In February, Marvel Comics finally dishes some diversity to an area of its base that doesn’t necessarily involve the X-Men. Kamala Khan is a plucky teenager from Jersey City, New Jersey. She idolizes Carol Danvers, the former Ms. Marvel who figured just being Ms. Marvel wasn’t enough so she settled on Captain Marvel. Khan is also from Pakistan.

And she’s also the new Ms. Marvel.

The story, set to be penned by G. Willow Wilson (a converter to Muslim in her own right) will center around Khan and her position as a heroine with shape shifting powers and the kind of identity crisis that most teenage superheroes seem to encounter (see Parker, Peter) and how her idolization of Danvers will ultimately play into her own role as a hero. “Captain Marvel represents an ideal that Kamala pines for,” Ms. Wilson said. “She’s strong, beautiful and doesn’t have any of the baggage of being Pakistani and ‘different.’”

Just from peeling back and looking at Khan’s backstory, it almost feels like every stereotype that can be lobbied against a Pakistani or even Muslim-American can be found, at least according to Marvel editor Sana Amanat. Her brother is super conservative (check), her father wants her to become a doctor (check), her mother is so against boys that she fears the touch of one in regards to her young daughter will result in pregnancy (check check). In other words, how hard can dealing with villains in the Marvel universe be compared to the labels she has to face at home?


Khan isn’t the first Muslim superhero but she is the first female Muslim superhero to have an entire comic book dedicated to herself. On the other side of the comic book war, DC Comics has put some of their own big named heroes in the same arena as Simon Baz, created in 2012 by half-Lebanaese born writer Geoff Johns is the first Muslim-American Green Lantern after the death of Hal Jordan and that character has seen enough changes to almost appease everyone.

This new incarnation of Ms. Marvel won’t have a problem considering its agenda and how it’s pushing a Muslim based lead. The hard sell comes from the fact it’s a female character in the Marvel galaxy not taken from the X-Men/Avengers story arc that people can instantly related to. But here’s the cute thing I’m wondering, why is she throwing her fist up at a porcupine with Hulk Hands?