanos destroyed their car, and Art's last sight as he died was Thanos.

But Heather survived and was brought to Titan by good Titanians. She grew up to be Moondragon, as shown in Daredevil #105. Mentor and Kronos intercepted Art's soul, and Kronos created the body of Drax for it, as seen in Iron Man #55. Mentor blocked his human memories.

But these revelations only add fuel to Drax's hatred of Thanos. But the Titan-god has gone, and so Drax flies off to find him.

We now visit Avengers Mansion where Lou-Ann worries about her boyfriend Rick Jones, Mar-Vell's sort-of alter ego. And Black Panther, Captain America, Mantis, Scarlet Witch, Swordsman, Thor and Vision assemble to oppose the spacefleet Thanos sent against Earth last issue.

While Captain Marvel continues to battle the demons, the ISAAC hologram makes himself known. CM asks how to defeat the creatures. ISAAC says there's no way - as long as CM exists they'll keep attacking. So CM hits on a desperate plan. He swaps place with Rick in the Negative Zone. And the demons stop moving.

Rick now grabs the Cosmic Cube, and tells ISAAC to teleport him to Earth. Mar-Vell earlier speculated that Thanos kept the heroes alive last issue because he wanted them to witness his triumph. The villain's ego is his weak point. So Rick shouts taunting insults at the omniscient Titan, immediately drawing his attention.

Rick claims that Thanos has never engaged Captain Marvel in a fair fight, because he is afraid of him. He persuades the god to manifest himself as a corporeal being again. And Thanos demands CM return from the Negative Zone to face him.

This story continues in AVENGERS (1963) #125 before returning here for the conclusion next issue.

Preview Pages
Click sample interior pages to enlarge them:

Jim Starlin
Dan Green
Jim Starlin
Jim Starlin (Cover Penciler)
Jim Starlin (Cover Inker)
Letterer: Dave Hunt.
Editor: Roy Thomas.


Listed in Alphabetical Order.

Black Panther
Black Panther

Captain America
Captain America

(Steve Rogers)
Captain Marvel
Captain Marvel


(Drax the Destroyer)
Iron Man
Iron Man

(Tony Stark)
Scarlet Witch
Scarlet Witch

(Wanda Maximoff)


Plus: Eros, Lou-Ann Savannah, Mentor of Titan.

> Captain Marvel: Book info and issue index

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