You Thought The Non-White Spider-Man Kicked Up The Racists? Wait Until They Meet The New Muslim Ms. Marvel.
I’m not very well qualified to take on the legions of comic book purists (read: racists) who have lost their collective sh*t over recent modernizations in the DC and Marvel universes. That sort of battle requires both a sassier tongue and a deeper appreciation for comic history than I possess. So I will point you to two of my favorite pieces from our site: this brilliant intervention from Brian Byrd and, of course, this absolutely crushing and weary screed from TK. This gist, racis-I mean, purists? Can it.
The nonsense over Miles Morales was pretty devastating. (“wats [sic] his main superpower, shoplifting?”)
So I cringe to think how the world will react when they hear that the new Ms. Marvel is a Muslim teenager from New Jersey. Or maybe I’m wrong. Maybe nobody will care. Maybe Ms. Marvel is marginal enough that it won’t matter. In case you don’t know, Ms. Marvel usually looks like this:
Which is fine, I guess, though not at all that distinguishable from DC’s Barbie Doll knock-off, Power Girl. The original Ms. Marvel (aka Carol Danvers) is a pretty cool lady who first appeared in the 1960s and was an officer in the Air Force. Rumor has it that Ms. Marvel will be involved in The Avengers sequel and that Emily Blunt and Ruth Wilson are being considered for the role. (Though the internet, unsurprisingly, favors Katee Sackhoff and Yvonne Strahovski.) In the Marvel universe, Carol Danvers has taken up the mantle of Captain Marvel. Which leads us to…
The new Ms. Marvel: Kamala Khan. She’s an American with Pakistani parents and has shape changing abilities. A Marvel editor explains: “Kamala will face struggles outside her own head, including conflicts close to home. Her brother is extremely conservative. Her mom is paranoid that she’s going to touch a boy and get pregnant. Her father wants her to concentrate on her studies and become a doctor.”
This is the first image Marvel has released:
Pretty rad. I can’t wait to see that cosplayed. Marvel has also wisely hired a young female Muslim writer, G Willow Wilson, to write Kamala’s story. I, for one, am thrilled to see the universe expand in this way and would hope that of all people, comic book nerds would understand the need to open their arms to a marginalized and often misunderstood portion of the population. If not, well, they can meet Kamala’s fist.
(via Bleeding Cool)