You Gotta Meet Miss Marvel

by - 10:39 AM

New Year, new me? Well, no. I'm still using this place to talk about some of the things I love most. Ever since I bought my first Deadpool comic last year, my love for Marvel comics has skyrocketed. The problem was that I didn't feel like plunging head first into a series on one of my favorite superheroes that's already well on its way. That limited my choice, yet it wasn't the main reason why I was quick to decide. Blogging was. From the very start most of my blog buddies have been South Asian, from Pakistan to be more specific. So when I learned that the new Miss Marvel is a Pakistani American girl I couldn't not start this series.
One day when I entered the local comic book store my eye fell on, no, was drawn to the cover of the new Miss Marvel series. It's simple, yet effective. I couldn't just let it stand there. This cover did exactly what it should: it caught my attention and refused to let it go.
The blurb on the back sealed the deal. It introduced me to Kamala Khan (and I'd be lying if I said she doesn't remind me of my Pakistani blogger bestie Kanra). Kamala is a Pakistani American girl who just wants to fit on. Maybe a bit cliche, but relatable for most of us. As the Terrigen Bomb goes off, the mists that result from it unlocks Kamala's powers as a polymorph, which basically means she can change the shape of her body into whatever she wants, whatever size she wants. Oh, and let's not forget about her healing factor, that one is quite useful as well. The great thing about this comic is that we discover these powers along with Kamala. Of course nothing is pre-established as it's the start of the series, but there are no annoying speech bubbles filled with an information dump like in the old Batman comics I used to read.
Over the course of the eleven issues gathered in this book we see Kamala learn to live with her powers, we see her become the new Miss Marvel and fight her first nemesis. This nemesis, the Inventor, seems quite ridiculous since he looks like a gigantic cockatoo. I'm not even kidding.
Excuse me, he's not a cockatoo but a cockatiel. Potato potahto, right? As ridiculous as this thing looks, it does have quite an unsettling plan: use millennials as clean and green power sources, 'cause we're an 'extra' generation anyway, there's too many of us on this planet and this way we can do something about overpopulation and the damage it does to Earth.
Now you may have noticed my use of the word 'we' in that last sentence already. That's not just because the villain specifically targets my generation, the story also plays with the negative attitudes the media has towards millennials and the way people like me experience their responsibility for the state of this planet. I can only give full points for the story.

So our hero Kamala is fighting a humanoid cockatiel (my god, it sounds even worse when I say it like that), but that's not why I appreciate her as a character. I mean, when I first saw Captain America I appreciated him because he punched Hitler in the face. Kamala is a different story. I didn't just relate to Kamala, I also looked up to her. Apart from her quoting Rumi, her own remarks were inspiring AF as well.
If I make art based on a quote, you know the book did something really well. The good thing is that Kamala doesn't just go around saying inspiring things, she actually puts her money where her mouth is and brings out the best in other people (like my friend Kanra!).
Apart from that I like Kamala's Pakistani heritage, which is handled with respect her (so to all the SJW's, calm down, it's not cultural appropriation). From what I know about Pakistani families, I guess I can say hers is quite accurately depicted.
Kamala doesn't hide her roots, which makes the comic so much more interesting for someone who is as interested in other cultures as I am. Cultural bonus points all over the place.
The only downside to this is the use of Urdu. Since I get stuck after 'Mera naam Envy hai, aap ka kya naam hai?' I couldn't do much with some of the Urdu. It doesn't hinder your understanding of the story at all, but if I hadn't known Kanra, I'd never known that a song sung on marriage festivals was mentioned in the book. To me, it was just a bunch of random Urdu words. That's the only flaw I could find though. Hats off to whoever did the cultural everything for this story.

Now there's one thing I haven't talked about yet. To me that things is the most important thing about comics: the art work. I've already told about the cover; I love it, simple as that. The style of the comic itself is more detailed than I'd expected. In fact, the details are what makes this comic just that much more fun to read. There's something tiny and funny to discover on almost every page.
I mean, how funny is that? No one expects to find a bunny with antlers next to an explosion.
So the art work is solid. It's good, it's detailed and makes me want to keep reading. The only weird thing is that the art style makes a switch about halfway through the book for two issues, then switches back. This style is more minimalistic, has more straight lines, less details. I can't say I prefer one style over the other though. The second one looks a little cleaner and is easier for my limited art skills to copy. The first one is more realistic and has great detail. So they're both great. Both work well with the story. I just don't think I'll ever get this switch in style.

So long story short: this comic book was amazing. It had a great story and Kamala is awesome. The villain was a bit odd, but the art and all the cultural aspects made up for that. On top of that it frequently made me laugh out loud.
Some familiar faces like Wolverine and Cap made an appearance. There was also a gigantic dog that only said HURRRH, which I found too funny not to share. More than enough reason to continue the series as soon as my next paycheck comes in!

x Envy

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16 Fellow Ramblers

  1. I've never actually read a comic book before (unless the Beano aged like 10 counts?!) but this post has really intrigued me! I absolutely love the illustrations, the art is fabulous! I can definitely see why it kept you so engaged! Thank you for sharing, I definitely need to give comic books a go!

    Abbey 😁 www.abbeylouisarose.co.uk

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    1. I guess that counts, because I counted Donald Duck comments too :P
      I could talk about the art for ages. I'm actually driving people around me crazy because I keep shoving the book under their noses to point some cool detail out, hahaha. I hope you enjoy reading comic books when you give them a try :)

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  2. I'm definitely a comic book girl, so I have to pick this up! Starting in the middle of storylines or trying to catch up is so exhausting with comics. I can't pass up an opportunity like this. It sounds awesome!

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    1. Ah I wanna know what you think when you pick it up! It's just perfect if you don't want to catch up on years and years of stories. Actually it's perfection in all ways :D

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  3. I love Mrs Ms Marvel she's great isn't she! This is a really great post it's really refreshing to see someone write about comics 💖 - teaisawishyourheartmakes.wordpress.com 💖

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    1. She's the best! I'll post more often about comics :)

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  4. Good Work. And the wonder world of comics.
    Keep writing
    www.travelosthan.com

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    1. Thank you, I'll try to do more posts like this one!

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  5. I haven't read this at all but I'm guessing they've written Kamala pretty well :p It's really nice to see such diverse characters! How cool would it be if Kamala shows up in the Avengers movies though? xD

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    1. You should read it though! I don't think Kamala will be in the Avengers movies soon, because they're still establishing her place in the Marvel Universe in the comics, but if that happened it'd be awesome. If they get the casting right, that is, but Marvel usually casts the perfect actor for every role imo

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  6. This is possibly my favourite comic series! I've got every volume so far.

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    1. It's my favorite for sure, but I'm still fairly new to the game. I don't have all the volumes yet, mostly because I live in the Netherlands and my local comic book store is always a few volumes behind, but as soon as they have new volumes I'm going to buy them!

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  7. My love for Kamala knows no bounds, she's excellent. Have you read on?
    Cora | http://www.teapartyprincess.co.uk/

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    1. She's the best. I bought volume 2, but my country is a bit behind on everything comic book wise. As soon as I can get my hands on new volumes I'm continueing the series, because I've gotta say it's my favorite!

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  8. The only Comic I have ever read is the Beano too, as a kid. My son reads Manga books and got me into Manga films. I loved Howl's Moving Castle and Attack on Titan. I wouldn't say no to going to a comic con though. Would be an experience and I think fun. x

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    1. I actually got into comics through manga as well! I'm a Fullmetal Alchemist girl through and through, but I really want to read or watch Attack on Titan. Comic con is awesome, it's so much fun and the vibe's amazing ^-^

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