DC and Warner Bros. released Shazam! to widespread acclaim in 2019, but for many, this character was mostly unknown. That's surprising given the fact that Shazam... or his original counterpart, Captain Marvel, had been in publication off and on since the late 1930s in hundreds, if not thousands of comic book issues! Around the same time DC was throwing a cape onto a Kryptonian, Fawcett Publication introduced the world to Captain Marvel and his entire family of superheroes.
Fans of the character may already know that DC eventually bought the rights to Fawcett's library and renamed the character to Shazam to keep Marvel Comics at bay, but how much is really known about him? If you had to choose the best stories that have featured Shazam/Captain Marvel over the years, would you be able to? Fortunately, you don't have to as this list highlights the 20 best Shazam adventures in stories from DC and Fawcett's comics! Whether it's a single issue, multiple comic books, one of his many graphic novels, trade paperback, or something else entirely, it may be found on this article of the best Shazam story arcs every told! If you see your favorite, don't forget to vote it up and see which of Shazam!'s greatest storylines rises to the top!
Story Found In: Kingdom Come #1-4
Kingdom Come is another work illustrated by the inimitable Alex Ross with Mark Waid coming on to scribe. The four-issue miniseries tells the story of a world in the near future. Most of the superheroes of the current age have long since retired, and it's up to a new generation of... heroes... to take up the mantle. The only problem, the new heroes are far more brutal and destructive than the old ones, which forces several of them to come out of retirement... including the Man of Steel!
This is more of a Superman story than it is a Shazam story, but that only means the Man of Steel had to go up against Earth's Mightiest Mortal at one point or another. The two have a huge fight, which is painted to perfection in the pages of these books, any fan of Shazam absolutely has to add it to their collection.
Is this a great storyline?
- Publisher: DC Comics
Story Found In: Justice League #7-11, 0, 14-16, & 18-21
DC loves a reboot, and that's exactly what the publisher put out with Shazam!: Origins, a rebooted version of the character thanks to the New 52 reboot that kicked off in 2011. As that was happening, this new take on the character following the Flashpoint origin was introduced by Geoff Johns and Gary Frank.
The new continuity expands Shazam's role as the protector of Fawcett City to that of Philadelphia. His family, formerly dubbed The Marvel Family, was also reintroduced as The Shazam Family, which included his adopted siblings Pedro, Eugene, and Darle. All of the stories that went into creating this new continuity are collected in a single trade paperback you can pick up on Amazon today!Is this a great storyline?
Shazam! Power of Hope
Story Found In: Shazam! Power of Hope
In what may the most beautifully illustrated Shazam! story to date, Alex Ross teamed up with Paul Dini to create a book full of inspiration and despair, which helps to connect the superhero to the real world. When Billy begins to feel depressed about being Captain Marvel, he is warned by the Wizard that a child will face similar despair and look to him for hope.
Taking the Wizard's words to heart, Shazam heads to a local children's hospital where he answers letters and meets with sick kids to help them. He manages to take some on flying jaunts across the city and generally cheers them up, but through it all, he learns that despair can strike anyone, anywhere. It helps him to realize his own purpose in a story that will make you feel all sorts of emotions. Truly one of the best Shazam! stories ever printed.Is this a great storyline?
Story Found In: Convergence: Shazam!
The Crisis on Infinite Earths closed the door on the Fawcett Universe, otherwise known as Earth-S. It would take some time before many of the characters associated with the formerly-named Captain Marvel to make an appearance in the normal continuity of the DC Universe. This book marks the occasion several characters of the Marvel Family (Now called the Shazam Family) popped over for a visit.
In this book, Shazam and the rest of his family find themselves having to deal with Steampunk of all things when the world of Gotham by Gaslight requires their attention. It's a fun story featuring many characters from the golden days of Captain Marvel but told in a modern way new readers and old fans alike are certain to enjoy.Is this a great storyline?