Ms. Marvel #12

by F.D. White on February 19, 2015

It's been a year now since Marvel released the first issue of the acclaimed Ms. Marvel run, and I think it's safe to say that these past 12 issues have sufficiently shut up Kamala Khan's detractors. Month after month, G. Willow Wilson and Adrian Alphona had treated us to one of the most refreshing comic book heroes in a while. Kamala's story was one that many were partially familiar with, but with enough cultural differences thrown in to make the experience feel like an entirely new one. Most importantly, these cultural differences while different did anything, but make Kamala feel foreign or strange. If anything, Ms. Marvel has shown us that even with those differences, Kamala Khan and her family are more like the average reader than they would assume. Now with this 12th issue behind it's back, it's easy to say that Ms. Marvel has been a bonafide success.

This special little one-shot, allows the reader to breathe a little after the epic and sprawling 11 part arc that started Kamala's story. Contrasted with that, issue 12 is a simple story that still manages to keep the scope of Kamala's life straddled between the intimate and potentially Avengers level bombastic. It's an interesting use of Loki, currently one of Marvel's biggest cash cow characters. Wilson smartly uses Loki in a way that doesn't feel like a mandated appointment by editorial. By including him we're not allowed to forget that even though Kamala is based in New Jersey and will continue to effectively patrol mostly just New Jersey she is still a part of the much larger Marvel universe. Ultimately, Loki does that while also teaching Kamala a valuable lesson: there are more ways to solve your problems than by smashing them. It's a sweet moment for the young heroine, especially the following moment with her best friend. Wilson seems to smartly avoid the "friendzone" cliche. This could lead to a more ultimately satisfying character development for both characters. 

Filling in on art duties this issue is Elmo Bondoc, his art is fun and fits the style that Ms. Marvel requires following Alphona's work. The real hero in the art department is colorist Ian Herring who's coloring remains consistent and immediately pulls the reader into the book making Bondoc's art feel similar to Alphona's even though it isn't at all. 

After a full year, Ms. Marvel is still running smoothly with excellent issue after excellent issue. As long as Wilson is on board writing I don't expect that to change any time soon.

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