Ms. Marvel #1 Review

Overview

Ms. Marvel #1 tells the story of 16 year old Kamala Khan. She is an American Muslim living in Jersey City, New Jersey. Kamala is an imaginative young girl who, like any nerd, has a healthy obsession with her interests. But deep down, Kamala wishes she was just seen as a normal teenager.

She loves the Avengers and likes to write fan fiction on the web. When she tries to share her joy with receiving 1,000 upvotes on her work, it is lost on those around her. Then, when she asks her parents to go to a party, her father forbids her. But Kamala, just wanting to have fun and fit in, sneaks away. Upon arriving to the party, she realizes she made a mistake and heads home. On her way she is mysteriously surrounded by a dense mist and then has a strange interaction with her favorite Avengers. They grant her one wish, to be Ms. Marvel.

Analysis

G. Willow Wilson does a stellar job of introducing the reader to Kamala. As fellow comic book readers, and nerds alike, we can instantly relate to this young girl’s struggles. Kamala feels at odds with her fellow students, but really wants nothing more than to feel a sense of belonging. Wilson really gets that message across with ease. Already, as readers, we are instantly hooked with Kamala and Wilson has built enough to suggest there’s tons to mine with this character. She also skillfully handles the awkward interactions Kamala has with her white classmates, as some of them don’t fully understand her culture and, in turn, it creates a divide amongst them.

Sara Pichelli does the cover art, which serves as a perfect introduction of what to expect inside. This is because, like Pichelli, Adrian Alphona (our interior artist) is a master of storytelling through expressive character work. We immediately understand the complexity of these characters through their wide array of expressions.  His line work is lively and the result is art so realized that you are immersed right into the world represented on the page.

Ian Herring is on the color art and his palette is perfectly suited to Alphona. His colors are subdued, but effective. The result is a great looking comic book!

Thoughts

It’s about time we got a new female-led superhero title! And I commend Marvel for being brave enough to go with this character, Kamala. They definitely risked alienating some fans by introducing a new character, and rebooting the title, but I couldn’t be happier as a reader.

This book really feels like a labor of love by all those involved and that type of energy rubs off on the reader. I really like these characters already. I sympathize with them; understand them. I want to know more about Kamala and what is going to happen with her now that she got her wish. I got a hunch that it isn’t going to be everything she expected. But as for Ms. Marvel #1, it more than meets expectations.

Score

9.0

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