The highly-anticipated ‘Ms. Marvel’ – the MCU’s first series with a Muslim superhero – has now been released on Disney+. Starring Iman Vellani in her first major film role as Kamala Khan, Marvel’s first Muslim headliner, and the series serves as a setup for the upcoming film The Marvels, out in 2023.
Sixteen-year-old Kamala is an artist, vlogger and diehard devotee of the Avengers generally, and Captain Marvel specifically. We meet her enthusiastically narrating her latest animated story about them.
Most of the first episode features her trying to persuade her parents to let her go to the Avengers comic convention a bus ride away, refine her Ms Marvel costume and placate the school principal when she is hauled into his office for her constant “doodling” and daydreaming.
Eventually, and with the help of her best friend, Bruno, (Matt Lintz) – who is also, handily, a tech genius – Cinderella gets to the cosplay ball. When she adds an old family bangle to her costume at the last minute, she becomes invested with the ability to shoot energy beams that take on sort-of-solid form and allow her to step on to platforms she can make ahead of herself in the air, as an alternative to flight or superspeed.
The bangle allows her powers to be tied to Kamala’s Pakistani heritage and the trauma of Partition in particular. It belonged to her great-grandmother, one of the many who went missing during that time and who appears to be backchannelling towards Kamala through her powers.