Marvel Reinvent Ms Marvel As Shape-Shifting Muslim Teen
Kamala Khan, AKA Ms Marvel, was born out of attempts to diversify Marvel's characters.
1960s comic book heroine Ms Marvel is ready to be revived for a 21st century audience. However, instead of bringing back a blonde haired, blue eyed, US Air Force officer with a very tight costume, Marvel have opted to reimagine Ms Marvel as a 16 year-old teenage girl named Kamala Khan who is, incidentally, a Muslim.
Khan is a 16-year-old high school student who lives in Jersey City with her Pakistani immigrant parents. This teen's life veers far from the ordinary though when she discovers that she can grow and shrink parts of her body and shape shift into other forms, The Associated Press reports.
However, Khan's inclusion is part of wider plan to diversify Marvel's comic output as well as help teach the American public about what it means to grow up as a Muslim girl in the United States. "She is going to be a window into the American Muslim experience," said Fatemeh Fakhraie, the founder of Muslimah Media Watch.
Fakhraie also noted that the cultural strengths in Ms Marvel would lie in her being portrayed as a teenager with ordinary problems. "Everyone has their problems, and they're just going to portray them as problems, not as Muslim problems," she said.
Though Kamala won't be the first Muslim character to have ever been added into a Western comic book narrative, she is the first lead character which represents a significant decision for the American publisher.
Yvonne Strahovski Was Rumored To Play Ms Marvel in 'The Avengers'
"I wanted Ms. Marvel to be true-to-life, something real people could relate to, particularly young women," said Ms. Marvel's editor Sana Amanat. "High school was a very vivid time in my life, so I drew heavily on those experiences - impending adulthood, dealing with school, emotionally charged friendships that are such a huge part of being a teenager," she told The Associated Press.
"It's for all the geek girls out there, and everybody else who's ever looked at life from the fringe," she added.
'Chuck' actress Yvonne Strahovski was rumored to play Ms Marvel in Joss Whedon's The Avengers, though the casting never materialized.