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11 Facts About Marvel's Moon Girl That Will Unlock Your Inner Genius

Moon Girl may be one of Marvel's youngest and freshest superheroes, but she has certainly made her mark in the industry. First appearing in 2015, Lunella Lafayette has collided with the Marvel Universe, headlining her own title and taking part in some of the company's biggest events. At just nine years old, the young girl is widely recognized as one of the planet's foremost intellectual minds. Meanwhile, her attachment to a red ferocious tyrannosaurus rex makes her a formidable opponent on the battlefield.

This budding comic star may lack decades of content like many of her Marvel roster buddies, yet she has developed a following of dedicated fans. Her growing popularity has propelled her into mainstream comic storylines, landed her in Marvel video games, and made her the star of an animated series. However, with Moon Girl still being a relative newcomer to the wide world of fiction, many fans have yet to receive a formal introduction to this preteen genius. Keep reading to become a genius on Marvel's newest brainchild.

Moon Girl and Devil Dinosaur is a sequel

Moon Girl is an outlier in an industry that has been dominated by the same collection of characters for decades. In comic books, it has become a rarity that any newly-created characters have gained traction with fans. Most of the world's favorite superheroes have been around since before the bulk of their fanbase was even born. And even then, the majority of the most popular rookie heroes are carbon copies of more established characters, such as the Miles Morales version of Spider-Man. Moon Girl gained her leg up in the competitive industry thanks to a long-forgotten series, Jack Kirby's "Devil Dinosaur," featuring his best buddy, Moon-Boy.

Lunella Lafayette owes her establishment to her primal co-star, who has been around since the late 1970s. Devil Dinosaur was a favorite character of Marvel editor Mark Paniccia, who had long wanted to bring the Jurassic character out of Dinosaur World and into the modern world of the Marvel Comics universe, Earth-616. He pitched his idea to writers Brandon Montclare and Amy Reeder, and the pair quickly ran with his vision of making a follow-up to Devil Dinosaur's lore. "There's been a lot of cool, small Devil Dinosaur stories since the Jack Kirby series ended," said Montclare in an interview with Gizmodo. "But in a lot of ways, this is a direct sequel to the Kirby stuff, because we're pulling him from time, right from Kirby's world into our world. And that does involve Moon-Boy, and some of the other Kirby original characters, including the Killer-Folk."

The character is inspired by Studio Ghibli

The first thing you'll notice about Moon Girl is that she's nothing like your typical comic book superhero. For the creators, getting the chance to work with an "obscure" character is what attracted them to the project. "It's just very cool to be able to do something inside the Marvel universe, inside the world of superheroes — but at the same time it's a completely different thing," co-creator Brandon Montclare stated to Gizmodo. "We had a young kid without superpowers, and we had, obviously, a giant dinosaur. Which, again, lets you do something very different than when you're working with the regular cape-and-tights superhero."

Moon Girl's introduction to a comic industry ripe with white middle-aged men means there is more versatility in Marvel. This was also a big draw to the creators of the character, especially the original artist. "I think it's so important to find relatable characters like Lunella in comics," Natacha Bustos in a Comics Beat interview. "It's something I missed a lot when I was a child. It was hard to find and read works where females weren't objects because it happened so frequently in superhero comics."

The artist responsible for bringing Moon Girl to life had a particular vision for her creation, one that will no doubt make anime fans keen to pick up the comic and watch the series. According to Bustos, there's a Studio Ghibli vibe to Moon Girl. "I see Lunella's story as a Ghibli one because of the deep feelings and relationships it has," she explained. "It's not without action — there is a lot of action in it and it's a lot of fun — but the most important aspect is watching how Lunella grows up."

She can switch bodies with her dinosaur friend

It's impossible to get into the story and background of Moon Girl without discussing her gigantic best friend, Devil Dinosaur. The t-rex comes from a primitive version of reality dubbed Earth-78411. However, even in this land ruled by extinct monsters, Devil is unique from other dinosaurs. The monster's red skin is considered a mutation, making him more powerful and intelligent than the rest of his species. Equally, Devil shares an emotional bond with a member of the Small-Folk tribe who saved his life, Moon-Boy. Together, the duo shared many adventures in Dinosaur World, including putting a stop to a potential alien invasion and having a run-in with Godzilla. Unfortunately, Devil lost his closest ally when Moon-Boy was brutally beaten by their primary villains, the Killer-Folk.

Rampaging his way to revenge, Devil Dinosaur followed his enemies through a portal opened by a young girl from a different dimension in "Moon Girl and Devil Dinosaur" #1. Cooperating with the human female in hopes of avenging his lost pal, Devil built a new kinship with Lunella Lafayette that would prove to be more than fate. Lunella had the Inhuman gene inside her DNA, which meant that she would inevitably succumb to a mutation from the Terrigen mist. To their surprise, this impacted both of them, with the duo gaining the ability to switch bodies.

She is the smartest person in the world

Comic book enthusiasts love to debate about who is the best, who is the strongest, and who is the most intelligent hero. Many Marvel characters have fought for the title of brightest genius in the galaxy, including Tony Stark, Bruce Banner, and Reed Richards. However, the debate was put to rest when nine year old Lunella Lafayette entered the picture. Audiences quickly gained respect for Lunella thanks to her impressive inventions and the fact that she built an entire secret laboratory under her school. However, in "Moon Girl and Devil Dinosaur" #12, Lunella proved that she's head and shoulders above Marvel's most substantial geniuses.

The Banner BOX (Brain Omnicompetence Examiner) is a device created by Bruce Banner to test intellectual aptitude. Resembling a video game controller, it's a puzzle that was designed to be unsolvable. Lunella cracked it on her first attempt, completing it in seconds. Conquering the BOX with such ease made it clear that she was the smartest person in the world. The fourth grader's position as the "smartest there is" was verified by Rockefeller University in "Moon Girl and Devil Dinosaur" #13. She's officially the cleverest Marvel hero, which is quite the feat given that she's not even a teenager yet.

She has invented some incredible gadgets

Lunella has used her supreme intelligence to craft an assortment of strange and wonderful gadgets over the years. Upon accepting herself as a superhero in "Moon Girl and Devil Dinosaur" #5, the adolescent vigilante designed a new battle suit. Complete with suspenders and goggles, Moon Girl's outfit is covered in unique technology. Spring-loaded roller skates and a helicopter backpack help her get around, while her projectile boxing glove means she can pack a punch. She has a sneeze powder gun, and she even created a remote-controlled robotic dinosaur to assist her in the direst of situations.

In "Moon Girl and Devil Dinosaur" #19, the grade school hero single-handedly built a spaceship called the Moon Mobile and launched herself into space. After a chance encounter with the X-Men, Lunella was able to hack their Cerebro computer to help track down her enemies. Later, during the "Monsters Unleashed" event, she was the one who created a translation helmet for the heroes to understand what alien invaders were saying. Some of her most complicated inventions may require a real-world genius to understand, like her 4D glasses or her quasi-quantum energy probe.

She is legally blind

Daredevil is undoubtedly the most famous visually-impaired superhero, but he's not the only character on Marvel's roster who is legally blind — Moon Girl is so near-sighted that she falls under this category. Lunella is never depicted without her corrective spectacles, though fans weren't quite sure how they worked and if she actually needed them to see in the early days. Her disability was clarified in "Moon Girl and Devil Dinosaur" #25, in which the titular character teams up with The Thing and The Human Torch from the Fantastic Four.

In the panels, Silver Surfer comes to Earth in search of the smartest person in the world. Feeling overprotective, the rock-skinned Ben Grimm takes a major swing at the Surfer, clocking him in the head. Lunella hilariously exclaims: "You came light-years looking for me and you didn't see that coming? I'm legally blind and saw it from a mile away!" Of course, the cosmic-powered Silver Surfer was just fine, but Moon Girl may have revealed her biggest weakness with her joke. However, she is certainly clever enough to carry an extra pair of goggles with her in case of an emergency.

Kid Kree fell in love with her

The fact that Lunella is a near-sighted nine-year-old girl means that she's ranked as the least dangerous Inhuman on Kree records. In "Moon Girl and Devil Dinosaur" #7, the young Kree Mel-Varr decides to capture an Inhuman in order to prove himself to his race, but his files fail to take into account that Moon Girl is the most intelligent hero on Earth. Mel-Varr (aka Kid Kree) infiltrates Lunella's school under the alias Marvin Ellis and attempts to get close to her, and he succeeds. However, he ends up getting a little too close to her.

During his reconnaissance mission, Kid Kree falls hard for Moon Girl. When his father and a bunch of Kree warriors arrive on Earth, believing that Mel-Varr has been kidnapped by Inhumans and his being held hostage, the young alien has a choice to make. Kid Kree ends up taking Lunella's side during the ensuing battle, saving the girl he loves. He ends up going home after the mess is all cleared up, but later teams up with Moon Girl when she puts a team together to help her fight some Doombots.

Doctor Doom is her archnemesis

Although Moon Girl and Devil Dinosaur have several enemies across the galaxy, there is one villain who despises Lunella above all others, and if you're a Marvel fan, you'll have no doubt heard his name before: Doctor Victor von Doom. The long-standing arch nemesis of the Fantastic Four's Reed Richards, Doom has spent most of his supervillain career attempting to prove that he's smarter than Mister Fantastic. When news that Lunella had been dubbed the world's smartest person reached the egotistical Doctor Doom, he set his sights on her, becoming the young character's chief antagonist. He was quick to try and prove himself superior by attacking her just two comic issues after she had been established as the new top genius on Earth.

With the help of Iron Heart, Doctor Strange, and the X-Men, Moon Girl managed to fend off Doctor Doom for a while. She even hacked one of his Doombots, displaying its head in her lab and using it as an assistant. But when one of the universe's most nefarious bad guys has a vendetta against you, you can be certain that he will not give up easily. In "Moon Girl and Devil Dinosaur" #18, Doctor Doom sends an entire army to capture the grade school child. Thankfully, every superhero friend that Moon Girl has made comes to assist her in the battle.

She got rejected from Mister Fantastic's elite school

There is a place in the Marvel Universe specifically designed for prodigies of Lunella Lafayette's caliber. The Future Foundation is a school created and operated by comic book's premiere scientist, Reed Richards of the Fantastic Four. Back in 2010's "Fantastic Four" #579, Richards started the Future Foundation to create a better future for all of humanity. The school welcomed several of the universe's brightest children, including his highly intelligent daughter Valeria Richards. Teachers at the illustrious school have included Spider-Man, Ant-Man, and Mister Fantastic himself.

There's no doubting his brains, but Richards may want to have another look at the Future Foundation's admittance policy. Before Lunella was mutated by the Inhuman gene, became best friends with a dinosaur, and was discovered to be the "smartest there is," the child prodigy applied to join the Future Foundation on several occasions. The first panels of "Moon Girl and Devil Dinosaur" #1 contain a corkboard with a collection of rejection letters from the school. Eagle-eyed readers will have noticed that she scored in the top 3% of the population, yet she was still denied entry to the Future Foundation for various reasons.

She was one half of Moon Squirrel

Things got pretty crazy for the Marvel Universe during the 2018 mega-crossover event "Infinity Wars." During the commotion, Gamora used the Infinity Stones to fold the universe in half and compact it into the Soul Gem. This caused every person to blend and merge with another. The event introduced many interesting crossover characters in the Warp World, including Arachknight (a cross between Spider-Man and Moon Knight), Iron Hammer (Iron Man meets Thor), and Doopool (a bizarre mash-up of Doop and Deadpool). One of the most interesting characters was an amalgamation of Moon Girl and another fan-favorite superheroine: Doreen Green, aka Squirrel Girl.

Luneen Lafagreen is the world's smartest kid and best friends with a dinosaur-sized squirrel named Tippysaur. Together with her oversized pet, Luneen fights crime as the superhero known as Moon Squirrel. She becomes one of Warp World's premiere super figures after she saves the planet from the terrible Doctor Doomactus (a Doctor Doom and Galactus mix) by convincing him that everyone in the universe already loves him. Although Moon Squirrel was a short-lived venture from Marvel Comics, she was a fun blend between two of the company's most interesting female heroes.

Some readers think she's too bratty

Moon Girl rode into the world of Marvel Comics on the back of a giant dinosaur that already had a cult following. "Devil Dinosaur" might not have been the most popular title, but the character (and his pal Moon-Boy) had a place in the hearts of some comic enthusiasts. Lunella Lafayette was introduced with her own comic book title, a feat that many long-standing characters from the Marvel roster have yet to accomplish. While the "Moon Girl and Devil Dinosaur" series was a relaunch of a former title, many of the publisher's most loyal readers take exception to her quick establishment as such an important figure canonically in the franchise.

It makes for hilarious comedy that a grade school kid is the smartest person on a planet that is very scientifically advanced. However, some fans believe that the "best genius" title should still belong to iconic heroes like Tony Stark, Reed Richards, and Bruce Banner. Audiences weren't given the opportunity to decide if they even liked the character of Moon Girl before she became one of the most valuable big-brains in the universe. It's not just that she's a child who usurped some iconic characters, either — some readers find Lunella to be unlikeable because of her personality. "She is super condescending to EVERYONE, and just flat out rude," Redditor u/isnee81 said. "I get that she's a kid, and an intelligent one at that, so she's being portrayed as a brat, but I just don't like her. And that's a problem. I should WANT to like her."