Monday, June 26, 2017

Captain Marvel Creates Marvelium!

The Periodic Table of Elements
You may have studied the periodic table of elements in school and may have had to memorize some of them.  The periodic table lists chemical elements like helium, titanium and gold.  New elements are added to the table as they are discovered by science.  However, in the pages of Captain Marvel Adventures #100 (published July 1, 1949*) we find that the periodic table of elements gets updated by Captain Marvel!  No, it's not scientists that update the periodic table, it is the World's Mightiest Mortal who has just created the world's mightiest element - Marvelium!

In fact, a total of three new elements are discovered or created.  They are Sivanium, Shazamium, and Marvelium.

Sivanium is the first new element.  It was created by Doctor Sivana, which he named in honor of himself!  Sivanium is living metal which can be "fashioned into human shape, duplicating every organ."  Sivana uses it to build an army of duplicate Sivanas!

Shazamium is the second element.  This element is still shrouded in mystery and all we know about it is from the wizard Shazam. He explains that it is an element unknown to earthly science!  With his bracelet made of Shazamium, the wizened wizard is able to adopt ethereal form and go back and forth from earth to the Rock of Eternity!  Not much else is known of this mysterious element, I presume it was created by Shazam himself!

Marvelium is the final new element added to the periodic table.  Marvelium was created by Captain Marvel himself and he uses it in this comic to foil the plot of Sivana.  Captain Marvel creates Marvelium in a lab using a cyclotron, the wisdom of Solomon, an atomic pile, and a mechanical brain machine.  In just a matter of moments, the World's Mightiest Mortal has created the world's mightiest element that can only be molded and shaped by him!

Not only does Captain Marvel create a new element, he even takes the time to update the periodic table of elements!  (I think it's pretty funny that he almost says "Shazam" when writing down Shazamium.  He catches himself and keeps from accidentally transforming back into Billy Batson!!)

Let me make a historical note concerning the periodic table that Captain Marvel has updated.  Cap makes Sivanium, Shazamium, and Marvelium numbers 97, 98 and 99 respectively on the periodic table.  Number 96 on the table, Curium, was discovered in July of 1944 at the University of California, Berkeley but was not made known to the public until November of 1945.  That's why Captain Marvel could assign the three new elements with the numbers 97 through 99.  It also must be noted that scientists created other elements in the 1940s (plutonium for example) using cyclotrons - just as Cap used a cyclotron to create Marvelium!  This gives me a greater appreciation for this comic and the obvious research done to bring some realism and current events to this whimsical adventure!

So now when one of your kids or family members need to study about the periodic table of elements, you can let them know about the three new elements introduced to us here in Captain Marvel Adventures #100!!

*According to Mike's Amazing World of Comics

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