Let's be honest: Things aren't great for a lot of people right now. It feels like the world is falling apart around us, and we're helpless to stop it. Recently, in an effort to feel a little better, I reread the first run of Ms. Marvel by G. Willow Wilson, Adrian Alphona, Jake Wyatt, Takeshi Miyazawa, and Joe Caramagna, which introduced the world to superhero Kamala Khan. (Kamala was co-created by Sana Amanat and Stephen Wacker, and her amazing costume was designed by Jamie McKelvie.)
Kamala is one of my favorite characters of all time; despite the fact (and let's be honest — because of the fact) that she's a teenager, I find that I learn so much from her every time I read her comics. And in this difficult time, it feels like Kamala is the superhero that all of us need right now. Here are 13 reasons why.
(And if you haven't read the first run of the series, this list may contain some spoilers — but honestly, I don't think seeing individual panels could ever take away from the magic that is this series.)
1. She's a nerd whose unbridled enthusiasm is infectious.
In a world that tells us that being cynical is cool, and unabashedly loving something and having genuine enthusiasm is lame, Kamala is a breath of fresh air.
2. She understands that being a hero isn't about superpowers.
It's about doing the right thing, even when it's hard. Kamala also gets her own value -- it's more important to accept herself for who she is than pretend to be someone she's not.
3. Kamala values her friends and family.
The one thing she wants to do with her superpowers? Help the people who are important to her. But even having superpowers doesn't stop her from just wanting her mom when things get tough.
4. She acknowledges when things are hard.
Kamala may be a superhero, but she still grapples with self-doubt.
5. She understands that actions matter.
What she does, and what she stands up for, determine the kind of superhero she is and the person she is.
6. She tells it like it is.
Even to Wolverine.
8. When she falls down, she yells at herself to GET UP.
Because when you stumble, you just have to keep on going until you get it right.
9. She has a giant pet dog named Lockjaw.
And she will HURT YOU if you mess with him.
10. She also knows that heroes ask for help when they need it.
Even when you have superpowers, it's not good to fight battles alone.
11. She cares. A lot.
Maybe too much. But that's okay -- it's a good thing.
12. She makes excellent faces.
13. No matter how dark things may seem, Kamala Khan always has hope.
It's something we should never forget.