Meet Kamala Khan, Marvel's new Muslim heroine who is smashing villains and stereotypes
What’s more American than Marvel Comics?
A 16-year-old daughter of Pakistani immigrants living in Jersey City named Kamala Khan…that’s what!
You have now officially been introduced to Marvel’s newest super heroine, Ms. Marvel.
Yes, she’s a she.
Yes, she’s a teen.
Yes, she’s Muslim.
How awesome is that?!
The character is part of Marvel entertainments efforts to be more diverse, more global and more open to what their audience actually reflects. Geek girls have reason to celebrate, beside the fact the being a geek girl is just the “raddest” thing on the planet. If you don’t think so, take a moment to check out the latest female trends at last year’s comic-con. These ladies know where it’s at.
Here’s sneak peek for all you Marvel Comic buffs looking to set the stage for this up and coming young super-heroine Ms.
"Kamala, whose family is from Pakistan, has devotedly followed the career of the blond, blue-eyed Carol Danvers, who now goes by Captain Marvel, a name she inherited from a male hero. When Kamala discovers her powers, including the ability to change shape, she takes on the code name Ms. Marvel — what Carol called herself when she began her superhero career".
Writer G. Willow Wilson and artist Adrian Alphona, working with editor Sana Amanat, say the series reflects Khan’s colorful but kinetic world, learning to deal with, not only superpowers, but family expectations and the joys of being a teenager, according to an Associated Press report.
Move over Spider-Man, you’ve got nothing on the issues this young lady has to deal with in life.
Amanat calls the series a “desire to explore the Muslim-American diaspora from an authentic perspective” and what it means to be young and confused by expectations by others while also telling the story of a teen coming into her own acceptance of her having amazing powers.
“I wanted Ms Marvel to be true-to-life, something real people could relate to, particularly young women. High school was a very vivid time in my life, so I drew heavily on those experiences — impending adulthood, dealing with school, emotionally charged friendships that are such a huge part of being a teenager,” said Wilson, who converted to Islam. Her previous comics work includes the graphic novel Cairo and series Air from Vertigo, AP reported.
Like the real life version of young teens needing to adjust to their world around them, this Ms. Marvel can grow and shrink her limbs and her body and will eventually be able to shape shift into other forms.
This is not DC Comics first Arab experience with super-heroes. Last fall, the company re-launched its Green Lantern series with Simon Baz, a well-known Arab American Muslim. The character is written from the perspective of his writer, Geoff John, a Lebanese man growing up in the Detroit area.
Kamala is also not the first Arab woman featured in the comic either. Dust, a young Afghan woman who can manipulate sand has been a long running part of the X-men series. In late 2010, DC Comics introduced Nightrunner, a Parisian raised Muslim Algerian.
“Kamala is not unlike Peter Parker,” said Marvel editor-in-chief Axel Alonso of the teenager turned Parkour pro. “She’s a 16-year-old girl from the suburbs who is trying to figure out who she is and trying to forge an identity when she suddenly bestows great power and learns the great responsibility that comes with it.”
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