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aka: Mary Marvel

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"Family is what it can be, not what it should be."
The Wizard

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    As a Whole 

Chosen by the wizard Shazam, the Marvel Family (or Shazam Family, or Shazamily) 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.


  • Badass Family / Badass Crew: All of them, even Captain Dudley.
  • By the Power of Grayskull!: For most of them, "Shazam!"
  • The Cape: Seriously. Even more than Superman.
  • Chest Insignia: A giant lightning bolt
  • Flying Brick / Super Power Lottery
    • Flight: A side effect of gaining his speed from Mercury.
    • Magic and Powers: Certainly.
    • Super Strength: Hercules' strength, as mentioned above.
    • Super Speed: Thanks to the speed of Mercury.
    • Shock and Awe: By summoning and dodging their magic transformation lightning. Against non-marvel targets, it acts just like how you'd expect lightning to act.
  • Henshin Hero: Some of the first!
  • The Last of These Is Not Like the Others: Well, "The First Of These Is Not Like The Others". While the names that make up the "HAZAM" are from Classical Mythology, the "S" comes from King Solomon.
  • Lightning Can Do Anything: Golden and Bronze Age stories feature the Shazam lightning doing more than just transforming the various Marvels. (For example, that time he beat Mr. Atom at the Indy 500 by using his lightning to turn a racecar into the Shazamobile)
  • Older Alter Ego: Though it depends on the era. Billy always transforms into an adult as a superhero, Mary did so during the '90s and in the DC Extended Universe, and Freddy only was able to do this once he replaced Billy pre-Flashpoint and then in the New 52.
    • It's canon that the magic transforms the user into their idea of a superhero which implies that users can adjust their transformed appearance through visualization. That part's not canon but it has been used to explain differences in their appearance between reboots as well as between each other in canon.
  • Superhero Speciation: The obvious redundancy with Superman has finally been worked out in modern times with Supes valuing an ally whose similar, but magic and gods based, powers makes him very welcome company against supernatural foes while Cap enjoys him as a mentor.
    • The Shazam: Monster Society of Evil and Magic of Shazam continuity tries to do this within the family: going with the older idea that Mary's powers are derived from different (female) figures than Billy's, they work a bit differently, such as Mary being faster but Billy being stronger, and Mary able to detect life signs in the surrounding area.
  • Superpowered Alter Ego: Also one of the first.
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    Captain Marvel / Marvel / Shazam 
AKA: Billy Batson
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/captain_marvel_133.jpeg

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.


  • Alliterative Name: Billy Batson.
  • All Your Powers Combined: Draws his strength and abilities from multiple gods, with each one represented in his name by a corresponding letter.
    • Solomon grants Billy wisdom and a kind of clairvoyance/semi-omniscience as he can use the Wisdom of Solomon to know almost any objective fact about anything he encounters. That said, he cannot know the personal details of people or the actions they have done or what they are thinking. Solomon's power is more or less like a universal encyclopedia.
    • Hercules grants Billy superhuman strength and given that Hercules can hold up the earth, that's a lot of strength. As Shazam, Billy can match heavy hitting power houses like Superman, Darkseid, or the Martian Manhunter.
    • Atlas grants Billy virtually limitless stamina, endurance, and complete self-sustenance. While transformed into Shazam Billy will almost never tire or grow fatigued and doesn't need to eat, drink, sleep, or breath.
    • Zeus grants Billy a huge power-boost and abilities beyond what he gets from the other gods. Aside from letting Billy summon and control Lightning, Zeus also allows him to fly and manipulate all types of mystical forces while enhancing all of his other abilities. Zeus also grants Billy near immortality and magical healing abilities.
    • Achilles grants Billy courage and spiritual reinforcement along with nigh-invulnerability. Billy's invulnerability while transformed is magical and thus can shrug of mystical as well as physical forces. Achilles also reinforces Billy's spirit and courage allowing him to fight monstrous magical entities and traverse eldritch realms without going insane.
    • Mercury grants Billy super-speed that can rival the likes of Superman and the Flash. Billy's speed, like the Flash and Superman allow him to move and fly at speeds that can exceed light while giving him enhanced perception to allow him to control his speed.
  • Alternate Company Equivalent: Originally Fawcett's version of Superman. Now effectively an expy, since DC now owns both characters.
  • Arch-Enemy: Has considered Black Adam, Dr. Sivana, and Mister Mind to be his archfoes at various points. The feeling is definitely mutual.
  • Badass Cape: Though an unusually short one.
  • Big Good: He is often treated like this, even in comparison to Franchise/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.
  • Black Bead Eyes: As Billy Batson, in the early comics.
  • Catchphrase: "Holy moley!"
  • Chest Insignia: The big lightning bolt.
  • Darker and Edgier: As of the New 52 and rename to "Shazam", all his more idealistic elements have been made much more cynical.
  • Death by Origin Story: His parents. In modern continuity, they were killed by Black Adam's descendant/reincarnation.
  • Depending on the Writer: He has had to call on different gods for SHAZAM over the years.
  • Embarrassing Nickname: The Big Red Cheese, bestowed upon him by Doctor Sivana unlike his *other* embarrassing nicknames which were bestowed upon him by Freddy.
    • During his time in the JLI, Guy Gardner gave him "Captain Whitebread".
  • Eyes Always Shut: As Captain Marvel. But then again, that's Depending on the Artist; those that follow this art style are usually paying homage to C.C. Beck's original style, which often gave the Captain these.
  • Fast as Lightning: Zig-Zagged. He has a lightning bolt Chest Insignia, can summon and control lightning and has super speed. However, the powers are unrelated — the lightning is inherited from Zeus, and the speed from Mercury. The end result, though, is still a super-speed character with a lightning motif.
  • Flight: One of the abilities conferred by the power of Zeus.
  • Flying Brick: In the mold of Superman.
  • Friend to All Children: The original hero for all children everywhere.
  • Fun Personified: Considered to be at his best, as Superman with a goofy sense of humor.
  • 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 sophisticated in an effort to make him appear more "childlike".
  • The Good Captain: In his name.
  • Good Counterpart: Created by Shazam to be a good counterpart to Black Adam.
  • Heroic Build: More muscular than Superman when transformed.
  • Hero-Worshipper: Of Superman.
  • Ideal Hero: Even more ideal than Superman.
  • Intergenerational Friendship: He meets Superman while dealing with a cult that wants to bring Ibac to existence so that he can fight Captain Marvel. However, through teamwork they managed to defeat him and also defeat Eclispo as well. After Captain Marvel’s friend gets shot during an attack on him and died in the hospital. Finding out Sivana was behind it, Captain Marvel goes to kill him but stops himself at the last second. Later, Superman confronts him, but is confused when he sees Captain Marvel mourning this 10-year-old as his best friend. Captain Marvel explains his real identity and shows Superman he's Billy Batson. Superman angrily confronts the wizard who turned Billy into a child soldier. The wizard agrees with him, but he manages to convince Superman that Billy was the only trustworthy vessel. The Wizard does convince him to be there for Billy. Superman shows Billy his secret identity as Clark Kent and he and Billy become close friends.
  • Incorruptible Pure Pureness: In the '90s Crisis Crossover Underworld Unleashed, Billy's soul was so darn pure that not even the demon prince Neron and the evil influence of Hell could corrupt him, despite corrupting all the other heroes present. 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.
  • Kid Hero: Although he's not a kid when he's a hero.
  • Kill the Cutie: In some Darker and Edgier DC entries that retain Billy's good nature, he's usually ends up paying for it.
  • 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.
  • Manchild: 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).
  • Nice Guy: Very much so aside from the New 52; his cheerful, friendly, and compassionate personality rivals Superman's.
  • 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).
    • Shazam is less invulnerable than Captain Marvel, if his getting killed in one hit in Injustice is any indication.
  • No Celebrities Were Harmed: His appearance was based on actor Fred MacMurray.
  • Older Alter Ego: Fully adult when transformed.
  • Orphan's Ordeal: Depending on the adaptation, Billy initial struggles either involved his difficulty fitting in an orphanage, surviving being homeless, or trying to adjust living with his uncle.
  • Physical God: Since he combines the strong points of multiple mythological gods.
  • 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.
  • Rage-Breaking Point: He gets this in the "First Thunder" comic, when Billy Batson’s best friend is killed by Dr Sivana and sends him as Capt. Marvel on a Roaring Rampage of Revenge that ends with him nearly killing Sivana.
  • Sexier Alter Ego: Very attractive as an adult.
  • Shock and Awe: The New 52 Shazam can just shoot lightning directly, without having to summon and dodge.
  • Sibling Team: With Mary.
  • Super Intelligence: Having access to Solomon's Wisdom boosts Billy's IQ to genius levels.
  • Superman Substitute: The first and most iconic example. He is basically the Superman of the Magic World.
  • Super Reflexes: Part and parcel with the Super Speed.
  • Super Speed: Right up there with Superman in this department. Having Mercury as the source of your speed is a good place to be.
  • Super Strength: Again, to Superman levels. Given that it's coming from Hercules, this should not be surprising.
  • Thou Shalt Not Kill: Though, as he tells Captain Nazi, he has no obligation to save him.
  • Top-Heavy Guy: In some of his cartoonier incarnations.
  • Will They or Won't They?: With Stargirl. They didn't.

    Mary Marvel / Lady Shazam 
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/mary_marvel_004.jpg

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 exorcise 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.

Another alternate version of Mary exists in the DC Comics Bombshells universe. Miriam "Miri" Marvel. She is the only person with the "Power of SHAZAM!" in this continuity. SHAZAM in this case is the initials of a half dozen Jewish heroines.


  • Abusive Parents: In the New 52 continuity she ran away from her biological family when she around around 10 because they basically forced her into being a domestic slave.
  • Action Girl: One of the oldest one in comics, actually.
  • Alliterative Name: As Mary Marvel.
  • Ambiguous Situation: The New 52 incarnation is loosely implied to possibly still be a blood relative of Billy, rather than just a foster sibling, in that Billy's sympathetic magical link to the Shazam powers affects her before Billy shares his powers with the other kids.
  • Badass Adorable: Much of the time, but particularly in Jeff Smith's version.
  • Badass Cape: Usually
  • Beware the Nice Ones: In Superbuddies, she's portrayed as incredibly sweet and naive... and then gets Mind Controlled and proceeds to almost kill Captain Freaking Atom.
  • Brainwashed and Crazy: In Countdown to Final Crisis.
  • Chest Insignia: Same as the rest of her family.
  • Clark Kenting: Averted in the 90s series, where she turns into an adult under the influence of the magic. Played straight Pre-Crisis and in Monster Society of Evil.
  • Cute Bruiser: In both the regularly continuity and even moreso in Jeff Smith's version.
  • Demonic Possession: By Desaad in Final Crisis.
  • Depending on the Artist: She often switches between being a young graceful woman and a short girl in pigtails.
  • Depending on the Writer: She called on different gods for SHAZAM over the years. She's done it more times than her brother.
    • She originally called on female mythological figures: Selene for grace, Hippolyta for strength, Ariadne (and later Artemis) for skill, Zephyrus for fleetness and flight (though Zephyrus stands out as a male god), Aurora (later Aphrodite) for beauty and Minerva for wisdom.
    • She temporarily had Black Adam's powers and so would call on Egyptian gods (Shu, Heru, Amon, Zehuti, Aten and Mehen).
    • In the Bombshells comic she calls on the name of Hebrew women (Shiphrah, Huldah, Abigail, Zipporah, Asenath and Miriam).
  • Distaff Counterpart: Possibly the first superhero example, although Namora was introduced near the same time.
  • Drunk on the Dark Side: In Countdown she briefly starts sharing Black Adam's powers and goes flying off the deep end.
  • 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.
  • Evil Costume Switch: Provides the trope image. When Mary acquires Black Adam's powers, her costume turns black and she gains a new level in moral ambiguity. It's taken even further in Final Crisis where she sports a dominatrix outfit and pink pigtails on an otherwise shaved head.
  • Face–Heel Turn: In Countdown to Final Crisis. In Final Crisis, it was Retconned as Demonic Possession.
  • Flying Brick: Her usual powers, but mystical in nature.
  • Friend to All Children: Loves children, fitting considering she’s a child in her normal form.
  • Fun Personified: A trait she retained Post-crisis, even when the DC Universe was getting darker and darker around her.
  • Genius Bruiser: As with Billy this is dependent upon her using the Wisdom of Solomon (Minerva in the Pre-Crisis continuity). In the 90s series, she was more prone to doing this than he was.
  • I Just Want to Be Special: Mary cannot stand not having her powers to the point of addiction, even to the point of stating her powers were the only trait that gave her life purpose and disparaging being normal. When she lost her powers after the death of the Wizard Shazam, she went to desperate lengths to get her powers back, even trusting and taking the powers of Black Adam with his permission which led her down the path of corruption and evil.
  • Incorruptible Pure Pureness: Before Countdown, including the wonderful handling in the 12-part "I Can't Believe It's Not The Justice League" story.
  • Kid Hero: Most incarnations she’s a kid with the ability to transform into a adult.
  • Magic Skirt: Her usual attire.
  • Minidress of Power: All her costumes.
  • Most Common Superpower: When she transforms, Mary's bust becomes D-cup size.
  • Motor Mouth: Was this in one issue from the early 2000's when Fire bought an apartment with her. Had to do with Mary discovering coffee for the first time.
  • My Sister Is Off-Limits!: Sometimes, Mary reacts badly to girls flirting with her brother. In Superman vs. Shazam!, Mary constantly gushes over Superman until his cousin finally loses her patience. Wanting to give Mary a taste of her own medicine, Supergirl gives Billy a hug and an eyelash-batting which get sweet-as-pie Mary mad.
    Mary Marvel: That's my brother you've got your hands all over, Supergirl! Why don't you pick on someone your own age?
    Captain Marvel: Actually, Mary, I thought it—
    Mary Marvel: I DON'T CARE WHAT YOU THOUGHT!
  • Nice Girl: Extremely friendly and likable in both forms. Her extreme compassion rivals her brother.
  • Nigh-Invulnerability: At times considered impossible to harm in her transformed form.
  • No Celebrities Were Harmed: Her appearance was originally based on Judy Garland.
  • Plot-Relevant Age-Up: For Mary's superhero form towards the end of Billy Batson and the Magic of Shazam (which follows the Jeff Smith continuity). Mary says the magic word at the Rock of Eternity (where the magic is more unstable), and when the smoke clears, her superhero form is no longer a child.
    • In the New 52 incarnation, she's the oldest of the team and only a few months away from her 18th birthday. Most of her Kid Hero attributes have been given to Darla instead.
  • Put on a Bus: Almost.
  • Sexier Alter Ego: Mary Marvel is taller, leggier, and older than Mary Bromfield in the 90s series.
  • She's Got Legs: As Mary Marvel
  • Sibling Team: With Billy
  • Spoiled Sweet: Golden Age Mary was raised in luxury by her adoptive mother, a noted society lady by the name of Bromfield, and led a much more sheltered life than either Billy or Freddy. It didn't stop her from being the kindest-hearted girl in the Marvel Family.
  • Statuesque Stunner: As Mary Marvel in the 90s series, where she grew to about six feet tall.
  • Super Intelligence: By accessing Solomon (or Minerva)'s Wisdom, Mary can reason out solutions to problems that are far beyond her.
  • Super Reflexes: A given when empowered by six gods known for their sharpness in battle.
  • This Is Your Brain on Evil: Again, Countdown. It was so egregious that Shazam decided Mary wasn't worthy of her powers and removed them immediately after his resurrection.
  • Thou Shalt Not Kill: Her usual mo. Not so much when she’s evil.
  • Unrelated in the Adaptation: While the original Mary was Billy's blood related sister, given the strangeness of her introduction, there have been several adaptations simplify their relationship by making her an adoptive sibling, emphasizing his difficulty socializing with a new family in contrast to his brief stint at being homeless/living as an orphan.
  • UST: On and off with Captain Marvel Jr.

    Captain Marvel, Jr. / CM3 / Shazam II 
AKA: Freddy Freeman
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/captain_marvel_jr_392.jpg

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, with a strikingly distinctive yellow on blue (with a red cape) variation of the Marvel costume. 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.

During the Trials of Shazam series (when Billy had ascended to become the Wizard Marvel), he became the superhero Shazam, wearing a costume identical to Captain Marvel's, but with his own face and somewhat longer hair.

In the New 52, he's redesigned more radically still, gaining blond hair as well as using a pair of crutches rather than his usual single one as Freddy and aging into an adult in superpowered form as "King Shazam". The first two of those changes were reversed for the movie.


  • Alliterative Name: Freddy Freeman.
  • All Your Powers Combined: The same beings who empower Billy (and in modern continuity Mary) empower Freddy.
  • Badass Cape: Usually.
  • Berserk Button: Captain Nazi is a walking berserk button for Freddy during the 90s series, and the mere mention of the man, let alone the sight of him, can send Freddy into a homicidal rage.
  • Breakout Character: Went from a side-character to one of the Marvel family.
  • Break the Cutie: Happened to him at the hands of Captain Nazi.
  • 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.
    • As Shazam, he had to say "Shazam", which led to the same problem.
  • Celebrity Paradox:
  • Clark Kenting: Though likely justified, as Freddy's disability will stop most people from thinking he could be a superhero.
  • Custom Uniform: It wasn't of his own design, but with everyone else in the Marvel Family having the the gold on red with a white cape color motif, Junior was a boldly striking contrast with his gold on blue with a red cape style. It was mitigated a bit when Mary changed her costume to gold on white.
  • 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.
  • Death by Origin Story: His grandfather, killed by Captain Nazi.
  • Depending on the Writer: Deeply earnest in the Golden Age, he's a High-School Hustler in New 52 and turns towards being a Disabled Snarker superhero fanboy/student/expert in the movie.
  • Determinator: The trials of Shazam test him to see if he is worthy to bear the mantle of Captain Marvel and his powers. He believes he fails, but when an evil sorceress tries to take the power for herself and nearly dooms the Earth, he fights her and is prepared to kill himself and destroy the magic itself to stop her. This perseverance and courage earns him the title of Captain Marvel.
  • Disability-Negating Superpower: To the point that his crutch (usually) just seems to...disappear...and rematerialize when he powers down.
  • Flying Brick: His usual powerset, but like the others mystical in nature.
  • 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 par with Superman, while Captain Marvel Jr. is frequently seen as a loose cannon, particularly after some of his dustups with Captain Nazi.
  • Good Is Not Soft: It takes a lot to get on his bad side but he's had to be restrained from trying to kill Captain Nazi; a more typical display of his temper was rescuing the bullying Bryer brothers from the top of a collapsing Ferris wheel via suitcase wedgie.
  • Handicapped Badass: Something of a borderline case since a fully-functional set of legs along with Flying Brick powers are never more than two words away, but Freddy not infrequently puts himself in dangerous situations before transforming and has occasionally saved the day when Junior accidentally powers down at the worst possible moment.
  • Heroic Sacrifice: Attempts this in the Trials of Shazam. it makes him worthy to be the new Shazam.
  • Hot-Blooded: Easily has the hottest temper of the three, which gets him in trouble fairly often.
  • Keeping the Handicap: Writers over the various runs have struggled to explain him doing this in daily life rather than staying in Captain Marvel Jr. form at all times and simply changing into street clothes. The most direct explanation is that he feels as though "the meter is running" when he's invoked the magic and is in superpowered form.
  • Kid A Nova: Prior to his crippling, which is why Billy warns him away from Mary.
  • Ladykiller in Love: Both Billy and Mary worry that Freddy just wants to use Mary.
  • Legacy Character: His switch to the second Shazam.
  • Lighter and Softer: Over the course of the Fawcett run. He was originally portrayed as a Dickensian orphan, often without enough food to eat. By the late '40s he was depicted as the owner of his own newsstand (at age 14) and having a successful school life and friend group outside the Marvel Family.
  • Limited Wardrobe: In the Fawcett era his street clothes were normally a purplish-gray suit, but (in keeping with the above) it was drawn quite floridly ragged at first but looked respectably newish if still many sizes too big, albeit in keeping with the style for teenage boys in The '40s; it was considered iconic enough that he retained it into the DC revival era for some time after Billy and Mary adopted 1970s clothing.
  • Lovable Jock: In recent but pre-New 52 versions he was one of these before Captain Nazi mangled his spine. He lost his athletic ability and most of his friends.
  • Multiple-Choice Past: Owing to multiple reboots, the age at onset of his disability ranges from "sometime in the past at a point when his voice still hasn't shown the slightest tendency towards deepening yet" in Justice League: War to "old enough to have been a high school football star pre-injury" in Trials of Shazam. And since they were decoupled in one of those reboots, his age at onset of superpowers is even more complicated.
  • My Sister Is Off-Limits!: On the receiving end of this from Billy.
  • Nice Guy: Very friendly and polite, but with bit of a temper.
  • One Head Taller: than Billy in most incarnations, although Billy had caught up by the end of the Fawcett run and that held for the rest of the pre-Crisis era.
    • New 52 Freddy is back to being tall for his age; since he'd been disabled for years by the story's start, whatever happened to his legs hasn't affected their growth.
  • Ret-Canon: In the 2018 Shazam! ongoing series, Freddy's New 52 personality is retconned to match his movie persona, no longer being a high school conman and thief and instead becoming a superhero fanboy.
  • 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.
    • Alex Ross takes it a step further in Kingdom Come where Freddy (now going by the name "King Marvel") looks like Vegas-era Elvis without the drug and weight issues.
    • Jack Dylan Grazer curates a public Spotify playlist for all of his characters, Freddy's includes three Elvis tracks and is made up mainly of vintage rock.
  • Sidekick Graduations Stick: During the Trials of Shazam storyline, he graduated to becoming the new Captain Marvel.
  • Super Intelligence: Though of the three, he's the most likely to ignore the advice that Solomon gives him.
  • Super Reflexes: Very sharp reflexes.
  • Thou Shalt Not Kill: Though unlike Billy and Mary he comes close to violating it with Captain Nazi.
  • Unstoppable Rage: Enters it whenever he's around Captain Nazi. It takes Billy and Mary to hold him back.
  • UST: On and off with Mary.

    Shazam I / The Old Wizard / The Champion 
AKA: Jebediah of Canaan
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/shazamearth5.jpg

The former wielder of Captain Marvel's powers, Shazam is the wizard who granted Billy Batson his powers.


  • All Your Powers Combined: He formerly drew his strength and abilities from ancient gods: the stamina of Marzosh, the speed of Arel, the power of Ribalvei, the strength of Voldar, the courage of Elbiam and the wisdom of Lumian.
  • Antagonistic Offspring: He was tempted into sleeping with a demoness, which produced two demonic children who plague him periodically.
  • The Archmage: Shazam is the most powerful sorcerer in The DCU, bar none. So powerful he could actually hold his own against the The Spectre in a fight.
  • Back from the Dead: Several times.
  • Calling the Old Man Out: Superman does this in the “First Thunder” comic, when Billy Batson’s best friend is killed by Dr Sivana and sends him as Capt Marvel on a Roaring Rampageof Revenge that ends with him nearly killing Sivana. He declares that destiny has chosen Billy, but eventually admits that he is far too young for the job. He can’t take it away though, so he asks Superman to guide him.
  • Continuity Snarl: Somehow, despite Mamaragan's prominence in the Shazam ongoing series, the original wizard Shazam is among the Quintessence featured in Scott Snyder's Justice League run. Issue #39 of Justice League even has him addressed directly as Shazam.
  • Decomposite Character: Possibly. In the New 52, another member of the Council of Eternity has a closer resemblance to a younger Jebediah of Canaan.
  • Elderly Immortal: One of the oldest beings on earth, and immortal to an extent.
  • Ethnic Magician: Pre-Crisis, he was an ancient Egyptian. Post-Crisis, he's an ancient Canaanite. New 52 he's an Aborigine god.
  • Mage Tower: The Rock of Eternity is the ultimate example.
  • Mentor Occupational Hazard: In some versions of the story, Shazam dies as soon as he empowers Billy.
  • Old Superhero: Post-crisis he started out as a Flying Brick hero called the Champion 5,000 years ago.
  • Physical God: Very nearly. He could probably stand toe-to-toe with Darkseid if it came to it.
    • Heck, back in the 90's, one storyline actually had him become a New God, with all the powers that entails.
    • In the New 52, he actually is a god: Mamaragan of the Gunwinggu pantheon.
  • Race Lift: His New 52 incarnation is black (specifically Australian Aboriginal).
  • Spirit Advisor: His Pre-Crisis ghost can come back if summoned by a brazier in the Rock of Eternity.
  • Super Empowering: His main role is to give Billy Batson his powers.
  • Super Power Lottery: He has the exact same powers as the Marvel Family and near-omnipotent mastery of magic.
  • Wizard Beard: His beard is iconical, and yes he’s a wizard.
  • Wizard Classic: His classic pre-New 52 version ticks all of the boxes except for using a wand/staff. His New 52 version averts it by being more like an Aboriginal shaman.
  • Wizards Live Longer: Thanks to the powers of the gods, he is over 5,000 years old.

    Uncle Dudley / Uncle Marvel 
AKA: Dudley H. Dudley
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/uncle_marvel.jpg

A gray-haired man who decided he wanted to be part of the Marvel Family, made up a suit, and...the kids just kind of humor him and play along. As founder and president of Shazam, Inc. he is one of the few characters, almost certainly the only one in the Golden Age, to successfully monetize superheroism in-universe.


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    Mary Dudley/Freckles Marvel 
Uncle Dudley's adopted niece, who was an irregular companion of Mary Marvel's in her 1940s comic.

    Mister Tawky Tawny 
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/88cb8b95d369e279e9569e2e282fbcb4.jpg

A talking tiger. Originally a big cat in a remote Indian village who received a formula from an inventor hermit that allowed him to walk, speak, and think like a man; other continuities have since revised his origin, making him Mary's doll animated by magic, or a mystical guardian spirit that can take the form of both man and beast. In 2018 incarnation he is a resident of the Wildlands, which are populated by anthropomorphic animals.


  • Battle Butler: A polite servant to the family, who can kick ass.
  • 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.
  • Characterization Marches On: Tawny was much more of a reluctant and fussy would-be hero in his early days. More modern takes usually show him to be a debonair and polite, even tweedy, older man who's still not to trifled with and is much more willing to jump into the fray.
  • The Dandy: Depending on the writer.
  • 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.'"
  • Decomposite Character: There are two Tawnys in the post-Flashpoint universe; the first one to be introduced is a regular tiger who Billy gives some of his power to; the second is the Wildlands version.
  • Deadpan Snarker: He gets off some good deadpan snarks.
    Tawky: What can I do? I'm a tiger. You're the one who can fly.
    Captain Marvel: Thanks a lot.
  • Dom Com: Almost all of Tawny's Golden Age plots were (comparatively) slice-of-life in nature and brought on or escalated by his neurotic demeanor and personal crises, such as becoming self-conscious about the size of his tail.
  • Earn Your Happy Ending: In the 2018 series, he is despised in his homeland for being a tiger and for his refusal to kill or eat others, then is arrested, humiliated and told to kill Freddy and Darla, who he instead helps escape back home. At the Vasquez household, he is welcomed and accepted with open arms by everyone, becoming the newest member of the family.
  • Face Death with Dignity: Upon defeating Kalibak in Final Crisis he finds himself surrounded by his soldiers and calmly prepares to be executed. Instead, the entire army kneels before him as their new commander.
  • Fantastic Racism: In 2018 series he falls victim of it in his homeworld, as predators in general, and tigers in particular, are looked down at and feared by other animals.
  • 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 and a tiger from land not unlike that of Zootopia.
  • Half-Dressed Cartoon Animal: Subverted. He is fully dressed, and he even panicks when he's not wearing any clothes, saying he's naked (despite being, you know, a tiger).
  • Heel–Face Turn: It's all but forgotten today, but Tawky was a villain when he first started out, sort of a feline Gorilla Grodd. Heck, he even tried to murder people!
  • I Am Not Left-Handed: When the kid gloves come off, watch out.
  • Mr. Fanservice: In 2018 series he is stripped naked when he falls victim of Fantastic Racism from other animals. He gets his clothes back but not before the artwork lets the audience know several times that he is very muscular.
  • My Species Doth Protest Too Much: What actually lands him in trouble with the law in 2018 series. In Wild Lands Tigers are hated as vicious predators so he tried to be anything but....only for it to be deemed by other animals as defying the natural order.
  • Nice Guy: As par the course in the family-friendly, polite and respectful.
  • Panthera Awesome: A tiger who’s awesome.
  • Obscured Special Effects: He has never appeared in any live-action adaptation; The Adventures of Captain Marvel was made before his character was created and at a time when an actor in a tiger suit just might've been acceptable to audiences, Shazam! (1974) wrote him out entirely since by then it wouldn't be, SHAZAM! (2019) went with tiger motifs as a subtle reference since a $90M budget still isn't enough for him to appear in full CGI.
  • Older Sidekick: Older than the Marvels, and follows them around.
  • Supreme Chef: In the 2018 series, he's an excellent (albeit messy) vegetarian/vegan cook, and he takes great pride in his culinary skills, cooking large meals for the entire family.
  • Token Heroic Orc: The only citizen of Wild Lands in 2018 series who doesn't hate humans.
  • Took a Level in Badass: In Final Crisis, he kills Kalibak, the son of Darkseid, in single combat. Take note: He may be a kind-hearted dandy, but he's still a freaking TIGER.
  • To Serve Man: Defied in 2018 where the mayor of Wild Lands tries to force him to serve with other tigers as executioner, eating any human they capture. Tawny instead saves Freddy and Darla and escapes to another realm altogether.

    Marvel Bunny 
AKA: Hoppy
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/captainmarvelbunny.jpg

    The Lieutenant Marvels (Tall Marvel, Fat Marvel, and Hill Marvel) 
AKA: "Tall" Billy Batson, "Fat" Billy Batson, and "Hill" Billy Batson
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/lieutenantmarvels.jpg

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).


    Eugene Choi 
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/eugene_choi_prime_earth_0001.jpg

Making an appearance both in Flashpoint and New 52, Eugene is an orphan child who makes up the brains of the whole marvel family. Sporting an Asian theme and being a total brainiac he inherits the wisdom of Solomon as a part of Captain Thunder.


  • Asian and Nerdy
  • Magitek: His Technopathy is a combination of the Wisdom of Solomon along with him magically fusing with all of the electronic devices he carries on him at all times, turning him into a bit of a magical cyborg.
  • Odd Name Out: He's the only one of the kids not to have an Alliterative Name.
  • Ret-Canon: In the New 52, he's shown as a serious and very studious boy, the smartest in school by far (to the point that he sometimes corrects the teachers), and reads only non-fiction books; whereas in the 2018 Shazam! ongoing series, Eugene is an enthusiastic huge geek obsessed with video games, like his movie depiction.
  • Technopath: He can hear and speak to electronic devices, and even order parked cars to move out of the way.
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    Pedro Peña 
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/pedro_pena_prime_earth_0001.jpg

An unassuming gentle giant of Latino descent within a family of orphans and resident fat kid at Fawcett High School. Pedro assumes the Strength of Hercules when the marvel family comprise Captain Thunder in Flashpoint verse.


  • Expy: A loose one, of Fat Billy.
  • Big Fun: He's chubby, goofy and kind.
  • Fluffy Tamer: In the Flashpoint universe he hand-raises Talky Tawny (here, a normal tiger) by restraining him with his super strength.
  • Gentle Giant: A very nice and rather introverted big boy.
  • Power Makes Your Hair Grow: His Shazam form gains an impressive beard.

    Darla Dudley 
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/darla_dudley_prime_earth_0001.jpg

A young African-American girl who supports the Speed of Mercury for her Captain Thunder persona, she is the youngest and most bubbly sort within the family acting as the goofy yet lovable and hyperactive sibling within the marvel family.


    Victor & Rosa Vasquez 
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/rosa_and_victor_vasquez_prime_earth_0001_jpg.jpg

The foster parents of Billy and the rest of his foster siblings.


  • Foster Kid: Both of them grew up in foster care and take in foster children as well.
  • Good Parents: Victor and Rosa are genuinely kind and loving foster parents to all the kids. Having grown up in foster care themselves, they wish to ensure the kids under their care grow up happy in a stable home.
  • Happily Married: As happy married to each other as they are being foster parents.
  • Locked Out of the Loop: For a while, they had no idea that their six foster children were superheroes. This changes when Mary reveals it to them after her other siblings, sans Billy, were trapped in other realms and needed to be saved, and Mary was already feeling guilty about not telling them anyway. Fortunately, Victor and Rosa accept this and even lay some ground rules about superheroing that the children readily agree to.

    Nick & Nora Bromfield 
Mary Batson's adopted parents and guardians.

    Captain Thunder 
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/1815539_captthunder_super.jpg

Characters named Captain Thunder have made numerous appearances in various DC comics.

Before introducing Captain Marvel to the main DC Universe, DC introduced this expy as an ally/foe of Superman, appearing in Superman #276 in 1974. Willie Fawcett inherited his power from a Mohegan medicine man named Merokee, who then gifted him with a thunderbolt emblazoned belt buckle and the powers of various animals and natural forces. When he rubs the belt buckle and says the word "Thunder!", he transforms into Captain Thunder. Willie eventually went on to become the protector of his dimension of Earth-276 (named after his first comic appearance).

The Captain Thunder of the broken Flashpoint universe came to be when six orphan kids (Billy, Mary, Freddy, and three others) got on the same train at the same time, transporting them all to the mystical rock of eternity where the Wizard Shazam sat waiting for them Unable to give sole ownership of the power to just one child, Shazam divided the individual powers of their Superpowered Alter Ego to each of the six street urchins giving them a letter corresponding to the different attribute.


Pre-Crisis

Flashpoint

  • Alliterative Name: Yes for Billy Batson, Freddy Freeman, Darla Dudley, and Pedro Peña. Mary Bromfield and Eugene Choi, not so much.
  • All Your Powers Combined: Literally, as the six kids physically combine into a single hero, with Eugene's Wisdom of Solomon, Pedro's Strength of Hercules, Mary's Stamina of Atlas, Freddy's Power of Zeus, Billy's Courage of Achilles and Darla's Speed of Mercury.
  • By The Power Of Grey Skull: "S.H.A.Z.A.M!" must be shouted in unison
  • Flying Brick / Super Power Lottery
    • Flight: From Mercury.
    • Henshin Hero: Team S.H.A.Z.A.M speaks the word in unison, and combine into a single hero.
    • Nigh-Invulnerable: Extremely hard to damage, but Wonder Woman succeeded.
    • Shock and Awe: Captain Thunder has access to the same magic lightning as the classic version, with the same summon-and-dodge limitation.
    • Super Strength: Hercules' strength, as mentioned above.
    • Super Speed: Thanks to the speed of Mercury.
  • Fusion Dance: He's a composite being of the children's divine powers.
  • Good Scars, Evil Scars: Captain Thunder is scarred from an attack by Wonder Woman.
  • Mythology Gag:
    • This time to both the Pre-Crisis version and the original ashcan publication, plus to the original idea that Captain Marvel would be six kids until Fawcett comics had them cut it down to just one. It's also similar to the Rainbow Squad, a team of pre-crisis villains who each had one of Captain Marvel's powers.
    • Darla Dudley is a callback (combined with One Steve Limit) to Mary Dudley, aka "Freckles Marvel".
    • Inverted that these same kids would continue to be Billy's foster-siblings in the New 52.

    C.C. Batson 
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/c_c__batson_003.jpg

The father of Billy Batson (and in some stories of Mary Batson too).

  • Adaptational Villainy : The Rebirth incarnation is more unpleasant than any previous version in the comics, his Pre-Flashpoint incarnation being a good man who was a candidate for Shazam's power and his Pre-Crisis and New 52 incarnations being Deceased Parents Are the Best. This characterization seems to be a Canon Immigrant from Shazam!
  • Ambiguous Situation: How much of Mr. Mind's account is reliable?
  • The Atoner: Subverted, was sent to prison and wants to make amends for missing his family time. Except it was a lie as he was still a crook when Mr. Mind found him.
  • Bait the Dog: He never actually looked for Billy of his own volition. He was still a conman when Mr. Mind found him and made him his host.
  • The Ghost: In the early comics, he made a memorable appearance as a ghost who escorted Billy to the Rock of Eternity.
  • Meat Puppet: He is one for Mr. Mind, who has been controlling C.C.
  • Walking Spoiler: For the 2018 series where he appears, becomes the 7th member of the Shazam family, gets revealed as the host of Mr. Mind who then reveals he was just a conman who didn’t make an effort to find his son.

    Thunder 
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/thundercecebeck_6.jpg

A member of the Legion of Superheroes who wields the power of Shazam and has an elderly Billy Batson as her mentor.

  • Legacy Hero
  • Mythology Gag: Her identity is CeCeBeck from the planet of Binderaan (named for "Capt Marvel" co-creators C.C. Beck and Otto Binder)

Alternative Title(s): Mary Marvel

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