Kamala Khan, Marvel’s first Muslim superhero, is one of the comic book publishers’ greatest modern successes. Along with Miles Morales, Amadeus Cho, RiRi Williams, and a host of other young new heroes she would eventually lead, Kamala greatly helped diversify Marvel’s roster of superheroes and opened up new avenues for storytelling and representation.
Created by Marvel editor Sana Amanat, writer G. Willow Wilson, and artists Adrian Alphona and Jamie McKelvie, Kamala Khan is a teenage Pakistani American from Jersey City, New Jersey, Obsessed with her favorite hero, Captain Marvel, she idolizes, cosplays, and even writes fan-fiction about the cosmic warrior.
With the Disney+ series already off to a great start, fans can find all of Kamala Khan’s greatest stories in the comics below to learn everything there is to know about the MCU’s latest teen hero.
1. Ms. Marvel: Kamala Khan
Written by G. Willow Wilson, Kamala Khan goes from a “normal” Pakistani teen fighting with her parents in Jersey City to a super-powered being after coming in contact with the Terrigen mist, a vaporous substance that activates an Inhuman’s dormant abilities once they come of age.
That’s right: in the comics, Kamala is an Inhuman, another advancement of humanity much like the Eternals or the X-Men Mutants that grant people special abilities. This backstory was all changed in the Disney+ series (largely due to the commercial failure of the MCU’s Inhumans ABC series from 2017), as well as to give her more of a connection to Captain Marvel.
Within the pages of Marvel comics, Kamala’s body can grow and extend at will, much like Reed Richards of the Fantastic Four, but in the Disney+ series, it appears that her powers will be granted to her through the use of some mysterious cosmic bracelet. We may lose what feels like an integral part of Kamala’s original design–that she’s a teenage hero and her body is changing out of control–but higher up’s at Disney presumably wanted to keep her as separate as they could since they plan to launch a Fantastic Four film reboot sometime in the next couple of years.
After getting introduced to Kamala’s powers, her family and friends, and her first small-time foe, Kamala’s antics reach the attention of heroes such as Captain America, the Inhumans, and Wolverine, who send the lovable, teleporting dog Lockjaw to watch over her and keep her safe.
Continuing her investigation of teens going missing from her school, she faces off against the Inventor–a maniacal weirdo and a half-bird, half-human character not likely to be seen outside of a cheeky reference in the Disney+ series.
- Ms. Marvel: Kamala Khan by G. Willow Wilson collects Ms. Marvel #1-11
2. Ms. Marvel: Metamorphosis
Kamala Khan enters a love triangle in volume two of her early adventures, when her childhood best friend, Bruno, and a newly resurfaced family friend, Kamran, compete for her affection. Bruno has always been there for her over the years, but Kamran–a fellow Pakistani resident of Jersey City–reveals to Kamala that he also possesses Inhuman abilities.
If that wasn’t enough, Marvel’s grand imbalance in the multiverse threatens the end of the world and brings Kamala face-to-face with her idol: Carol Danvers.
- Ms. Marvel: Metamorphosis by G. Willow Wilson collects Ms. Marvel #12-19
3. Ms. Marvel: Super Famous
Kamala picked up in mid-2015 with a sequel series immediately following the multiverse mayhem that was teased in the final pages of Ms. Marvel #19 and blasted all of Marvel comics into an incredibly dense event called Secret Wars. Secret Wars is nearly-impossible to read for anyone who had not been following every storyline leading up to the crossover, but for Kamala Khan (and other superhero variants like Miles Morales’ Spider-Man and Jane Foster’s Thor), it offered Marvel a way to combine all of their titles into one shared universe.
The situation was ideal for Kamala, who opens up this next chapter of her story as a team member of the reformed Avengers. She may have accomplished her dream of fighting alongside her idols, but she still has problems back home. Not only did her best friend Bruno reveal that he has feelings for her in Ms. Marvel #19, but she is starting to feel the burnout of being a part-time Avenger and a part-time high school student.
- Ms. Marvel: Super Famous by G. Willow Wilson collects Ms. Marvel Vol. 4 #1-6
4. Civil War II
Marvel had another massive event in 2016 with the second Civil War, this time pitting Iron Man against Captain Marvel. Instead of registering their secret identities with the government like in the first cross-over event, Civil War II focused on the discovery of a new Inhuman named Ulysses who started having visions of crimes before they were committed.
Playing out like the film Minority Report, Captain Marvel decides that it’s important to use Ulysses’ visions to apprehend potential criminals before they can do harm, while those who side with Iron Man believe that you are innocent until proven guilty.
Roped into the conflict along with her other fellow young Avengers, Kamala joins Captain Marvel’s new crime-prevention program until her experiences in the field start to have her question her idol and mentor. As they say: never meet your heroes.
- Kamala Khan’s story continues in Civil War II by Brian Michael Bendis and Ms. Marvel: Civil War II #7-13 by G. Willow Wilson
5. Ms. Marvel: Mecca
Following the events of Civil War II, Ms. Marvel travels to Karachi in Pakistan to learn more about her heritage and find herself again after feuding with her childhood idol, Captain Marvel. There she meets Kareem, a.k.a. the Red Dagger, a Pakistani superhero and potential romantic distraction from her family, the Avengers, and Bruno–her best friend who took an internship in Wakanda after he told Kamala about his feelings for her and felt unrequited.
Meanwhile, the new Mayor of Jersey City is a Hydra supporter, and he’s rounding up members of Kamala’s community to question their immigration status. If that wasn’t enough, her old predictive justice team from Civil War II is still loose in the city and carrying on with their questionable methods of crime-fighting.
- Ms. Marvel: Mecca by G. Willow Wilson collects Ms. Marvel Vol. 4 #18-24
6. Ms. Marvel: Outlawed
Taking over writing duties from G. Willow Wilson, Saladin Ahmed expanded Kamala Khan’s world with a new super suit, an Arab hero-friend named Amulet, and Bruno and Kamala’s first kiss in Magnificent Ms. Marvel.
Kamala also spends this time leading the Champions, a team of young heroes consisting of Miles Morales, RiRi Williams, Nova, Amadeus Cho, Patriot, and Vision’s daughter Viv. After the government passes a law momentarily outlawing teenage superheroes, the group speaks out and goes into hiding until they get the proposed bill, named “Kamala’s Law,” repealed.
- Kamala Khan’s most recent adventures are collected in Magnificent Ms. Marvel by Saladin Ahmed, Ms. Marvel: Outlawed by Saladin Ahmed, and Champions: Outlawed by Eve Ewing
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