Who is Ms Marvel? What are her powers?


Kamala Khan, aka Ms. Marvel, is a Muslim Pakistani-American teenager from New Jersey. She possesses latent Inhuman lineage activated by the Terrigen Bomb. When she was exposed to the Terrigen Mist, she became a polymorph with the ability to stretch her body in almost any way imaginable. Kamala was a huge fan of superheroes, especially Carol Danvers, the former Ms. Marvel. She went on to become the newest holder of the Ms. Marvel identity.

History

Kamala was born in Jersey City, the daughter of Yusuf Khan and Muneeba Khan. Her parents and her older brother, Aamir Khan, moved to the United States from Karachi, Pakistan. In kindergarten, Kamala met Nakia Bahadir, who became her best friend. Like Kamala, Nakia was a practicing Muslim and the daughter of immigrants.

Kamala found solace with her two best friends, Bruno and Nakia, something she sorely needed. Though proud and respectful of her heritage and faith, Kamala always felt different and was often mocked by her other peers for her nerdy interests and strict parents. In addition to her friendship with Nakia and Bruno, Kamala found escape in her love of video games, social media, fan fiction, and superheroes. She followed the career of Carol Danvers, Captain Marvel. 

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Undergoing Terrigenesis

One night, hoping to prove herself to be more than the odd duck, Kamala went against her parents’ and Bruno’s wishes to go to a party at the Jersey Waterfront. However, her classmates, Zoe Zimmer and her boyfriend, Josh Richardson, kept teasing her. Kamala was on her way home when Jersey City was suddenly blanketed in the Terrigen Mists, and Kamala was along with it.

Unconscious in her Terrigen cocoon, Kamala saw an unusual vision of three of her favorite superheroes Captain America, Captain Marvel, and Iron Man. The heroes asked her what she wanted in life. Kamala mused that she wanted to be more like Captain Marvel, who she described as “beautiful and awesome and butt-kicking and less complicated.” However, when the vision ended, she was shocked to find that she had literally been transformed into a younger Carol Danvers in her Ms. Marvel costume.

Kamala struggled to gain control of her new powers. After calming down, Kamala discovered she was now a polymorph and could change her body into virtually anything. She found herself back at the Waterfront as she ran through the neighborhood. She saw a drunk Josh Richardson cause Zoe Zimmer to fall into the river. Kamala changed into Ms. Marvel and rescued Zoe by enlarging her arm to pull Zoe to safety. The local media and residents of Jersey City were shocked by such a sight, and Kamala fled the scene.

Kamala realized that there was more to being like Carol Danvers than looking like her upon returning home. As horribly as Zoe had treated her, she was proud that she had rescued her. Naturally, she wanted to continue that, but it seemed unlikely to happen. She was grounded by her parents, who learned from Bruno that she fled from the party without their permission.

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Captain Marvel- Ms Marvel’s Inspiration

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Ms Marvel Joining Avengers

A watershed period in the nascent career of Ms. Marvel occurred when she received an invitation to join Earth’s Mightiest Heroes. As a result, she became an Avenger, alongside legends such as Captain America, Iron Man, and Vision. Bringing new blood to the team with fellow rookies Spiderman and Nova, plus the latest incarnation of Thor, Kamala’s enthusiasm and optimism buoys the legendary group through wars with Kang and other top-level villains.

However, Ms. Marvel’s tenure with the top team turned surprisingly short, as she, along with Spider-man and Nova, would split with the Avengers over philosophical differences. The youthful contingent felt their elder counterparts ignored small-scale situations that slipped through the cracks. Alongside the Amadues Cho AKA the Totally Awesome Hulk, an incarnation of the X-Man Cyclops, and vision’s daring daughter Viv, the trio composes the Champions and dedicates themselves to helping the helpless.

Of course, the core of Kamala’s support system comes from family and friends, starting with her proud parents, father Yusuf, and mother, Muneeba. The latter having discovered and supported her heroic exploits, both elder Khans push their daughter to embrace her roots but ultimately wish what’s best for her. Brother Aamir, a more-devoted Muslim than his sister, provides steady guidance, if not always what his sibling wants to hear. Schoolmates like Nakia, Zoe, and Josh also provide this caring crusader with a solid base and incredible allies.

But no relationship comes more complex than the “will they or won’t they” saga of Kamala and Bruno. Best buddies from a young age have had an interest in the other romantically, but obstacles in the form of their differing backgrounds, not to mention other guys and girls getting in the way, have kept them just friends.

Ms Marvel’s Adventure Continues

The world faced its last days in the wake of a cosmic incursion that threatened all reality. Kamala Khan lived out a dream and partnered with her inspiration Captain Marvel to save brother Aamir from Kamran. Once they wrapped up the rescue mission, the two Marvels bonded. Carol Danvers gifted her protege with a unique pendant featuring their insignias that doubled as a GPS tracker.

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While the universe proved resilient, Kamala’s bond with Carol sadly experienced a few bumps. When Captain Marvel entered a war of fragmented philosophies with Iron Man over her desire to utilize the untested future-predicting abilities of the Inhuman seer Ulysses, Ms. Marvel initially took the side of her namesake over her former Avengers ally. Khan took control of a cadre of teens working to capitalize on Ulysses’ visions and did some good. Still, the young Muslim found the methodology too close to racial profiling for her comfort.

Ultimately, Kamala rebelled against Captain Marvel’s other cadets. Becky St. Jude took the name Lockdown and personally targeted Ms. Marvel, freeing her friend Josh. Who had been accused of plans to blow up their school but ultimately paying the price when Bruno suffered an injury during the inciting incident. Unfortunately, this would be the catalyst to drive a wedge between not just Ms. Marvel and Carol Danvers but also Kamala Khan and Bruno Carrelli. They blamed his unrequited love for his handicap. They moved to Wakanda to participate in a particular school for the gifted.

Not long after these events, Ms. Marvel and several other heroes became separated across time, sent to a different point in the past. Kamala ended up teaming with an early incarnation of Carol Danvers, and the incident helped her shake off some of the negative feelings she had been developing toward her mentor.

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Ms Marvel’s Powers

Kamala is a human with latent Inhuman heritage whose powers were activated by the Terrigen Bomb, causing her to become a polymorph, which grants her the following abilities:

  • Morphogenetics: Kamala’s cells manifest mutable properties since she can share her mass through time with different versions of herself. On a molecular level, Ms. Marvel time-travels whenever she uses her powers. Kamala can stretch, deform, expand, or compress her entire body or parts thereof into any contiguous shape she can imagine for a variety of uses:
    • Elongation: Kamala can extend her limbs, torso, or neck to great distances.
    • Size Alteration: Kamala can adjust her height and stature, adding to her already impressive physical abilities, from shrinking to the size of an action figure to growing as tall as a building structure. She has also made her body as thin as paper with this ability.
    • Accelerated Healing Factor: Kamala can rapidly heal from injuries such as bullet wounds; however, using her other powers interrupts the healing process, requiring Kamala to maintain her normal appearance while recovering. Extensive healing also leaves Kamala heavily fatigued and hungry;. However, the more she utilizes her healing ability, the less malleable her cells become, which prevents her from using the full range of her morphogenic abilities.
    • Appearance Alteration: Kamala possesses the power to alter her physical appearance, including her hair and clothing, and could even alter her appearance enough to mimic inanimate objects. Ms. Marvel feared she had lost this ability due to her healing factor reducing the elasticity of her cells. However, this power is still present and is used on rare occasions, such as when she impersonated James Rhodes during a conversation with Tony Stark.
  • Bioluminescence: Kamala’s body uses morphogenic powers to emit a glowing yellow energy signature.

Weaknesses

  • Electromagnetic Pulses: Ms. Marvel’s body is vulnerable to EMPs, which can weaken her elasticity.
  • Overexerted Healing: Overuse of her healing factor temporarily weakens Ms. Marvel’s elasticity powers.

Equipment

  • Biokinetic Polymer Suit: Invented by Bruno as part of his scholarship application to Rutgers University, when the polymer (or “super snot”) is applied to a flexible substance, the substance becomes highly malleable. The increased elasticity allows Ms. Marvel to focus less on transforming her clothing during her metamorphoses. Unfortunately, the suit is highly susceptible to damage by exposure to water.
  • Compartment Bracelet. A series of bangles with hollow compartments inside, modified by Bruno into a single bracelet worn on her left arm to hold her cell phone.
  • They were initially used by Kamala’s great-grandmother Aisha to smuggle money out of Bombay during Partition. They had since been passed down to her daughter and granddaughter, Muneeba.
  • Locator Pendant: A gift from Captain Marvel during the incursion, this necklace allowed Kamala to signal Carol in an emergency with just the push of a button. However, it was discarded outside of the Jersey City Medical Center as a result of their falling out over the second superhero civil war. It was later rediscovered, but it is unknown if Kamala reclaimed it after repairing her friendship with Carol.

Trivia

  • Kamala is a prolific fanfiction writer under the pen name “SlothBaby,” featuring subjects ranging from the Avengers, Captain Marvel, and even the struggles of parents coping with the adventures of their super-powered babies.
    • Some of her fan fiction includes “Wolverine-and-Storm-in-space” and “Cyclops and Emma Frost’s romantic vacation in Paris.”
  • In Arabic, Kamal means “perfection.” Kamala’s parents gave her this name because they believed they could not conceive another child.
  • After briefly switching bodies with him, Peter Parker taught Kamala to use his Web-Shooters and how to web-sling.
  • Kamala has a much darker complexion than most of the Pakistani population because her family resided in Bombay before the Partition of India in 1947.
  • Spider-Man (Miles Morales) doesn’t consider Ms. Marvel an enemy; his spider-sense didn’t go off when she snuck up on him, despite it often being called a “presence sense.”

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