The Shazam Family's Lost Sidekick Has Returned To DC's Universe

The launch of the Shazam family's new book, The New Champion of Shazam! has reintroduced a long-forgotten sidekick. Mary Bromfield has moved out of the family home, has assumed the responsibility of being the champion of Shazam, and now, has been reunited with Hoppy, the Marvel Bunny.

In the 1940s, writer Chad Grothkopf first imagined Hoppy the Marvel Bunny, with the character premiering in Fawcett’s Funny Animals #1. Originally part of an ensemble of other zany animal superhero characters, Hoppy dreamed of being strong like Captain Marvel (who would later become Shazam). One day while trying to imitate his hero, Hoppy utters “Shazam!” and transformed into a superhero. Outside of Fawcett’s Funny Animals, Hoppy had a few crossovers with DC continuity. Before the Crisis events that would signify universe-altering shifts in continuity, Hoppy would help save the day a handful of times as Shazam's sidekick. Outside of the pre-Crisis stories, Hoppy largely remained a shelved character. A few times in the 80s Hoppy teamed up with Captain Carrot and more recently reappeared as Mary’s pet in the New 52.

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In The New Champion of Shazam! #1 by Josie Campbell and Evan "Doc" Shaner, Hoppy is presented as the pet of one of Mary’s new college roommates. Since Billy is no longer around, he enchants the creature nearest to Mary to deliver the message that she’s been chosen as the new champion. The enchantment leaves Hoppy with a few powers that help lead Mary on her new journey.

New Champion of Shazam! hoppy rabbit sidekick

Essentially acting as Mary’s sidekick, Hoppy not only helps to persuade Mary to assume this mantle but also helps her understand her new powers. Hoppy explains that there is a new danger facing the universe and Mary Marvel is the only one capable of handling it. After generating a portal to take Mary to a bank robbery in progress, Hoppy explains that Mary is significantly more powerful now that she is not sharing the magic with the other kids in the family. In the absence of her family, namely Billy, Hoppy fills the role of guide into being Shazam’s new champion.

Now that Mary is truly on her own at college, the introduction of her sidekick, Hoppy, provides an important dynamic in the narrative of the book. Mary needs a push to assume the role, even though she likely knows that it is her responsibility. Hopefully, Hoppy is a regular sidekick throughout the series, helping Mary on her adventures as Shazam.

The New Champion of Shazam! #1 is available now from DC Comics.

2022-08-14T20:08:00.000Z

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