Carol Danvers grew up as the oldest child of three in a traditional Boston home, with a contractor father who believed in the merits of hard work. When he built their Cape Cod summer home, Carol insisted on working as hard as her two younger brothers, trying to make equal in her father's eyes. A voracious reader, she dreamed of becoming an astronaut and traveling to distant planets; as a teen she even hitchhiked to Cape Canaveral to view a launch there.
Her father however, could not accept women as men's equals, and when financial troubles meant he could only send one child to college, he chose middle child Steve despite Carol's superior grades. Carol graduated from high school first in her class and took a sales job. She turned 18 just a few months later, and the following day she turned her back on her father and joined the Air Force, intending to be a pilot and to get a college degree via the military. Her brother Steve's death in military action would eventually draw Carol back to her family, but she still never felt truly accepted by her father.
She quickly rose to the top of her Air Force class and was recruited into military intelligence (Special Operations) and trained as a spy. She accomplished many different missions and worked with other figures such as Logan (later Wolverine) and Benjamin Grimm (later the Thing), while oppressing others such as Victor Creed (later Sabretooth), and Natalia Shostakova (later the Black Widow).
NASA eventually requested her for an open position as head of security which she accepted, resigning from the Air Force bumping her to full Colonel at retirement. Becoming the youngest security captain in NASA's history, she became embroiled in the schemes of the interstellar alien Kree Empire. It was during this time that she met and eventually befriended the Kree soldier Mar-Vell whose enemies would soon be responsible for her future transformation. The next few months were disastrous as she was kidnapped by the alien robotic intelligence Cyberex and then hospitalized by a controlled Iron Man who attacked the Cape. The alien Yon-Rogg then kidnapped her while she was still concussed and eventually battled Mar-Vell. During this battle, Carol was knocked into a damaged Kree Psyche-Magnitron, a powerful device which could turn imagination into reality. Carol's genetic structure was altered effectively making her a half-Kree superhuman. She was unaware of this change for months.
Her successful career at NASA was severely damaged because of these recent events. Due to her continued inability to control superhuman incursions, she was removed and reassigned to a minor NASA facility near Chicago. Even this did not last as Carol was demoted to a mere security guard and returned to Cape Canaveral after the superhuman Nitro had raided the base. Due to her plummeting career, she resigned from NASA.
Now living off an accumulated salary, Carol wrote an angry tell-all expose on NASA, burning many bridges. The best selling book briefly made Carol a celebrity and she began working as an editor for Woman Magazine, a publication owned by the Daily Bugle. However, she developed a dual personality due to the Psyche-Magnitron's alterations. She would black out and become a Kree warrior, instantaneously donning a costume in which the Psyche-Magnitron had created for her to ease her body's changes.
She continued to experience these blackouts, but they did not stop her from pursuing her career as a writer and editor. She took the name Ms. Marvel after Mar-Vell. Her fragmented mind eventually recovered with the help and treatments of the extradimensional Hecate and the Kree Ronan the Accuser. She established herself as one of New York's premiere superheroes working with Spider-Man, the Defenders, and the Avengers.
Joining the Avengers
After working several cases with the Avengers, Ms. Marvel was invited to join the team during the Scarlet Witch's leave of absence. She quickly established herself as a valuable member, but left the team following a bizarre unwanted pregnancy caused by "Marcus", who claimed to be the son of Immortus. Marcus manipulated Carol into believing that she loved him and took her to his home in Limbo. However, Marcus' plot backfired when he discovered that he aged at an accelerated rate in Limbo. Carol learned how to use Immortus' time-traveling technology and returned to her time. Upon her return she angrily confronted the Avengers expressing her resentment towards them for falling for Marcus' lies and manipulation of her, allowing him to effectively kidnap her for future defilement at his hands.
Seeking peace of mind after the ordeal with Marcus, Carol relocated to San Francisco and chose not to resume ties with the Avengers. In a battle with the power-absorbing mutant Rogue, Danvers lost virtually all of her Ms. Marvel abilities, leaving her with only her augmented genetic structure. Rogue attempted to murder her afterwards, but Carol survived floating unconscious on top of the water under the Golden Gate Bridge. Spider-Woman rescued her and alerted the Avengers and the X-Men to Carol's plight. Rogue had drained her memories, most of which were restored by mutant mentor Charles Xavier. However, Professor X could not return the emotional bonds linked to those memories. During this period, Carol was a frequent ally of the X-Men -- Xavier's team of masked, mutant heroes.
Later, Carol was abducted by the alien Brood and subjected to an evolutionary ray that triggered the latent potential of her augmented genes. Thus, she became the cosmically powered mutate called Binary. No longer possessed of strong emotional ties to people and places on Earth, Carol decided to leave the planet and pursue new challenges as a member of the space-faring band of adventurers known as the Starjammers.
While Carol's body was in space her memories began exerting itself within Rogue's body. The experience began driving Rogue crazy. After going through the Siege Perilous Rogue and Carol were physically split (with Rogue only having her base powers and Carol retaining her powers). Gateway teleported the two away from the Reaver with Rogue ending up in the Savage Land and Carol on Muir Island. The Shadow King took control of Carol and sent her after Rogue. Carol was decomposing as there was only enough life energy to sustain one person. As Carol started winning Rogue began decomposing. However the fight ended with Carol's death due to Magneto interfering on Rogue's behalf.
Returning to Earth some years later, Carol exhausted her cosmic energies to save the sun. Her powers severely depleted, she spent months recuperating at Avengers Mansion. Now known as Warbird, she eventually rejoined the team. Carol overcame emotional emptiness, alcoholism, substantially reduced power levels and a formal court martial before her teammates to prove herself as an asset among Avengers. She proved herself on many missions and was instrumental in defeating the time-spanning Kang during the Kang Wars as a result of his son, Marcus Kang XXIII's attraction to her. Carol stayed to help on a few more missions but eventually left to work for the U.S. Department of Homeland Security where she was offered a high rank in one of the agencies.
She was one of many Avengers who opposed the Scarlet Witch during her breakdown and remained with them until they officially disbanded. A short time later, Carol found herself working alongside the New Avengers.
House of M
While Earth-616 was merged with the House of M reality, Carol experienced being the most popular hero on Earth, though she was only a 'Sapien' operating under the rule of mutants. Mar-Vell dubbed her as Captain Marvel as he lay dying.
As Captain Marvel, she tracked down a thief and fought a mystic named Warren Traveler before being 'awakened' by Emma Frost and Layla Miller. From there she joined the other heroes in their successful attempt to revert their reality.
The effect of remembering being the most popular hero had a substantial effect on Carol, who attempted to bring herself into the 'A-List' level of heroes by hiring an agent to market her.
Mighty Avengers Leader
Carol sided with Iron Man and the Registration Act during the Civil War. She and Wonder Man worked together in several capacities, such as chasing Julia Carpenter, a previous Spider-Woman, and the recruitment of the young Ara�a. After the war, she was given leadership over the Mighty Avengers; the New York branch of the 50-State Initiative. Carol aided her fellow Mighty Avengers Iron Man, Ares, and Wonder Man when they tried to stop the Hulk and his Warbound. She also convinced Iron Man to let her have a S.H.I.E.L.D. mini-carrier and be in charge of her own unit, Operation: Lightning Storm. They faced A.I.M. and M.O.D.O.K., amongst others.
Ms. Marvel was captured by the Brood on Monster Island, whereupon she found the Brood Queen.
During the chaotic Battle of Manhattan during the Skrull invasion, Ms. Marvel was shot down by Nick Fury, who was unconvinced that she was the real Carol Danvers. She recovered and fought bravely, killing many Skrulls and several Super-Skrulls single-handedly before leading a group of survivors with Agent Sum to the Raft.
In the aftermath of the Skrull Invasion, the entire original roster of the Mighty Avengers left the team, and Carol was no exception. Since S.H.I.E.L.D. was simultaneously disbanded, she was left without a job, and rather than stay solo, she joined the New Avengers. She adamantly refused to join Norman Osborn's team of Avengers. Officially, taking her place as Ms. Marvel on the Dark Avengers was Karla Sofen, aka Moonstone.
Later, Osborn attempted to assassinate Danvers, planning on make Sofen the sole Ms. Marvel. But Danvers was split into four energy beings, who used baby MODOKs to reconstitute herself. However, she had a separate alter ego named Catherine Donovan, who in proximity to each other, would allow Danvers to increase in strength. Donovan was created by the Storyteller in an attempt to give her wish of being free from her burdens. Eventually, Donovan was killed by Norman Osborn, and fused with Moonstone. After a great realization, Karla was able to will out Donovan from her mind thus completely merging Donovan and Carol together. During her fight with Karla, Carol removed the moonstone from Karla's body leaving her powerless. Seeing Karla powerless and lost, Carol decided to give Karla back the Moonstone if she were able to redeem herself.
Following the Siege of Asgard, Ms. Marvel remained a member of the New Avengers, and even admitted to being attracted to her fellow teammate Spider-Man. When the Serpent attacked the Earth, Ms. Marvel, along with Spider-Woman and Noh-Varr, went to confront the Hulk, who had become Nul, Breaker of Worlds.
War with the X-Men
When it was realized that the Phoenix Force was heading toward Earth, Ms. Marvel was part of the team sent to stall/take out the Phoenix Force if necessary at all costs. She encountered a resurrected Captain Marvel, who was revived by the Kree Empire using the M'Kraan Crystal in order to unite and protect all of the Kree against the Phoenix Force.
Mar-Vell along with all the other Kree and everyone powered by Kree energies are brainwashed into believing that the Phoenix brings their salvation. Vision manages to free Mar-Vell and the other Kree from the illusion but it is too late to evacuate the planet as the Phoenix draws ever closer to Hala. Mar-Vell realizes that the Phoenix is coming to claim the portion of its power that was used to resurrect him and still resides within him. He sacrifices himself to save Hala and the Phoenix departs for Earth. She realized what Mar-Vell meant for her and decide to take his legacy, becoming the new Captain Marvel in the aftermath of the war against the X-Men.
The Enemy Within
While investigating various plane disappearances with Monica Rambeau, she absorbed her in energy state in order to destroy a giant robot. Back in New York, it's discovered that she had a brain lesion which would cause memory loss if she flew. While searching for her apparently disappeared friend Rose with Spider-Woman, Carol and Jessica were attacked by the Grapplers. After defeating them (but flying in order to do it) one of them revealed her that Rose was in Central Park. When Carol arrived she and Thor battled two T-Rex and found Rose and a note with her apartment's direction. When she arrived with Spider-Woman, they discovered that someone had stolen a piece of the Psyche-Magnitron. A Brood ship suddenly appeared out of nowhere, and the Avengers, including Captain Marvel, battled them. Meanwhile, Yon-Rogg was revealed to be the one who had stolen the Psyche-Magnitron and solicited the Kree to transport it back to Hala. When they refused, he combined with the Psyche-Magnitron and claimed that he was going to reform Earth. The Avengers defeated the Brood but unknown to them a Kree Sentry appeared on Earth. The Sentries projected an energy field around New York when Rogg used Danvers's brain as a power source amplified by the field to recreate a Kree city in New York's sky. The Avengers planned to use Cap's shield to break the energy field, but Danvers instead flew to space to separate Rogg from his power source, which worked. Captain Marvel saved the city but suffered great brain damage in the process which cost her a big portion of her memories.
In order to rediscover herself, Carol decided to leave Earth.