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Things Fans Want To See In Ms. Marvel

What are fans dying to see in the upcoming "Ms. Marvel" Disney+ series? No doubt some fans can't wait to catch all the references, because there will probably be Easter eggs within Easter eggs. Others are excited about the little cultural nods that are bound to accompany the MCU's most iconic Muslim superhero. And let's not forget Kamala's slobbery sidekick. (Lockjaw, that is. What, did you think we meant Bruno?) But that's just the tip of the iceberg.

As with any comic adaptation, there are quite a few elements from the original comics that will probably end up on the cutting room floor. If you were hoping to see a bunch of mindless Kamala clones ("Ms. Marvel" Vol. 5, Issues #4-6) or Loki coming to the Valentine Dance (Vol. 3, Issue #12), you probably shouldn't get your hopes too high. But then, you never know. There's always Season 2, right? But here's what would be most gratifying.

Kamala the fangirl

As noted by The Direct, Kamala Khan (Iman Vellani) is one of the most relatable MCU characters yet, because there's one thing she has in common with everyone in the audience: she loves superheroes.

Her room is plastered with posters of Captain Marvel. In the comics, she writes fanfiction about Wolverine fighting what she describes as "a giant alien blob thing that farts wormholes" (Vol. 2, Issue #6) and also the Avengers saving Planet Unicorn. And she's not just a fan of the Avengers; she's also obsessed with Bollywood movies and "World of Battlecraft." Even when she gets to become one of the Avengers, she still can't help worshiping them (and posting fanfic about them).

Luckily, the trailer promises no shortage of fangirl moments. We see Kamala wearing an Avengers T-shirt and a Captain Marvel bike helmet. In fact, right from the first shot, viewers can see a doodle in Kamala's notebook depicting an epic battle between Ant-Man and a humanoid ant called "Man-Ant." If you love geeking about superheroes, and you love watching other characters geek out about superheroes, then you'll be in heaven watching "Ms. Marvel."

Lockjaw the teleporting dog

There are a lot of weird things that happen in the "Ms. Marvel" comic run. For instance, there's a supervillain with the head of a cockatiel (Vol 2. Issues #6-11), and a Canadian crime syndicate (Vol. 6, Issues #8-11). Most of these things are probably too bizarre to actually make it into the TV series, but there's one weird character whom fans desperately want to appear: Lockjaw.

In the comics, Lockjaw is an Inhuman dog the size of a polar bear with a little forked antenna sprouting from his forehead. Also, he can teleport. The first time Kamala sees him, she asks her parents if she can keep him (Vol. 2, Issue #8). It's possible Lockjaw will appear in the show, though we're not sure how much this character will resemble the source material. Reconciling a gigantic horned dog with the rest of the MCU might require a bit of suspension of disbelief, especially since Lockjaw also appeared in the notorious "Inhumans" TV show, and we doubt Marvel wants to remind anybody of that series.

But rest assured, there's still hope for Lockjaw fans. CBR reported an episode title leak for the show, and if the leak is indeed accurate, Episode 2 will be called "Lockin' Jaws." Most likely, Lockjaw will just be a normal dog (not unlike Lucky the Pizza Dog from "Hawkeye") or else a regular-sized dog who has teleportation powers.

Kamran as a love interest (and probably villain)

Rish Shah will be playing Kamran in the series, though it's too soon to say if his character will show any significant changes from the source material. In the comics, Kamran is a love interest for Kamala and later a villain ("Ms. Marvel" Vol. 3 Issues #13-18). Kamran acts like a well-mannered Pakistani boy when Kamala's parents are around, but he shows a much wilder side around Kamala, giving her rides to school and encouraging her to sneak out. If that sets off any alarm bells, it should; Kamran is involved in a plot with the supervillain Lineage.

He probably won't be exactly like comics, though. For one, the original Kamran is an Inhuman, something the MCU has avoided since the "Inhumans" show bombed. Kamran acts entitled because of his Inhuman status, not to mention he's a bit of a creep, which led The Guardian to observe that his character may break some stereotypes but perpetuate others. The trailer seems to suggest that Kamran will be first introduced as a cool Pakistani-American guy at school, rather than an old family friend whom Kamala's parents trust.

The most socially-conscious storylines from the comics

"Ms. Marvel" is a timely and relevant comic, a socially-conscious series that explores some thought-provoking themes. They depict problems that teens from Kamala's generation can relate to (like when Kamala faces off against an Internet troll who takes the guise of a literal troll in Vol. 7, Issues #14-17) and issues that her generation cares about (like when she launches a "get out the vote" campaign to stop an agent of HYDRA from becoming mayor in Vol. 7, Issue #13). Some storylines touch on gentrification in Kamala's hometown and explore the cost that comes with fame (Vol. 5, Issues #1-3). Others involve Gen Z teens brainwashed into becoming human fuel cells (Vol. 2, Issues #6-11). There's even a "Civil War II" arc (Vol. 6, Issues #8-11) where Kamala and the other Avengers dispute the ethics of "predictive justice."

We hope that some of the storylines from the comics will make it into the show. It would be cool to see Becky St. Jude, Doc.X, or another villain from Ms. Marvel's rogue gallery. However, Marvel has already announced most of the show's cast, and only Kamran is slated to appear. Still, even if the show doesn't use any of these exact storylines, it might still create new material that captures the same politically-savvy vibe as the comics.

A visual style that resembles a comic book

"Ms. Marvel" looks like it's going to be a show that openly embraces its comic book origins. Like most Marvel properties, the trailer begins with the iconic Marvel opening theme, but this time, the entire opening theme is inside a giant thought bubble, as if Kamala is daydreaming about Marvel. (Don't we all?) From that moment forward, we see the world through Kamala's eyes: We see hearts floating above her head when she gazes at her crush, and glowing devil horns on the girl who is bullying her.

This stylized comic-book look is certainly a welcome change for Marvel Studios. The only question is how far they are willing to take it –- too much and the stylistic flairs will be distracting, too little and Marvel will miss an awesome opportunity. 

It's possible that once the story gets rolling, the show will all but forget about the little comic-book touches, which might disappoint fans who loved the playful style of the original comics. Nevertheless, we think the expressive visual style will be a treat.

Kamala and Bruno's chemistry

Kamala and her friend Bruno (played by Matt Linz on the Disney+ series) have some awesome chemistry in the comics. They both tease each other, but they've still got each other's backs. Usually, Bruno is the sensible one who reigns in some of Ms. Marvel's wilder ideas. (Not counting the time he thinks it's a good idea to create a living T-Rex using his 3-D printer.) Also, Bruno is crushing on Kamala big-time, which is kind of an issue — even though Kamala's parents trust Bruno and consider him an old family friend, they would never dream of letting their daughter marry a Westerner (Vol. 3, Issue #14).

What makes these comics especially impressive is that they "avoid taking the easy way out" with Kamala and Bruno, notes Retcon Punch. "Ms. Marvel" doesn't pair up Kamala and Bruno and let them live happily ever after. Instead, the comic develops their relationship as friends, while always leaving the possibility of romance hanging. When Bruno confesses his love for her in Vol. 4, Issue #19, Kamala says she loves him too, but she can't possibly handle juggling a relationship alongside her hero work. Each of them ends up dating somebody else later in the comics, and some fans speculate they will never be a couple. If the Disney+ series wants to preserve the spirit of the comics, then hopefully it will capture the complexity of their dynamic.

The introduction of Red Dagger

Ms. Marvel will be sharing the stage with another Muslim superhero, Kareem (Aramis Knight) — who moonlights as Red Dagger. If their relationship is anything like the comics, she will probably have a crush on him — even as she's annoyed that he's stealing her thunder. 

Kamala first meets Red Dagger in Vol. 6, Issue #12, whenever she's visiting some family in Pakistan. Ms. Marvel is going after some bandits, and she is surprised to find that she's not the only Pakistani superhero. After Kamala makes a mess of things, Red Dagger tells her, "Next time -– check in with the local superhero before you destroy a truck." Later, Kareem shows up at Kamala's school as an exchange student (Vol. 8, Issues #23-24).

When the two heroes catch wind of a runaway train, they both get the same idea –- and they both excuse themselves from class at the same time. They stop the train, of course, but Kamala realizes Red Dagger is so good at his job that he makes her almost obsolete. 

In the Disney+ series, maybe meeting Red Dagger will inspire Kamala, since for the first time she'll see a superhero that looks like her. Or maybe it will convince her to quit before she's even begun, because she feels like there's no way she can measure up to him.

The inclusion of Pakistani culture

Ms. Marvel is a Muslim superhero (the first to get her own dedicated series, says VOA), and Pakistani culture is threaded throughout her story. Characters from the comics speak Urdu, go to mosque, and host a traditional Pakistani wedding. As well, Kamala's father (Mohan Kapur) explains the Arabic origins of his daughter's name (Vol. 1, Issue #5).

Writer G. Willow Wilson does a wonderful job depicting a wide array of three-dimensional Muslim characters. For instance, Kamala's friend Nakia (Yasmeen Fletcher) insists on wearing a headscarf, even though her parents tell her it's just a "phase" (Vol. 1, Issue #1). Later, when Kamala admits in mosque that she kissed a boy, Sheikh Abdullah (Laith Nakli) tells her it's "the end of the entire world," before laughing and saying he's just kidding (Vol. 9, Issue #29).

The comics even show the backstory of Kamala's great-grandmother, who fled from India to the newly-formed nation of Pakistan during the 1947 Partition (Vol. 6, Issue #8-9). It's possible this backstory will come up during the TV series. The trailer shows a clip of what appears to be a stream of people traveling by torchlight, and we're pretty sure they're not in New Jersey.

Gal pals Nakia and Zoe

Many fans are eager to see the unlikely friendship of Nakia and Zoe brought to the screen. Nakia is Kamala's childhood friend and a pious Muslim. Meanwhile, Zoe (Laurel Marsden) is a popular white girl at school who, in Nakia's words, is "only nice to be mean" (Vol. 1, Issue #1).

But there's more to each of them than meets the eye. Nakia can be quite sarcastic at times, and she is constantly listening to what Kamala calls "the Muslim gossip wire service" (Vol. 4, Issue #19). She's so perceptive that it comes as no surprise that Nakia knew her friend was a superhero all along (Vol. 10, #31). While it's true that Zoe bullies Kamala at first, she later apologizes in Vol. 4, Issue #19 and admits she only did it out of jealousy. Plus, Zoe is queer and has a major crush on Nakia. In the comics, Nakia must admit to Zoe that she doesn't return those feelings, in a sweet moment that brings the two girls even closer as friends (Vol. 7, Issue #16).

Hopefully, we'll get to see some of their dynamic in the show.

A scene-stealing performance from Aamir

We're looking forward to seeing Aamir (Saagar Shaikh), Kamala's big brother who prays daily but won't get a job. According to IMDB, it looks like Aamir will only appear for one episode. So alas, we probably won't get to see any of Aamir's most interesting moments from the comics (like when Aamir is annoyed to learn he has superpowers in Vol. 4, Issue #18). Still, hopefully Aamir will make a lasting impression when he does appear.

It's possible that we might see Nakia (who seems to appear in all 6 episodes) fill a similar role that Aamir did in the comics: the heroine's uptight companion who scolds her a lot but will stand by Kamala's side when she needs them most.

However, it does seem like one aspect of Aamir's character will make it into the show: his relationship with Tyesha. IGN confirmed that Travina Springer plays Aamir's wife. It's unclear if she will already be married to Aamir when the series begins or if they will marry sometime during the series. We hope it's the latter. The series may not have enough time to explore these two characters in-depth – we're going to miss Aamir and Tyesha dating in secret and gushing about "Dune" (Vol. 5, Issue #2) — but their wedding could make for an interesting plot point. Especially if Kamala gets involved in a superfight while her whole family is watching. (Could this be what's happening in the brief clip from the trailer where Kamala uses her super-fist?)

Easter eggs from the original comics

The "Ms. Marvel" comics are a treasure trove of Easter eggs. For instance, a certain panel in "Ms. Marvel" Vol. 4, Issue #16 includes an amusing detail in the background: a man in the street wearing a sign that says "I told you the end was nigh!!" Later, after the crisis is over, Vol. 5, Issue #2 shows graffiti on a brick wall that reads, "The end was nay." This is exactly the kind of visual gag that the original comics excelled at, and with any luck we will see this gag (and more like it) in the TV series.

In fact, there's one Easter egg we already know will appear in the show, thanks to a small detail you might have missed from the trailer. If you look closely at the doodles in Kamala's notebook, you'll notice that there are a bunch of flying sloths in astronaut helmets. In the comics, Kamala has a thing for flying sloths. There's a plush sloth with wings in her bedroom, and in the trippy vision that Kamala experiences when she first gets her powers, Iron Man can be seen stroking a winged sloth (Vol. 1, Issue #1).

G. Willow Wilson (the writer for the original "Ms. Marvel" comics) announced on Twitter that she has "seen footage of the Ms Marvel sets," and she assured fans that the sets were loaded with Easter eggs.

Kamala learning to be herself instead of Captain Marvel

While it's understandable why Marvel changed Kamala's powers for the TV series, this alteration may potentially affect an important part of the story. In the comics, Kamala's polymorph abilities (growing, stretching, shapeshifting) reflect her character arc, in which she realizes she should be herself instead of trying to be like Captain Marvel. When Ms. Marvel first uses her powers (Vol. 1, Issue #1), she shapeshifts into Carol Danvers, because Kamala assumes that's the way a superhero is supposed to look. In her eyes, a Pakistani-American teenager can't be a hero, though she soon learns to embrace her Pakistani-American identity. But if Marvel is scrapping Kamala's polymorph abilities, CBR notes that "the larger message of what it means to be comfortable in her own skin is lost."

However, fans shouldn't lose heart just yet. Even if Kamala won't be using her shapeshifting powers to look like Captain Marvel, she will definitely be wearing a costume designed to look like Carol Danvers, complete with a plastic blonde mohawk. No doubt this will take on a symbolic significance whenever Kamala trades her Captain Marvel cosplay outfit for her own personal super suit, just like in the comics. Plus, judging by the trailer, the series obviously intends to prove that "brown girls from Jersey City" can save the world, too.

Kamala taking a selfie with a major superhero

The cover of "Ms. Marvel" Vol. 2, Issue #7 shows Kamala Khan taking a selfie with a scowling Wolverine. While Kamala and Wolverine face off against sewer alligators (don't ask), she can't help but geek out, telling Wolverine, "I put you first in my fantasy team-up bracket!" (Vol. 2, Issue #6). Canonically, we never see Ms. Marvel officially take the selfie shown on the issue's cover, but she does mention that she "Pictagrammed this whole sad episode" (Vol. 2, Issue #7) despite Wolverine's insistence to keep their encounter under wraps. Canon or not, the selfie is something we bet fans want to see play out for real in the MCU.

It likely won't be with Wolverine, however. As of spring 2022, the X-Men haven't been introduced in the MCU yet. Hopefully, though, fans will get an equivalent moment with another MCU character who might cross paths with Kamala. We can totally picture Bucky Barnes (Sebastian Stan) or Wong (Benedict Wong) being unamused by Ms. Marvel's fangirling. Though, Wong might eventually cave and smile for Kamala's photo — after all, he's got a soft spot for karaoke and Beyoncé. Perhaps the most likely candidate is Captain Marvel, whom Kamala might meet before the end of the series, as a setup for "The Marvels."