I think Ms. Marvel might be my favorite ongoing comic. Wait, no, shit. I forgot about Saga for a second. Okay, so Ms. Marvel is probably my SECOND favorite comic, definitely my favorite superhero comic. I love Carol Danvers probably as much as I love Kamala Khan, but the last couple of Captain Marvel trades have fallen a little flat for me, and meanwhile G. Willow Wilson continues to absolutely KILL IT with Kamala.
Volume 1 was Kamala’s origin story, Volume 2 was her getting comfortable with her powers and getting her first nemesis. This one is about being a teenage girl and also being a teenage girl with superpowers. Teenage girls get crushes. Fierce crushes. So what happens when you mix those crushes with the superhero world?
We get a little bit of a Loki cameo in the first issue, and it was silly fun. The last issue in here is actually an Agents of SHIELD crossover (which I didn’t even know they were doing . . . like, FitzSimmons shows up). That last issue was a weakness in an otherwise strong collection, probably because it wasn’t written by Wilson.
The main show here is that an old family friend comes in to town, and Kamala isn’t too happy about it, until she realizes the kid who used to eat his own boogers has turned in to this:
They both like each other pretty hardcore right away, and it turns out they have something else incommon. They’re both Inhumans. It seems like it’s too good to be true . . . and it is. Kamala continues to be adorably awkward:
But the guy is a douchebag who tries to bring Kamala into his Inhuman revolution or whatever, and when she refuses, he tries to make her do it by force. It all turns into an extended rape metaphor, and a good example of the kinds of conversations we should have about consent. The metaphor was a BIT heavy-handed, which is the second reason I didn’t give this five stars, but was probably appropriate for its target audience (young people).
My last complaint is that I MISS ADRIAN ALPHONA. Takeshi Miyazawa does a pretty good job capturing Kamala’s awkwardness, but he also makes her . . . too pretty. Elmo Bondoc has the Loki issue, and while he does good work with the world and other characters (see below), his Kamala is weak.
Anyway, whatever. Can’t wait for Volume 4.