Writer: Emily Ryan Lerner
Penciler: Andrea Broccardo
Inkers: Andrea Broccardo & Le Beau Underwood
Color Artist: Dono Sánchez-Almara
Letterer: VC’s Clayton Cowles
Covers: David Nakayama; Nick Bradshaw & Erick Arciniega; Mike McKone & Rachelle Rosenberg
Release Date: November 20, 2019
Reviewed by: Stork
Carnage captures Carol’s cat Chewie! Can Captain Marvel contain the cascading chaos? All right, enough alliteration. The real question: is this tie-in worth the price of admission? Come check out ABSOLUTE CARNAGE: CAPTAIN MARVEL #1 by Emily Ryan Lerner, and see!
The book opens with Captain Marvel pondering the vastness of space while floating in it. She avoids any existential crises by doing what we all do when thoughts of infiniteness, one’s place in it, what’s for dinner, etc. creep in— watch cat videos. Thankfully, Emily Ryan Lerner doesn’t just have Carol watching Grumpy Cat while actually flying in space; she’s checking in on her feline/Flerken, Chewie.
After some fun panels of watching Chewie doing cat things, Captain Marvel is interrupted by a giant space monster. This is where Andrea Broccardo’s art is at its best. The monsters in the book all look great. Unfortunately, the same can’t be true of the human characters in the issue. You can still tell who is who but faces change depending on angles. Plus, distant figures and features are just flat-out bad.
After dispatching the space squid toot sweet, Carol heads back to her apartment for a shower and some down-time with Chewie. Unfortunately, Carnage has paid the cat a visit and now controls her. A Carnage-sized cat would be bad enough, but don’t forget that Chewie is a Flerken, a dangerous alien in her own right.
Captain Marvel fights her Flerken but gets swallowed whole, and there’s a great throwback by Lerner to the beginning of the book, as Carol feels the dread of being in this pocket dimension, and her own dealings with Symbiotes in the past. There’s even an editor’s note to see Siege: Spider-Man for more info on the topic. Considering there’s also a naked guy cowering behind a fire hydrant on the same page, maybe (like me) you’ll be compelled to find out if that really happened or Broccardo was just having some fun.
The rest of the issue is mostly a fight inside Chewie between Captain Marvel and Carnage, the highlight being Carol’s neighbor witnessing it from the outside. It’s no big surprise who wins the brawl, but for the sake of avoiding spoilers now’s a good time to end the review proper. If you’re reading the event, this book does come before Absolute Carnage #5, releasing the same day.
Overall, Absolute Carnage: Captain Marvel #1 is an average tie-in comic. The story is okay. The art is average at best. For every fun “Bad kitty” bit of dialogue, there’s an off-putting “FOMO.” If you’re collecting everything Absolute Carnage, go ahead and pick it up. For the rest looking for “absolute” must tie-ins, save your five bucks.