- This page is for the New Earth version of Captain Marvel, Jr. for other versions go here.
|Real name:||Frederick Christopher Freeman|
Whiz Comics #25
As Freddy Freeman:
The Power of Shazam #3 (May, 1995)
As Captain Marvel, Jr.:
The Power of Shazam #7 (September, 1995)
As Captain Marvel:
Trials of Shazam #4
|Created by:||Jerry Ordway|
|Affiliations:||The Marvel Family|
Formerly The Outsiders
|Portrayed by:||Barry Gordon (Voice)|
Originally empowered by the powers of the former Captain Marvel, Billy Batson, who has been advanced to controller of the Rock of Eternity, Frederick Christopher "Freddy" Freeman has advanced to Magical Champion of Earth with the full powers and ability as the new Captain Marvel.
One of Captain Marvel’s punches sends the villain Captain Nazi careening into a lake. An elderly man, Jacob Freeman, and his grandson, Freddy, happened to be fishing in the lake near where Nazi has landed, and, not knowing who he is, lift the unconscious man into their boat to prevent him from drowning. Nazi immediately comes to, tosses Jacob into the lake, and knocks Freddy out of the boat with an oar. The old man immediately dies, but Captain Marvel is able to save an unconscious Freddy and bring him to a hospital.
Captain Marvel changes to his regular form of young Billy Batson, and is told by a nurse that Freddy is not expected to last the night. Billy then devises a better way to help the boy: he sneaks Freddy out of the hospital and takes him to the secret underground throne of the wizard Shazam, who first granted Billy the power to become Captain Marvel.
Billy asks the wizard to heal Freddy and save his life, but Shazam cannot, and instead tells Billy that he, as Captain Marvel, can pass along some of his powers to so that Freddy can live. Shazam disappears and Billy transforms back into Captain Marvel, just as Freddy awakens. Looking up, he exclaims “Why...it’s Captain Marvel,” and is instantly transformed into a super-powered version of himself. Captain Marvel tells him that he is now "Captain Marvel, Jr.". Unlike Billy, who as a youngster transforms into an adult Captain Marvel, Captain Marvel Jr. maintains his youth and resemblance to Freddy. additionally, he is clad in a yellow-on-blue costume with a red cape, rather than Marvel's yellow-on-red with a white cape.
Captain Marvel informs Junior that he cannot remain in his super-powered form at all times, but that he must allow his human form to heal as best it can. With that, Freddy once again said his mentor's name and returned to his hospital bed. Freddy remains permanently lame in his left leg and is forced to walk with a crutch (although Captain Marvel, Jr. bears no such impediment). As a result, Junior sought revenge against Captain Nazi, and the two repeatedly battled over the years.
Post-Crisis on Infinite Earths History
Origin: The Power of Shazam!
Post-Crisis, Freddy Freeman was an all-star student at the Binder school; an archetypical jock, he was also among the school's most popular and successful students. One of Freddy's friends was Billy Batson, Captain Marvel's alter ego, who worked as a boy reporter for WHIZ radio. At a WHIZ radio spelling bee hosted by Billy in , Freddy and Billy met Billy's long-lost sister Mary, whom Freddy immediately fell for.
Later, Freddy and his grandfather went on a fishing trip in the Fawcett Bay, while Captain Marvel was engaged in a battle with Captain Nazi. Just as in the Pre-Crisis origin, Captain Marvel knocks Captain Nazi into the lake, and the Freemans are attacked when they attempt to save Nazi. Captain Marvel intervenes and rushes both injured bystanders to a hospital. Jacob Freeman slips into a coma, and Freddy is found to have a severely injured spine and a broken leg.
The injured Freddy is taken to the wizard Shazam by Captain Marvel and Mary Marvel, who grant the boy the power to become Captain Marvel, Jr. However, Jacob Freeman dies, and Freddy goes on a rampage against Captain Nazi as Captain Marvel Jr. Nazi is eventually brought to justice after Mary gets Junior to calm down.
Junior got into a fight with Captain Marvel and quits the Marvel Family. He started a new life in New York, during which he joins the Titans team. He even saved Chain Lightning from a suicide attempt. A possible romance of Argent with CM3 was explored, but after a particularly horrible date (CM3 was unable to cover the bill), it was abandoned. At this time, Junior first began calling himself CM3 (short for "Captain Marvel Three", with Billy being CM1 and Mary CM2), so that he could identify himself without changing.
Outsiders to Infinite Crisis
Beginning in 2004, Junior once again went by the name "Captain Marvel Junior" (not "CM3"), and now wears a white cape like that of the other two Marvels instead of his traditional red one.
Captain Marvel, Jr. made a guest appearance to battle a new version of Sabbac, an old Fawcett Marvel Family foe. Junior was a member of the Outsiders for a while, although he was apprehensive about the team's dark tone. He and Marvel Family nemesis Sabbac, The Seven Deadly Sins, and Dr. Sivana all played major roles in the series. Junior, Captain Marvel, and Mary Marvel made brief appearances during the Infinite Crisis. One year later, Captain Marvel, Jr. is no longer a member of the Outsiders.
The Trials of Shazam!
When the wizard Shazam was recently killed, his (and Mary's) mystical powers were revoked. Now that Batson is the controller of the Rock of Eternity, it is only through overcoming a series of trials and judgments that Freeman will regain his mystical powers and succeed Batson as Captain Marvel.
Stripped of his former superhuman powers, Freeman is currently trying to prove himself worthy to possess all of Batson's former power levels. Each of the six "Shazam" gods -Solomon, Hercules, Atlas, Zeus, Achilles, and Mercury - would present Freddy with a "trial" (similar to the Labors of Hercules), which Freddy would have to complete successfully in order to be granted with that god's particular power. If he completes all six tasks, he will take on the name Shazam. Zareb Babak, a demoted necromancer, serves as Freddy's guide during his trials.
The current gods that give Freddy his powers are in no way related to the Olympian counterparts. They are known as the Lords of Magic, and simply share their names with them.
Trail of Wisdom: The first of these was the trial of wisdom set by Solomon. He had to withstand the pain of getting a magical tattoo placed upon his soul. The woman Rachel Zallman was Soloman himself in his mortal disguise. He survived the process and gained a better understanding of himself, in doing so he was granted the wisdom of Solomon (attainment of vast intellectual and mystical knowledge by overcoming).
At the same time, however, a dark organization known as the Council of Merlin are backing their own candidate, a Creole sorceress named Sabina. If Sabina wins the trials, then the power of Shazam will be lost to the Marvel Family and she will control it.
Trial of Courage: The second was the trial of courage set by Achilles. He had to combat against a "Hate Empath" which fed on the hatred of the people in the middle east. With the help of Achilles in the mortal disguise of a soldier he defeated the Empathic demon, though not before Sabina shot Achilles in his heel, killing him. Though Achilles didn't truly die but moved on to the next great warrior. For his effort he was granted him Captain Marvel's red and yellow outfit and the courage of Achilles (Near-Invulnerability).
Trial of Strength: The third trial of strength set by Hercules. He has to find a way of breaking Hercules out of jail, who in his mortal disguise faced off against medusa and her minions in the form of a gang of yakuza. He inadvertently killed passing innocents thus breaking the magical covenant for a being of his rank. Fate punished him by making Hercules mortal and thus he was subject to their rules, which meant jail time as well. Putting Freddy in a hard position before he could make his decision Sabina in disguise as a lawyer brought the head of medusa out to paralyze Hercules then forced him to bestow her the powers in his name. He did so but Hercules apparently doesn't take kindly to thieves so thus Freddy was been bestowed with the other HALF of the Strength of Hercules. Sabina and Freddy fight but are evenly matched. After she teleport's away before Freddy can take his winning shot, Hercules basically says he passes the trail but he can only truly be capable of all the power after he defeats Sabina.
Trial of Stamina/Healing: The fourth trial of stamina set by Atlas. Never took place. Sabina teleported deep underground to where Atlas held up the world and killed him with the Dagger of Three Faults to steal his power. In finding him Zareb has Freddy take Atlas's place, reluctantly Freddy does so and taking on the role is to much to bare, for the 3 minutes he wares the helm of Atlas seems like months to him, luckily Marvel comes and relieves him but not before warning him that he can only be away from the Rock of Eternity for 24 hours. Freddy and Zareb then go to a local hospital to speak to the mortal disguise of Apollo, so that he may take Atlas' place as the next in line. Apollo refuses but then decides on giving Freddy his trial, a simple fight if he loses his life is forfeit and if Freddy wins he gets Apollos' power. They fight while elsewhere Sabina takes control of the Council of Merlin. When lives of innocent are put into danger Apollo saves them and relents to become the new holder of the world. In becoming a god again he relinquished his mortal life as if it never happened, with the realization Apollo upset over his loss of mortal life, thus Freddy has been bestowed with only HALF of the Healing of Apollo. Only truly capable of all the power after he gets a replacement for him as Atlas's replacement.
Trial of Speed: The fifth trail of speed set by Mercury. Never took place. Sabina killed hundreds of elves to learn a piece of information to find mercury, she then tore through a couple more people to get the rest of the information. All this led to Tawky Tawny who fights Sabina and has the upper hand until his inclination to talk gave her a the necessary information she needed to take him down. Before she could do so Mercury revealed himself just as Freddy arrived forcing him and Sabina to go after him. At this point Freddy lost on options for the trials he was failing calls along with Marvel and Zareb on the Shadowpact and Zatanna for aid in searching for Mercury in the hopes that he finds him so the Sabina doesn't. Meanwhile Sabina and the Council of Merlin find Mercury's mortal children and threaten their lives forcing Mercury out of hiding. He succeeds in using his speed to save his daughter but his son is chained to Sabina and she uses the Dagger of Three Faults to take his power. Without the power they are on equal footing, thus Freddy plays the last card he has and calls on on the Justice League of America for help.
Trial of Power: The sixth trail of power set by Zeus. Marvel and Freddy knowing full well that if Sabina gets the power of Zeus can take the rest from Freddy. Though at the same time they know Zeus will never give her the power willingly so she has to magically compel him to do it. The only way for her to do so is by using old magic, namely a Blood Spell, she has to sacrifice one million people. Meanwhile Sabina and the Council of Merlin asks for the backing of Merlin himself in return Sabina as the Acolyte of the powers of Shazam promises to be Merlins' Champion and corporeal anchor to the earth realm. In the battle a portal opens in Las Vegas and demons pour through killing all in their path and transforming them in to demons as well. The spell is two fold if one million souls are killed and taken then Merlin gains a foothold in this reality and is then empowered to compel Zeus to award the powers of Shazam to Sabina. The Justice League fights the demons and Freddy fights one on one with Sabina, and tells her of how his plan is to allow her to beat him up so he can get her closer to the emergsion portal she opened. If he throws them both through the one way portal they will be destroyed all the suffering she has caused that day will be undone. Also the powers of shazam will be lost to all, Freddy sees this a more fitting then allowing her and evil to wield them and destroy the earth. In making this decision of self-sacrifice and bravery he had appeased the Fates and Zareb revealed himself as Zeus all along. Having seen this Zeus as Lord of the Gods of Magic and Gatekeeper of the Power of Shazam, giving Freddy his power as well as the rest of the powers Freddy hadn't possessed but were possessed by Sabina. In saying "Shazam" Freddy was bestowed the full power of Shazam and Sabina was sent flying into the Emergsion portal, and destroyed taking her army of demons with her.
Afterwards Freddy talks to Zareb, who explains that he needed an anchor to the Realm of Earth. In Freddy proving himself, Zeus could reclaim his Terran province, So that he may return to his full power. Freddy apologizes for giving him a hard time during the trials to which Zareb says it wouldn't have been as much fun. Zareb tells him that his days of chasing criminals are secondary, he is now needed to protect the world, to keep the darkness at bay. To keep magic in balance.
After the Trials
Freddy talks with Tawky Tawny about the current events plaguing the Marvel Family, Billy is gone and Mary is missing. He then contemplates about asking Black Adam for help and transforming into Shazam permanently. Later he gets an invite for Article X by Alan Scott which is actually a Superhero Draft. He joins most of Earth's heroes in the JLA's Hall of Justice.
After the activation of the Anti-Life Equation, Freddy fights his way to Kahndaq to reach Black Adam to have him rejoin The Marvel Family, only for Black Adam to tell him he was unsure as the New Gods have overthrown the Lords of Magic and that as their champions they are at their weakest. Ultimately, Black Adam agreed to help, and joined Freddy and Tawny during the assault on Bludhaven. Almost immediately, Adam begins trying to kill Mary, who was part of Darkseid's forces. Adam said he looked into her eyes and didn't see Mary, but a leering old man. Throwing Adam aside, Mary attacked Freddy, saying that she had a new magic word. As the battle continued, Mary focused her attentions on Supergirl, but Freddy was able to grab Mary and shout "Shazam", changing them both and supressing Desaad. Now in control again, Mary was horrified at her actions, saying she could never change back again, as Freddy told her it wasn't her fault.
When Black Adam stripped Batson of his powers as Guardian of the Rock of Eternity, Freeman was able to cotinue accessing his magical powers. But with the return of the Wizard Shazam (Justice Society Vol 3 #25), it was shown that Freemman' superhuman powers remains as Freeman was selected as the direct champion of the six gods by them rather than through the Wizard Shazam. It remains to be seen if the Wizard Shazam will challenge the gods to remove/reduce or change Freeman's powers as the Wizard's statement of "dealing with Freeman".
Freddy's parents were sent to prison so he went into care and was fostered by the Vasquezes. He is shown to be mischievous and still requires crutches to walk. He has blond hair in this continuity, a change reversed for the movie.
The New 52/DC Rebirth
Black Adam confronts the newly created Shazam Family, including Freddy Freeman (far right), as seen in Justice League (vol. 2) #21 (August 2013). Art by Gary Frank.
In September 2011, The New 52 rebooted DC's continuity. In this new timeline, Freddy Freeman is reintroduced in 2012's Justice League #8 as part of Billy's new foster family along with Mr. and Mrs. Vasquez, Mary Bromfield, Pedro Pena, Eugene Choi, and Darla Dudley. Freddy is now depicted with blond hair instead of black, and has been disabled at least since early childhood. He is the good-natured "prankster" of the foster home, prone to mischief and pick-pocketing.
The first of the Shazam kids placed with the Vázquez family in Philadelphia, Freddy was placed into foster care after his parents went to prison, and he has not seen them since age 10. Despite Billy's standoffishness when he is first placed with Freddy and the Vázquezes, Freddy ends up befriending his new foster brother – despite swiping his wallet when they first met. Freddy is also the first person to learn that he has the power to become Shazam.
In the finale of the series of Shazam! backups in Justice League #21, Billy shares his powers with his foster siblings. Afterwards, by saying "Shazam!", Freddy becomes an adult superhero with shoulder-length blond hair and the traditional "Captain Marvel, Jr." color of blue for his costume. When he first gets his powers, Freddy remarks that he wants to be called "King Shazam," a nod to the character's connection to Elvis Presley.
Powers and Abilities
Power of Shazam: In order to access his magical powers, Freeman must be able to call upon the collected name of the six gods who directly empower Freeman, thereby invoking spells involving the energies of those extra-dimensional beings once known as "the gods of Earth". Since the "Book of Magic" (source code of the magical energies that the Wizard Shazam and Batson access) have been rewritten, Freeman is able to say the word "Shazam" without being transformed with a bolt of lightning.
Thus the magical abilities and powers will not come to Freeman by simply letting the word of "Shazam" fall out his mouth. Freeman must directly and specifically invoke the magical incantation to bring the powers forward and they will come forth with his command. This spell enpowers Freeman and completely heals his mistakes including his lame legs allowing him to walk but only in his empowered form. When Freddy Freeman commands the magic word "Shazam!", Freeman is empowered though does NOT change his physical appearance. In his empowered form, Freeman possesses the following superhuman and superpowered attributes:
- S for the Wisdom of Solomon: In his empowered state, Freeman has instant access to a vast amount of scholarly knowledge. The "wisdom of Solomon" also gives Freeman clairvoyance and provides him with counsel and advice in times of need. He has knowledge of all languages, ancient and modern, and could hypnotize people through this power.
- Superhuman Knowledge: In his empowered state, Freeman has exceptional photographic recall and mental acuity allowing him to read and decipher hieroglyphics, recall everything he has ever learn, solve long mathematical equations instantaneously and make intuitive guesses based on limited data to the point his guesses are almost always correct.
- Clairvoyance: an uncanny awareness of his circumstances that allows him to turn disadvantages into advantages, an understanding of divine interactions with the mortal world.
- H for the Strength of Hercules: Formerly, while empowered by Batson's powers, Freeman was able to access a portion of Batson's full powers ;still sufficent enough to lift 100 tons . Now as Batson's successor, Freeman is able to access the full power of the spell for himself as Batson did when he was the sole accessor of the power. In his transformed state, Freeman possesses the strength possessed by Captain Marvel's "Fully Powered" state. This puts his lifting capacity in excess of 100 tons with minimal effort.
- Being the sole accessor of the powers, Freeman has the same strength levels that Batson did as the former Captain Marvel.
- Superhuman Strength: Olympian flesh and bone is about three times as dense as similar human tissue, contributing to the Olympians' superhuman strength and weight.
- A for the Healing of Apollo: Like the stamina of Atlas, the body can purge itself of the poisons of fatigue and can mend the wounds that Achilles's gift can't protect him from. Shazam can withstand and survive most types of extreme physical assaults.
- Superhuman Stamina: His Olympian metabolism provides him with far greater than human endurance in all physical activities.
- Self-Sustenance: Additionally, he does not need to eat, sleep, or breathe and can survive unaided in space when in empowered form.
- Healing: can mend the wounds and heal him from high damage.
- Z for the Power of Zeus: Zeus' power, besides fueling the magic thunderbolt that transforms Freeman, also enhances Freeman's other physical abilities, provides physical invulnerability and resistance against most magic spells and attacks, and allows for inter-dimensional travel. Freeman can use the lightning bolt as a weapon by dodging it and allowing it to strike an opponent or target. The magical lightning has many uses, including creating apparatus, restoring damage done to Shazam, or acting as fuel for magical spells.
- Magical Resistance
- Physical Enhancement
- Inter-dimensional Travel: This can only be used to travel to the Rock of Eternity
- Spell Source
- Advanced Healing
- A for the Courage of Achilles: Like the wisdom, this aspect is primarily psychological, and gives Freeman superhuman amounts of inner strength from which to draw.
- Superhuman Inner Strength
- Near Invulnerability: If he were somehow wounded, his godly energies would enable him to recover with superhuman speed. It would take an injury of such magnitude that it dispersed a major portion of his bodily molecules to cause him a physical death. Even then, it might be possible for a god of significant power, such as Zeus, Poseidon and Apollo or for a number of Olympian gods of equal power working together to revive him.
- M for the Speed of Mercury: By channeling a portion of Mercury's speed, Freeman was formerly capable of flying and moving at hypersonic speeds exceeding Mach 10 (2 miles a second) while in earth's atmosphere. Now with the full power of Shazam he can move much faster and is capable of near-light speeds travel while in space. Hermes Trismegistus (Greek for "thrice-great Hermes"), an occultist aspect of Hermes/Mercury, also gives him the ability to wield magic and cast spells, though Freddy like Billy before him has yet to use this as Shazam.
- Super Speed: He can move at incredible speeds, possibly equal to Superman. He can move fast enough to not register in the normal peripheral range of humans and seemingly vanish and disappear at will. At this speed, his mind processes information on par to a computer or at least on a subliminal level that he is aware of his surroundings.
- Flight: Freeman can also mystically fly through the atmosphere through sure act of will, enabling him to soar through the atmosphere at sub-orbital levels and travel across the planet. He is immune from the effects of extreme height, such as dizziness and lightheadedness. With effort, he can travel from the earth to the moon, but he requires extra-precautionary paraphernalia for interstellar travel. Thanks to the power of Mercury Freeman can fly at close to light speed through space.
- Sorcery: unused by him but allowing for the ability to wield magics and cast spells.
Soul Tattoo: Freeman has been inscribed on his back an ancient magical scripture imprinted on his skin which provides protection and passage through much of the magical realms. It is truly a tattoo written on his soul. This was given to him by Solomon in his mortal form of Rachel Zallman.
Power of Captain Marvel (formerly): Originally Freeman possessed a portion of Captain Marvel's powers from Batson's transformed state himself. This was shown as Freeman would invoke the magical phrase "Captain Marvel" and become magically transformed into a super-powered version of himself. While incredibly powerful, Freeman only had a portion of Batson's Captain Marvel powers and strength levels. He was at least strong enough to lift 100 tons and fast enough to move at hypersonic speeds.
Unlike Batson and the current version of Mary Marvel, Freeman does not change physical form when he becomes empowered. Unlike Batson, Freeman would not transform into an adult and retained his same facial features while empowered. The only noticeable difference was that in his transformed state, Freeman is no longer crippled.
- At present, Freeman possesses all of the same powers that Batson had as Captain Marvel.
- Class 100+; In his normal state, Freeman has the strength level of a normal human male who engages in moderate regular exercise. In his transformed state, Freeman possesses the strength possessed by Captain Marvel's "Fully Powered" state. This puts his lifting capacity at least around 100 tons with minimal effort.
- Magic: High level magics can prove a determent to him and effect him more then any other force.
- Lightning: lightning has the effect of transforming Freeman from his empowered form to his normal human form.
- Paraplegic: in his normal human form, Fred has limited mobility due to his lame leg.
- Soul Tattoo
- Various magical devices and elements that the six gods have afforded Freeman
- He appears in the comic book Tiny Titans, there was the joke that when he introduced himself as Captain Marvel Junior he went back to normal because he technically said "Captain Marvel". Then he transformed again and said they can call him Freddy Freeman.
- In an issue of the DC Super Friends comic book, the characters were hosting a girl with a disability at the base, and they started talking to her about some people who have a disability in their legs they know. One of those people was Freddy, Captain Marvel Junior.
- Billy Batson and the Magic of Shazam!: Freddy Freeman first appeared in issue 13 of this book; he was shown crippled and in a wheelchair, the result of being inadvertently injured in a previous battle involving the Marvels. At a museum, he accidentally witnesses the Batsons transform and tells Theo Adam the magic word they used to transform back into Black Adam. Theo Adam then talks Freddy into becoming a Marvel as well, so he can do everything including walk again. He then transforms into Black Adam Junior and attacks the Marvels.
However, Freddy soon realizes Black Adams' evil, rebels and makes partial peace with the Marvels, although he keeps aloof from them. However, Captain Marvel was later traumatically drained and aged by the supervillain, The Vampire Burglar, Mary Marvel and Tawky Tawny came to Freddy in desperation to help them get the Captain to the wizard Shazam's chamber. With much persuading, Freddy agrees but they encounter Black Adam there, having claimed Shazam's power for himself. Although Shazam soon reappears, the battle against the renegade is complicated by the fact that the only way to help Billy is give him his Shazam power as Black Adam Jr., which would permanently strip himself of it. With much consideration, Freddy agrees and restores Captain Marvel. When Marvels inquire how they can make it up to Freddy for his sacrifice, Shazam suggests Captain Marvel that his name has great power of its own. Inspired, Captain Marvel gets Freddy to speak his name and, upon doing so, the boy is bestowed the power and form of Captain Marvel Jr.. This version is apparently able to say his own name without an unwanted transformation and his costume emulates the Captain's by being looser than the tradition costume, complete with a lapel.
In Other Media
- Along with the rest of the Marvel Family, Captain Marvel Jr. appeared in The Kid Super Power Hour with Shazam! voiced by Barry Gordon.
- Captain Marvel Jr. appears in the Batman: The Brave and the Bold episode entitled "The Malicious Mr. Mind!" voiced by John DeVito.
- A parallel earth version of Captain Marvel Jr. named "Captain Super Jr." appears in Justice League: Crisis on Two Earths voiced by an uncredited Bruce Timm.
- He plays a major role in the upcoming 2019 Shazam movie, played by Jack Dylan Grazer.
- As noted above, when in his Magically Enhanced state, Freddy is not impeded by his injured/handicapped leg.
- Unlike Batson, Freeman does NOT receive his powers from the Wizard Shazam but directly from the six gods as their direct champion. This has allowed Freeman to continue using these magical powers after the Wizard revoked Batson's powers and abilities. It remains to be seen if the Wizard will directly challenge Freeman and try to harm Freeman in order to remove his powers as well.