Sunday, 19 January 2014
The Sound Of Thunder
"The last thing he hears is the sound of thunder..."
- Miracleman, no 1 (New York, 2014), p. 13.
When he whispers "...the word..." (p. 16):
"The whisper is drowned by the thunder!" (p. 17)
To immobilize armed terrorists, he merely claps his hands:
"He swings his hands together, and thunder bursts from between them." (p. 18)
When he describes to Liz Moran his vision of twenty-seven years previously:
"His vision becomes hers...In her vision she hears the deafening peal of thunder..." (pp. 21-22)
Why are there so many references to thunder? The thunderbolt is the weapon of a god. Someone who is not killed but empowered by a thunderbolt must be favored by the god. In Captain Marvel's case, two gods are involved in his transformation, Zeus, who wields the thunderbolt, and Mercury. (Zeus is the Greek name for the chief god and Mercurius is the Latin name for the divine messenger but pantheons are mixed to generate the acronym SHAZAM. Indeed, Solomon, for wisdom, is Biblical although the Greek wise man, Solon, could have been used.)
Back to the thunder: Miracleman, previously Marvelman, was a British adaptation of Captain Marvel who in his very first appearance was named "Captain Thunder," a name that was dropped for copyright reasons, although it was later revived, both by Roy and Dann Thomas (see attached image) and by DC Comics who, having acquired Captain Marvel, then parodied him with a "Captain Thunder" whose magic acronym was THUNDER.
References to thunder in Miracleman evoke both divine power and the earliest form of the pivotal Captain Marvel.