Someone’s creating a new superhero, which means it must be a day of the week ending in “y.” But Marvel Comics’ announcement about a new Ms. Marvel series deserves special attention. The company announced in a press release today that the new Ms. Marvel will be a superhero of the Islamic faith — the first-ever Muslim title character from Marvel Comics and pretty much the first Muslim superhero from the mainstream comic publishers to get her own monthly book. (Although last year DC introduced Simon Baz, a new Green Lantern who’s currently a member of the Justice League.)
According to the press release, the new Ms. Marvel’s real name is Kamala Khan, a 16-year-old from Jersey City. “Kamala has all of her opportunities in front her and she is loaded with potential, but her parents’ high expectations come with tons of pressure,” Marvel describes. “When Kamala suddenly gets powers that give her the opportunity to be just like her idol, Captain Marvel, it challenges the very core of her conservative values.”
The “Ms. Marvel” name previously belonged to Carol Danvers, a blonde Air Force badass who got fused with Alien genes and developed superpowers. Danvers is now known as Captain Marvel, not to be confused with the Captain Marvel who died in the ’80s or the Captain Marvel from DC Comics who everyone just calls Shazam. (Comic books!) The new Ms. Marvel will feature in a special issue in January before her series begins in February. Which means we only have a couple months to decide: Is America really ready for a superhero from New Jersey?