This is it, the final installment of this book’s first five-part story arc, and it does not disappoint. After some mild throwdowns in the last issue [a review I missed due to being abroad, and that I will get to] this cover opens up to unabashed in-your-face superheroics, and doesn’t stop there.
We begin smack dab in the middle of a botched rescue attempt, and while the events do finally lead to her donning her costume it’s her confidence that’s the true focus. Issue #4 had her finally adopting the moniker of Ms. Marvel, and while smashing robots is a pretty great ego boost being shot a second time appears to drain that tout suite. Her decision to run away begins with the realization that she is “losing this fight,” and culminates in words we can all relate to:
“I can feel the failure coming on– that awful syrupy sweet feeling you get in your stomach when you’ve really screwed up.”
It’s an experience every teenager has gone through time and time again, and while previous episodes have focused on what it’s like to be a Pakistani Muslim kid we now have one that’s about being a kid, period. This takes the form of her being caught sneaking out yet again, her mother yelling and on the verge of tears, and a heart-to-heart talk with her father. It’s a roller coaster of emotions and it results, as is sometimes the case, in a steely determination.
Kamala realizes the responsibility she has to her parents, but also to her friends and those that need protecting. She realizes the Ben Parker adage but throws some specificity in there for good measure-
The panels above are part of a training montage of sorts [enter your motivational song of choice here] and, like I said, she gets to throwing on her outfit and kicking some butt. Kamala saves both Vick and the day. Of course, vigilante antics are never that simple.
This arc comes to a close with a Ms. Marvel effigy hung outside the Circle Q, alongside a threat, “THE BIRDMAN COMETH.” It’s a message that has nothing to do with Tony Hawk and everything to do with the Inventor, whose ghastly visage is revealed on the final page. Kamala Khan has a name, a costume, a city to protect, and her own supervillain. All of the groundwork has been set, now it’s time for this title to really get started.
Before we finish with the usual sight gag feature I do want to mention that the next two issues, #6 and #7, will have the immensely talented Jake Wyatt on art duties. That’s a preview page on the left [click to enlarge], and I’m looking forward to them more than you know. They also feature Wolverine, which makes perfect sense if you know anything about the character’s past.
Never fear, Alphona fans, the regular artist will be returning with Issue #8. Also look forward to an alien teleporting royal dog.
The Ms. Marvel Visual Gag You Shouldn’t Have Missed: We’ve got a real breakfast of champions here, with the return of GM-O’s and their hilarious Q&A [Q: (Billy) Can we- / A: No.], Cromulant Crunch!!! and their life-lesson-teaching maze, and Adequate Apple-flavoured Low Hanging Fruit Juice.
Ms. Marvel #5
Written by G. Willow Wilson
Art by Adrian Alphona
Colours by Ian Herring
Letters by Joe Caramagna
Edited by Sana Amanat