I’ve been inadvertently off the grid for the past week while visiting my sister in a cattle-laden corner of Ontario with little to no internet access so I’m slowly catching up on everything I missed now that I’m home, and I was very glad to return and hear about this news.
While Kelly Sue DeConnick and David Lopez are set to relaunch Captain Marvel this March, a new character is taking over Carol Danvers’ old identity of Ms. Marvel in February. Kamala Khan is an American teen girl of Pakistani origin, and when she discovers she has super powers, including the ability to change shapes, she takes the mantle of her hero Ms. Marvel.
The book is written by G. Willow Wilson, who has done some fantastic comic work including the Vertigo graphic novel Cairo and the recent CrossGen/Marvel mini-series Mystic. Her novel Alif the Unseen is also absolutely fantastic. Kamala is Muslim, and Wilson is a convert to Islam, giving her a unique perspective for writing the character. The art is by Adrian Alphona, best known for his great work on Runaways. He’s also Canadian, which makes him extra cool. The cover above is by Sara Pichelli, who I hope is the regular cover artist for the series because she’s super good.
This book sounds interesting, boasts a stellar creative team, and is a new and original direction for a superhero title. It’s also exactly what Marvel needs given some recent unfortunate trends at the company.
First, several of their female starring titles have been cancelled recently, including Red She-Hulk, the Sif-led Journey Into Mystery, and Fearless Defenders. Some upcoming books like She-Hulk and Black Widow will help fill that gap, but it’s always good to have more. I’m glad the lack of female characters was just a momentary lull before an exciting new wave.
Second, Marvel has had a serious decline in female creators as of late, particularly in terms of female writers. In the January solicits, Kelly Sue DeConnick was the only female writer with a regular gig, a position she’s held for some time after the recent cancellations of books by Kathryn Immonen and Marjorie Liu. G. Willow Wilson is extremely talented and a great addition for Marvel regardless of gender, but it’s also nice to see another female writer at Marvel after quite a while with only one.
Basically, the new Ms. Marvel is exciting on every single level! I’m certainly looking forward to checking it out, and it’ll be in comic shops everywhere on February 16, 2014.