Ranya Merchant — Editor-In-Chief
Marvel dropped a trailer for “Ms. Marvel,” an upcoming Disney+ series that features Marvel Studios’ first Muslim superhero.
The newest Marvel limited series, set to release June 8, follows Kamala Khan, a 16-year-old Pakistani American girl from New Jersey who struggles to fit in at school and home until she’s endowed with superpowers. The six-episode series follows Kamala, played by Iman Vellani, as she obsesses over superheroes and writes fan fiction about them, particularly the Avengers and Captain Marvel.
The trailer shows glimpses of Kamala’s life — including praying at a mosque, attending high school, and daydreaming about boys — before showing how it transforms with her new superpowers.
Kamala’s powers eventually give her the ability to create energy stepping stones and throwing punches with a large energy fist. Her blue-and-red suit looks similar to Captain Marvel’s — and Kamala is set to appear in the “Captain Marvel” sequel “The Marvels,” which is scheduled to be released in February.
“Here’s to creating stories that represent all shades of superheroes. The future is in her hands,” said Obaid-Chinoy, one of the four directors working on the project.
Vellani says Pakastani and Muslim representation from Marvel is a big step forward. “The fact that the show is being made and they’re including this character in the MCU is [what’s important],” said Vellani.
“I don’t really have to go out of my way and talk about being a Muslim and being Pakistani — it all comes out in the show. People seeing a person like me involved in a project as big as this is, I think, inspiring enough,” she added.
Over the last few years, Marvel has been the subject of criticism for the lack of diversity in its films. More recently, the studio has incorporated a wider range of characters. Notably, Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings earned significant critical praise.
Junior Malika Angaian says she is excited about the show’s release. “I think it’s always a good thing when diversity of any kind is encouraged by large companies like Marvel. And, as a longtime Marvel fan, the show looks extremely promising,” said Angaian.
Junior Alejandra Aguilar says the trailer has piqued her interest in the show. “If the show ends up being as cool as the trailer was, I’ll watch it for sure,” she said.
Still, some Marvel fans are upset about Kamala Khan’s new powers. Based on some early promotional art for the show, fans are theorizing that her superpower in Disney+’s adaptation will differ from the comics, making her giant fists a CGI energy weapon instead of embiggened parts of her actual body.
“Kamala’s powers aren’t just about punching. Her origin story ties into the comic’s exploration of race and identity,” said writer Gavia Baker in a Dailydot article.
Regardless, many fans are excited for the show to release on June 8 to see what changes Disney+ will make to the classic comic story.