Welcome back from the intermission!
(Act One & Two are here.)
ACT THREE— Our big number here is “The City Needs a Hero” with Mr. Tawky Tawny Chorus-ing it up as Captain Marvel performs various acts of do-goodery, mirroring Billy Batson’s opening number from before. There’s even some of that sadness from before, too. His heroic acts are also a search for Dudley and Freddie, and he still feels as lonely as before.
Before he can be too glum, the song reprises almost immediately, into the “I Need a Hero” torch-song/lounge version, as Lust makes her appearance. Ultimately, however, a sultry dance number like that ends up lost on Captain Marvel, who of course is really a boy at heart, and he transforms back into Billy! His longing is for something more meaningful. He wants a family, and for now, the City will have to do. That sense of security is enough to melt Lust, and Mr. Tawny points out with pride that Billy has found the true way to defeat the Seven Deadly Enemies, by feeling their opposite.
Shazam! Mr. Tawny watches Marvel fly away, and the spirit of the Wizard suddenly appears, whisking Tawny to the Rock of Eternity– the same cave of wonders Billy had found himself in before, but this time, more of the statues are broken/crumbled. The Wizard’s spirit warns Tawny that Billy, like EVERYONE, must be true to their BEST self. Tawny turns mournful, and sings about his time as a true tiger, and about how he once dared to believe he could walk among humans. But it’s hard. He wonders “At What Cost”– is the price to continue furthering himself too much? Maybe it’s cheaper to give it up and return to what he once was.
Back to the Silvanas– where Freddie and Dudley have been captured and hidden away in a lab, guarded by Silvana and his animated robots, while Mary, a prisoner in a different way, cannot escape Beautia and her legion of maids.
Everyone sings “Is It My Turn?”, split in rounds and featuring their own plaintive hopes, or fears– Freddie wonders where Captain Marvel is and why he can’t be the hero; Dudley is ready to give up and doesn’t want to play anymore; Silvana revels in the power of tapped spirits; Beautia is ready to make Mary in her own image, the same she will do for the City as their mayor, and Mary is just … angry! Mary’s anger crashes the song into her own disruptive, tempo-changing number, “Stop Everything!” Beautia sends her maids-in-arms against Mary, but Mary is more than Mary– she’s become Anger itself, and escapes! For perhaps the first time in her life, Beautia wonders, did she do the right thing?
Mary/Anger emotions carry her through the City, alternatively reaching out/lashing out. Luckily, Captain Marvel is there! He tries to calm her/it down, staying on the defensive, but it seems futile. As the last effort, Captain Marvel will show his good faith by transforming into Billy Batson. Shazam! The lightening that restores his form also reveals Anger as Mary! There’s a connection there! He could share his transformative lightning, because she’s his long-lost sister! By sharing their common experiences, they realize “I Finally Found You,” and together, they can heal their loneliness, heal their anger. And together, they can find their way back to Silvana’s lab!
The reprise of “The Seven Deadly Enemies of Man,” with Silvana giddy like a child that he’s discovered the secrets of controlling life itself. Just like Mary, he begins the transformation so that Freddie can give in to his Envy, and Dudley his Sloth. There’s just one Deadly Enemy left….
But before that could happen, Billy and Mary try to sneak in. Mary points out the giant power source to try to unplug the various machines, but it’s too late, as Silvana is determined to bring Pride to life! Beautia wonders if it’s possible. Could Silvana have gone to far?! NEVER!!!
Bang! Crash! Emerging from the smoke and light, Tawky Tawny, the embodiment of Pride, in battle array! It’s true! Pride allowed him to transcend from being a mere jungle cat, and now Silvana has brought forth Tawny’s true power! The “The One True Deadly Enemy of Man!” Silvana demands allegience, and will send all he has animated against Tawny/Pride, even Freddie/Envy and Dudley/Sloth!
Billy knows what will really stop this. And with another Shazam, he shares his power– it’s Captain Marvel and Mary Marvel to the rescue. Captain Marvel and Freddie/Envy half-fight, half-talk through their issues, until SHAZAM! Freddie turns into Captain Marvel Jr.! Mary Marvel and Dudley/Sloth half-fight, half-slapstick, because, eh, it’s Sloth after all. Shazam! Dudley turns into Uncle Marvel!
Captain Marvel knows the only thing that can stop Tawny — a sacrifice. He changes into Billy Batson and pleads below the figure of Tawny/Pride, which actually pauses to regard this little hero. He would do this… for him? Silvana is horrified– he would not want to see such power destroyed; it is HIS to control! He rushes toward Billy with a power-sparking conduit, taunting him to shazam his way out of THIS. Captain Marvel Jr. manages to tackle Silvana aside, and Mary Marvel/Uncle Marvel pull the power like her original plan. Billy’s form is lifeless. Tawny/Pride shrinks, mourning the true sacrifice. Tawny has tried hard to avoid the pride that consumes him, and maybe, just maybe, Billy will let him do so again! COME…
Tawny has brought all to the Rock of Eternity, the statues of the enemies, except Pride, have all be restored. Tawny explains Billy’s selflessness has allowed Tawny to once again take up his OTHER self, as one of the Seven Great Angels of Man — Servanthood. With a touch, Tawny gives up his Pride-power so Billy can be healed! Happy reunions are cut off by the sudden blazing of braziers, and the spirit of the Wizard of Shazam appears! He affirms Tawny’s choice, and remarks how never before has the earth been guarded by FOUR Marvels. Truly, Billy Batson is the hero Earth has been waiting for. As for Silvana, he will indeed take the power of Pride, but will remain trapped here, taking the place of Tawny as the embodiment of Pride and transformed into a statue in his stead, with Beautia exiled to the Rock of Eternity to care for the statues as a price for her vanity.
The City rejoices. It’s the joyous final number, a rousing version of “The City Needs(Has) a Hero,” with Captain Marvel, Mary Marvel, Captain Marvel Jr., and yes, even Uncle Marvel over there. And at the end, Mr. Tawky Tawny invites the audience, too, to find the Marvel inside of each of them. Wink!