Good ol' Captain Marvel has built up quite a supporting cast over his 70+ years of existence. Read more about them here.
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The Marvel Family
Chosen by the wizard Shazam, the Marvel Family are empowered by six ancient gods and heroes, possessing the wisdom of Solomon, the strength of Hercules, the stamina of Atlas, the power of Zeus, the courage of Achilles, and the speed of Mercury.
The World's Mightiest Mortal himself, Captain Marvel is one of Earth's most powerful heroes. Clad in his red uniform and white-and-gold cape, Cap stands as a symbol of courage, strength, and kindness. What few know, however, is that he is in fact Billy Batson, a young orphan empowered by the great wizard Shazam to be his champion. Whenever he speaks the wizard's name—"SHAZAM!"—Billy is transformed into the mighty Captain Marvel!Billy's parents, famous archaeologists, were murdered by Theo Adam. After spending most of his childhood penniless and alone on the streets of Fawcett City, Shazam helped Billy find his long-lost twin sister, Mary, with whom he shared some of his vast power; he was then adopted by Mary's surrogate parents, the Bromfields. When not fighting evil as Captain Marvel, Billy is a schoolboy who moonlights as a novelty DJ for Whiz Radio.After Shazam was killed during the Infinite Crisis, Captain Marvel gained his power as the new wizard, Marvel. This was short-lived, as Shazam was resurrected a couple years later. Due to mistakes Billy, his sister, and Black Adam made in the wizard's absence, Billy is currently powerless, but the time will surely come when he regains his power as Captain Marvel once again.However, reality was reset before the Marvels could regain their powers. This resulted in some major changes to Billy's personalities in both identities. Billy was still mostly a good kid, but he was now a very troubled foster child and he wanted to grow up as fast as possible so that no one would have to take care of him. His superheroic codename was also changed to "Shazam", and his powers were now far more connected to his magical nature.Billy also appears in Jeff Smith's Monster Society of Evil and its followup Billy Batson and the Power of Shazam. In both he is much the same character as he was in the Golden Age and the 90s series The Power of Shazam.
Big Good: He is often treated like this, even in comparison to Superman, possibly due to Children Are Innocent. It's explicitly stated in the comics that Billy Batson would be Marvel full-time to help people, if not for the wizard Shazam insisting that Batson himself deserves some happiness in his life, too.
Genius Bruiser: When he remembers to properly utilise the Wisdom of Solomon, Captain Marvel is capable of being extremely intelligent. Billy himself was often written as very clever and insightful when writers didn't lazily make Cap seem less sophistocated in an effort to make him appear more "childlike".
Incorruptible Pure Pureness: In the '90s Crisis CrossoverUnderworld Unleashed, Billy's soul was so darn pure that not even the demon prince Neron could corrupt him. In fact he was stated out loud as having the most virtuous spirit of all DC heroes, even Superman. Superman is sometimes played as an older mentor to an even more idealistic younger brother, who can help out whenever there is magic or kryptonite involved.
Lantern Jaw of Justice: To sometimes ludicrous levels, actually. In Billy Batson and the Power of Shazam it's a miracle he can stand up his chin sticks out so far.
Man Child: He often comes across this way, but for a different reason—he's a young boy (or sometimes teenager) named Billy who can transform into an adult superhero. Early on the two forms had different personalities, but most modern interpretations make them the same person, acting like a Cheerful Child in both forms (though Marvel gets a bit of maturity from having the Wisdom of Solomon as one of his powers).
The Messiah: There's no one that Captain Marvel doesn't want to fix.
Nigh-Invulnerability: When transformed, he has no weaknesses whatsoever, as his magic invulnerability works against pretty much any type of assault. Basically the most invulnerable DC hero around. During a battle with the galaxy-ravaging Void Hound, he was hit by an attack that warped space to teleport him inside out, but was only dazed, and it was stated outright that if any other hero had been hit (including Wonder Woman and the Kryptonians) they would probably have died. At the height of their power during the later Golden and Silver Ages, the Marvels were literally invulnerable, to the point that Captain Marvel and Black Adam were incapable of hurting each other (this was done away with in the Bronze Age and Modern Ages). Basically, while Superman and Captain Marvel are virtual equals in most physical respects like Strength, Speed and Durability, the Captain can survive certain effects that Superman might not due to the mystical nature of his invulnerability (like magical attacks, or the aforementioned warp/inside out beam).
Put on a Bus: The general treatment ever since Marvel Comics appropriated his name. These days his main purpose is to fight Superman when the writers are lazy, though he has had a few good runs, including the 1995-1999 series and the First Thunder and Monster Society of Evil miniseries.
Sexier Alter Ego: Not that Billy Batson is ugly, but Cap is better looking (not to mention not jailbait).
Captain Marvel's twin sister. While Billy was consigned to poverty after their parents died, Mary was taken in by a kindly rich couple, the Bromfields. When the siblings became teenagers, they met by chance when Mary entered a contest emceed by Billy. When Billy was captured by a gang of thugs, Mary was granted the powers of Shazam and saved her brother, transforming into an adult version of herself. They were reunited at last and the Marvel Family was born.When Shazam died, Mary lost her powers, leading her on a quest to regain them. After gaining the powers of Black Adam, she fell victim to the silver tongue of the demon Eclipso, who brought her to the evil god Darkseid. Darkseid brainwashed Mary and his minion, Desaad, possessed her. After using Mary's body to fight the heroes of Earth, Desaad was cast out when Freddy Freeman used Shazam's power to exorcize him. She is currently powerless, her corruption by Darkseid having proven her unworthy to the resurrected Shazam; whether this would have changed was not seen by the time of the reboot.An alternate version of Mary appears in Jeff Smith's Monster Society of Evil. This version is a ten year old girl who is accidentally granted her powers when Billy transforms into Captain Marvel at too close a range; unlike him, she remains ten when she invokes the power of Shazam.
Action Girl: One of the oldest one in comics, actually.
All Your Powers Combined: In the Golden Age & Pre-Crisis stories, and in Jeff Smith's variant, Mary draws on Selena's Grace, Hippolyta's Strength, Artemis' Skill, Zephyrus' Speed (and flight), Aphrodite's Beauty, and Minerva's Wisdom. In the regular Post-Crisis continuity she gains her powers from the same mythological beings as Billy (which better justifies their having the identical powerset). She briefly gained them from the same sources as Black Adam as well.
Badass Adorable: Much of the time, but particularly in Jeff Smith's version.
Expy: In an odd series of developments, an editor ordered his writers to base Captain Marvel on Superman (although he turned out quite different and more lighthearted); Wonder Woman was apparently based on Captain Marvel (with the similar grounding in magic, and more specifically the divine gifts); Mary Marvel seemed based on Wonder Woman; Supergirl was based on Mary Marvel; and Power Girl was based on Supergirl.
Woman in White: Her second costume Post-Crisis was a white minidress with the yellow lightning bolt on the front.
Captain Marvel, Jr. / CM3 / Shazam II
AKA: Freddy Freeman
A friend of Billy Batson's who was crippled by Captain Nazi in both Pre-Crisis and Post-Crisis continuity, Freddy Freeman was granted a portion of Billy and Mary's powers in order to help him walk again. When he says "Captain Marvel" he is transformed into a physically perfect version of himself, with a portion of Captain Marvel's powers. He's had issues with Billy at various points, most notably due to his own interest in Mary and Billy's insistence on protecting his sister.
By the Power of Grayskull!: Unlike Billy and Mary, his "magic word" was "Captain Marvel!", not "Shazam!" (meaning that he couldn't even say his own name, hence the "CM3" apellation). This changed when he became the leader of the Marvel Family.
Clark Kenting: Though likely justified, as Freddy's status as a cripple will stop most people from thinking he could be a superhero.
Darker and Edgier: But just a little bit, and the drawing style for his original stories was never nearly as goofy as for the others, nor was the tone, which may be why he was chosen to replace Billy.
Foil: To Billy in both their guises in the 90s comic. Billy's something of a social outcast known only from the radio, while Freddy was the king of the school, and later ended up as the city's best known charity case. Conversely, Captain Marvel is a well-known and loved superhero on paar with Superman, while Captain Marvel Jr. is frequently seen as a loose cannon, particularly after some of his dustups with Captain Nazi.
Kid A Nova: Prior to his crippling, which is why Billy warns him away from Mary.
Hot-Blooded: Easily has the hottest temper of the three, which gets him in trouble fairly often.
Shout-Out: Elvis Presley was a huge Captain Marvel, Jr. fan when he was a kid, and his iconic Vegas outfit was in fact based on Freddy's costume. Modern writers have returned the favor by making Freddy a huge music fan with a love of Elvis in particular.
Coattail-Riding Relative: Well, a fake relative, anyway, and a relatively benign example. For a short time in the late 1940s, his daughter Freckles pulled the same stunt, essentially riding on his coattails!
Beware the Nice Ones: He's very kind-hearted and friendly, but push him too far and you WILL see the business end of his claws.
Deadpan Snarker: Has developed something between this and a permanent (and dapper!) calm; "Well, you do know what those who underestimate tigers always say, right? They scream 'Oh god, help me, I'm being mauled to death by a tiger.'"
Funny Animal / Talking Animal: In his first appearance, he was just a regular tiger who decided to walk on two legs, wear a suit, and come to the United States. Later stories Retconned him into an anthropomorphic tiger spirit.
The Lieutenant Marvels (Tall Marvel, Fat Marvel, and Hill Marvel)
AKA: "Tall" Billy Batson, "Fat" Billy Batson, and "Hill" Billy Batson
Three young boys from across the United States who just happened to share the same name as Billy "Captain Marvel" Batson—"Tall" Billy from Texas, "Fat" Billy from Brooklyn, and "Hill" Billy from down south. Travelling to Fawcett City to meet the famous kid radio star, the four formed the "Billy Batson Club". When the quartet were kidnapped by Doctor Sivana, Billy gave the other three the ability to transform into the Lieutenant Marvels by saying "Shazam". Afterwards, the three became members of the Marvel Family, aiding the Big Red Cheese on a part-time basis.The three Lieutenant Marvels were erased from history by the Crisis on Infinite Earths (though post-Crisis versions of them were briefly seen in Trials of Shazam!, only to immediately lose their powers).
Black Adam was an Egyptian champion of Shazam given his powers, who was sent into suspended animation after corrupting them upon the deaths of his family. In modern times, he was reincarnated in the body of a descendant, a thief and a murderer. Eventually, his original personality took hold, though before long, it was revealed that he was pretty brutal in the old days as well. Twisting various other legacy heroes to his ways, he formed his own team, took over his home country (killing the dictator in charge), and became a huge Anti-Hero character. He gained and lost a new family once his new team broke up, as Isis and Osiris were brutally killed in the 52 event, and he became a genocidal maniac as a result. Shazam has finally decided to punish him by turning him into a statue, and until the New 52 reboot, he remained stuck that way.A very different version of Black Adam appears in the alternate continuity of Billy Batson and the Power of Shazam. This version is a fellow schoolmate of Billy's who can nonetheless transform into the adult Black Adam.
All Your Powers Combined: Shu's Stamina, Heru's Swiftness and flight, Amon's Strength, Zehuti's Wisdom, Aton's Power, and Mehen's Courage.
Anti-Hero: Type V; a defining modern example. Despite being a hero on the JSA, he had no problem with killing people, finally quitting the team when they let Kobra go rather than see anyone die.
The Atoner: Initially, he joins the JSA to prove himself a hero, decrying the actions of Theo Adam. It doesn't turn out too well.
Evil Counterpart: Inverted. While Theo Adam didn't transform into Black Adam until after Billy had become Captain Marvel, Captain Marvel himself was originally created as the good counterpoint to the ancient Black Adam, who Shazam knew could be reawakened.
Fallen Hero: Black Adam was once a great hero in ancient Egypt, but fell to evil. He's tried to clean up his act in recent years, but is still an antihero at best.
Genius Bruiser: Black Adam is sometimes written this way, at least when he's a protagonist. Unlike with Captain Marvel, there's no supernatural element present. When he's a villain, for the record, he is typically of average intelligence.
Gorn: Various writers and artists could be said to indulge themselves to this with Adam stories, as he has Superman-level powers and no problems with killing. His mini-series was particularly bad. He's shred limbs, torn people in half, stomped people into goo, and punched a guy's metal mask through his face.
Love Makes You Evil: In some continuities' backstories, Adam was denounced and banished by the wizard for falling in love with an evil woman (such as Blaze in The Power of Shazam! or Princess Jemia in the Filmation cartoon). Of course, Adam doesn't see his lover as evil, hence his anger at the wizard.
Nigh-Invulnerability: There's not much out there that can hurt Black Adam; there have been times when neither he nor Captain Marvel could hurt the other.
Pointy Ears: Inexplicably. At first it was probably to give him a demonic appearance, but now it's just The Artifact (and makes him look like the Sub-Mariner's long-lost twin).
Reincarnation: Theo Adam is a descendent and reincarnation of the original Teth-Adam.
Roaring Rampage of Revenge: He demolishes an entire country, a Libya-stand-in called Bialya, when he finds out they allied with those who murdered Osiris and Isis.
Canon Immigrant: She was originally the star of a short-lived TV show from the '70s, though the comic version bears little resemblance to the original. This is because DC doesn't own the rights to the TV series version of the character, but have the loophole that the name "Isis" is in the public domain.
With Great Power Comes Great Insanity: Not originally, but she slips into genocidal mode after Black Adam frees her from Felix Faust's control. After Osiris reverts her back to normal from her stone state, she keeps slipping back from maniacal to good until Osiris is able to get her back to sanity.
AKA: Amon Tomaz
A God Am I: Thinks it's okay to kill normal people because of his godlike powers.
A Nazi super soldier and enemy of Captain Marvel who, in both Pre-and-Post-Crisis continuities crippled Freddy Freeman and murdered his grandfather. He's served in several supervillain teams since then, but always returns to clash with the Marvels, and Captain Marvel Jr. in particular.
Jerkass: A dick to everybody, including his brother and great-niece.
Kick the Dog: In the middle of a battle with Captain Marvel, Captain Nazi took time off to murder Freddy's grandfather and cripple him. Why? For the heck of it. He later came back and tried to finish Freddy off. Why? Because he doesn't like the fact that the public is sympathising with the kid.
A troubled girl with electrical powers and a fractured personality, Amy was saved by Captain Marvel Jr. when she tried to commit suicide. She eventually developed a crush on him, which the three alternate personalities (Amber, The Inner Child, and Id) skewed into a dangerous obsession.
The world's foremost Mad Scientist, Doctor Thaddeus Bodog Sivana is a spiteful, petty, raving troll of a man who will settle for nothing less than total global domination... if only he can get rid of that Big Red Cheese first. Originally the CEO of Sivana Industries, Sivana's battles with Captain Marvel led to his financial ruin, which caused him to slip deeper and deeper into insanity. He was also the employer of Theo Adam, and accidentally provided him with the scarab that turned him into Black Adam; he later helped create the Four Horsemen who killed Isis and Osiris. Today, Sivana is a rogue scientist who has allied himself with the Secret Society of Super-Villains, the Injustice League, and the Oolong Island Science Squad.In the alternate continuity of Jeff Smith's The Monster Society of Evil, Sivana is US Attorney-General, and betrays the human race to Mister Mind in exchange for his advanced technology.
Arch-Enemy: Was Captain Marvel's archnemesis during the Golden Age (appearing in fully half his stories) and proudly proclaims himself the holder of this title in The Power of Shazam.
Even Evil Has Loved Ones: His children, and not just the evil ones. In The Power of Shazam, when he and Captain Marvel are escaping from the Venusian worms, he is insistent that they also have to free his son Magnificus, who is very much the White Sheep of the family.
Evil Cripple: Downplayed. Sivana is sometimes portrayed as needing the aid of a cane to walk.
Misanthrope Supreme: Subverted in the 90s comics, where he appears to have sold out the human race to the Venusian worms, but was actually being braincontrolled by one of them. Played straight in Monster Society of Evil, where he does betray humanity to Mister Mind in exchange for access to his advanced technologies.
Take Over the World: His stated goals are, in no particular order—1) Become Rightful Ruler of the Universe in fact as well as in name; 2) Spread evil, wickedness, and nastiness throughout the cosmos; and 3) humiliate, discredit, and ultimately KILL CAPTAIN MARVEL! Heh heh heh!
Dr. Sivana's youngest daughter, and the twin sister of Thaddeus Sivana Jr, Georgia Sivana inherited her father's meanstreak, and regrettably, his looks. A miserable, resentful girl, she frequently clashed with the Marvels (and Mary Marvel in particular) during the Golden Age; she hasn't appeared much since.
A scrawny criminal who gains Caligula's cruelty, Ivan the Terrible's ability to inspire terror, Ceasare Borgia's cunning and Atilla the Hun's ferocity when he says "Ibac". Somehow this results in a Dumb Muscle bruiser who poses little threat to anyone with superpowers.
The great-niece of Captain Nazi, and granddaughter of his Mad Scientist brother, Wolf, Madame Libertine is a committed Neo-Nazi who possesses the power to make people lose their inhibitions. She has a rocky relationship with her misogynistic great-uncle, yet aids him nonetheless.
An evil worm (or caterpillar) from Venus, Mister Mind uses his telepathic powers to try and rule the world. The Pre-Crisis, Golden Age Mind wore spectacles, used a voice box to communicate with regular humans, and ran a group called The Monster Society of Evil, which included most of Captain Marvel's major enemies, and tried to sabotage Allied efforts during WWII.Despite what you might be expecting after reading the above, he's one of the few Captain Marvel villains who isn'tPlayed for Laughs Post-Crisis. Reimagined as a more realistic looking caterpillar, Mind's telepathic powers were made far more potent, making him one of the most powerful psychics in the DCU. He tried to pave the way for his species to invade Earth, and following his defeat hijacked Sarge Steel and tried to trigger a nuclear holocaust, destroying Mary Marvel's hometown of Fairfield in the process. Since then, he's evolved into the Hyperfly and tried to devour the multiverse, clashed with Lex Luthor on behalf of the Zone Child, and remained a major player in the Post-Crisis world.A version of Mind also appears in the Alternate Universe of The Monster Society of Evil, as a tiny snake from another dimension who invades Earth with his army of monsters and giant robots, manipulating the likes of Dr. Sivana to serve his purposes.
Aliens Are Bastards: His entire species was pretty godawful, a fact that Mind acknowledges during a conversation with Captain and Mary Marvel.
Archenemy: To the Marvel Family as a whole, in both the Golden Age and the Dark Age & Modern Age of Comic Books. Individual enemies like Sivana and Captain Nazi have claims on Captain Marvel and Captain Marvel Jr., but when it comes to threatening the Marvels as a group, nobody holds a candle to Mister Mind.
Attack of the 50-Foot Whatever: Creates a hallucination of himself growing to several hundred feet and then rampaging through Washington and the White House.
Badass Bookworm: Surprisingly resilient for something so small, Mind manages to give the Captains a good fight after climbing into his Powered Armour.
Big Bad: Of the Monster Society of Evil, and numerous arcs in the comics, with and without the Society behind him. He was also The Big Bad in Jeff Smith's "Monster Society of Evil", which takes place in an alternate universe.
Bizarre Alien Biology: Let's see—he's immune to electricity, hibernates when frozen, can survive beatings no one should be able to, can breed without mating, and oh yeah, can pass his memories onto his offspring via a strand of RNA.
Hive Mind: The only survivor of one, he has all the powers of everyone who was ever connected to him.
Hive Queen: Hive King actually, controlling every single one of his larvae.
Humongous Mecha: Brings three giant robots to invade Earth and scour it of life in "Monster Society of Evil." From his perspective, the Powered Armour he used in Power of Shazam is probably an example of this as well.
Ineffectual Sympathetic Villain: Played with in The Black Ring. Mind goes through a lot of trauma and would be sympathetic but, as Luthor reminds himself, this is the being that nuked a city and tried to devour the multiverse.
Karma Houdini: Post-Crisis Mind was last scene making his escape into deep space with Luthor's Lois Lane robot as a bodysuit. The reboot happened immediately afterwards, so he never got his commeuppance.
Kill All Humans: Tries this in his second appearance in The Power of Shazam, attempting to arrange a nuclear holocaust.
Knight of Cerebus: In The Power of Shazam, where he enslaved minds, mutated Sinclair Batson into a twisted mess, blew up Fairfield and threatened the world with nuclear annihilation, a far cry from the petty criminals that Captain Marvel normally dealt with.
Made of Iron: Mind has survived freezing, blowing up, being thrown off a skyscraper, and numerous other events that should kill a human, let alone a being of his size. His Bizarre Alien Biology may be a part of this.
The Man Behind the Curtain: In his first confrontation with Captain Marvel in the Golden Age he only talked through media and never revealed himself. As a result, it was quite a surprise to find out the fearsome Mister Mind actually was a mere worm. The same thing happens in Jeff Smith's "Monster Society of Evil", where Mind hides inside a giant robot, and when asked to show himself, uses a much larger projection. Billy and Mary are quite shocked when they meet the real Mister Mind.
The Man Behind The Monsters: In The Monster Society of Evil, he has an army of talking alien aligators, centaurs, cyclopes, and other strange beings at his disposal.
Truly Single Parent: Produces large numbers of larval offspring whom he then mind controls into doing his bidding.
AKA: Timothy Karnes
Freddy Freeman's former foster brother, Timothy Karnes used black magic to contact Hell and gain powers from six of the most powerful archdevils and demon lords in existence. When he says "Sabbac" he is transformed into a green-robed version of himself, empowered by the demons in much the same the Marvel Family is empowered by its benefactors.
All Your Powers Combined: Has Satan's Strength, Any's Invulnerability, Belial's Wisdom, Beelzebub's Flames, Asmodeus' Courage, and Craeteis' Flight.
A Russian mob boss with a serious craving for power, Ishmael Gregor killed the original Sabbac and stole his power in a black magic ritual, transforming into a new version of Sabbac that stood several stories tall.
All Your Powers Combined: Has Satan's Strength, Any's Invulnerability, Belial's Wisdom, Beelzebub's Flames, Asmodeus' Courage, and Craeteis' Flight.
In addition to the Marvel Family, Fawcett City is home to various other heroes, mostly drawn from DC's acquisitions from Fawcett Comics.
Bulletman and Bulletgirl
AKA: Jim and Susan Barr
Ibis the Invincible
AKA: Jack Weston
Mister Scarlet and Pinky the Whiz Kid
AKA: Brian and Pinkerton Butler
AKA: Alan Armstrong
The Squadron of Justice
A team of super-heroes brought together by the god Mercury, the informally-named Squadron of Justicenote they were only called by this name on one cover was the Earth-S counterpart to Earth-1's Justice League and Earth-2's Justice Society. Comprised of Captain Marvel, the Lieutenant Marvels, Bulletman, Bulletgirl, Ibis, Mister Scarlet, and Pinky, they came together to rescue Shazam from the clutches of King Kull. They won the day with the aid of the JLA and JSA. The Squadron of Justice does not exist post-Crisis.
Sterling Morris is the owner of WHIZ Radio in Fawcett City in the original and current continuities, and the owner of SNN and WHIZ TV in the Earth-5note Or The Monster Society of Evil and Billy Batson and the Magic of Shazam! continuity. As such, he's Billy Batson's boss.
Honest Corporate Executive: In all continuities he's more than willing to hire Billy to work as a correspondent. In The Monster Society of Evil, he accepts Captain Marvel's claims that Sivana is corrupt, despite Cap being on Sivana's wanted list.
That said, he sometimes acknowledges that his media empire is a business, and he admits that Billy Batson's reporting is fantastic for ratings.
Da Editor: In addition to owning the radio (or TV) station, he oversees its operations and programming.
Helen Fidelity is a reporter for SNN and WHIZ TV, who meets and befriends Captain Marvel, Billy, and their friends during Mr. Mind's invasion in The Monster Society of Evil.
''"Just call me 'Tia. Otherwise you're just stating the obvious."
The oldest daughter of Dr. Sivana, Beautia is stunningly pretty, and exceptionally pleasant, if vain. Initially willing to work for her father, she quickly turned on him, becoming an ally and friend of the Marvel Family during the Golden Age. In the Dark Age and Modern Age, we only meet her after her Heel-Face Turn. In both continuities, she has a serious crush on Captain Marvel.
White Sheep: She and her brother are this to the rest of the Sivana family.
World's Most Beautiful Woman: Treated this way within the Captain Marvel book, and especially during the Golden Age (in the modern age, she just happens to be the prettiest woman Billy's met).
Dr. Sivana's oldest son, Magnificus possessed Super Strength during the Golden Age, and briefly worked for his father, before performing a Heel-Face Turn and siding with Captain Marvel. In the Post-Crisis verse we only meet him post-Heel-Face Turn, without any powers, and working as an astronaut.
Beauty Equals Goodness: He and his sister Beautia are the attractive ones in the family, and the good looking ones.