Ms. Marvel Trailer Breakdown: Kamala Khan Enters The MCU With Brand New Powers
The next big Marvel Cinematic Universe show is set to debut this summer, as the first trailer for "Ms. Marvel" reveals the premiere date for the highly anticipated series. Mark your calendars for June, Marvel fans, as this will mark the live-action debut of fan-favorite character Khamala Khan, who took up the mantle of the superhero in the pages of Marvel Comics in 2014 and has since become a hugely popular character within the publisher's canon. And she's also poised to become a huge part of the MCU overall, as Iman Vellani, who is bringing the hero to life, will also be starring in "The Marvels" alongside Brie Larson's Carol Danvers next year.
With all of that in mind, we figured it would be a good idea to take a much closer look at the first "Ms. Marvel" teaser trailer, breaking it down bit by bit to see what we can learn about this hero's forthcoming debut on the small screen. Let's dig in, shall we?
The very first shot of the trailer sets the stage for Kamala's mindset at the beginning of the show. We see her a little obsessed with superheroes, daydreaming in class and sketching interesting things instead of paying attention. For example, she has a sketch of Ant-Man, but then a bizarre "Man-Ant" right next to him, among other things, including a note that she has a driving lesson today. She's still very much a kid, that much is clear, much like Peter Parker was when he was first recruited by Tony Stark in "Captain America: Civil War."
Before we even get to the Marvel title card, we get a real sense of Iman Vellani's Kamala Khan and her daydream state. The whole first bit of the trailer is done in a really comic book-y style, with word bubbles and the like to demonstrate that our young protagonist is very much obsessed with superheroes and the idea of becoming one herself. She can't focus on much else, and the way the creatives behind the show are choosing to demonstrate that is pretty unique.
I get itDisney+
Here, we have someone at Kamala's school, seemingly an advisor or perhaps even an assistant principal or someone of the like, attempting to relate to Kamala and her issues. This is not something that Kamala responds to particularly well.
This also gives us a further sense of how the early bits of the show before she gets her powers are going to be stylized. It's not clear how much this word bubble gag is going to be used, be it selectively or quite a bit in the early goings. Either way, it's pretty unique and leans into the very comic book-y nature of the character.
Another Avengers shirtDisney+
We then get another fun little Easter egg that both connects the show to the wider MCU, in addition to showcasing just how obsessed Kamala is with superheroes, particularly Captain Marvel. He shirt features Wasp, Captain Marvel, and Valkyrie on it, seemingly with a bit of an educational message, with all three of the heroes wearing glasses. One can only imagine Marvel and Disney already have this shirt printed up and ready to ship as soon as the show drops.
Hello, Zoe ZimmerDisney+
This marks the introduction of Laurel Marsden as Zoe Zimmer, an important character from the comics. She goes to the same school as Kamala (Coles Academic High School to be specific) and is the smart, popular girl that runs in a very different crowd. Hence the devil horns. Not to continue to make Spider-Man comparisons, but Zoe's dynamic with Kamala might be akin to Flash Thompson in relation to Peter Parker.
This shot is interesting as we see the suit that Kamala later wears in the trailer after she gets her powers. It's clear that this is just her "training wheels" suit and it appears that it might just be a display item at a local convenience store, one that appears to be a fixture of our hero's neighborhood (more on that later).
In the reverse of this same shot we get to meet a hugely important character from the comics in the form of Bruno Carrelli, played here by Matt Lintz. So yes, we should totally talk about Bruno even though the folks in "Encanto" don't like to do that sort of thing. He is Kamala's best friend and the only person in her inner-circle that knows she's a superhero. Everyone needs that confidant, and Bruno is Kamala's guy.
Well hello, Kamran!Disney+
Here's another guy we should absolutely talk about. This appears to be Kamran, played by Rish Shah, someone who was close to the Khan family in the comics and who Kamala (and lots of other girls) appear to be crushing on hard here.
Now, something of note in the comics is that he eventually gets exposed to Terrigen Mist and becomes an Inhuman. Are they going to go that route in the MCU? There is no indication of that here just yet but this being the MCU, there are long games involved.
Sweet, Sweet fantasyDisney+
This sequence sees Kamala literally fanaticizing about being an actual superhero cut from the same cloth as Captain Marvel, with her heroically jumping out of a window only to land in the perfect superhero pose. After that, she is imagining being celebrated for her accomplishments with a big spectacle — fireworks, flowers, the whole deal.
She also has Carol Danvers' comic-accurate mohawk look from the comics upon the landing, which is a nice touch and a little nod to the source material.
Now, we catch up with Kamala and Bruno chilling on a rooftop pondering life. At this point, the voiceover indicates that Kamala may be relenting, wondering if everyone else is right and that she does indeed spend a bit too much time daydreaming. Not to spoil it but dreams do come true, and for her it is absolutely going to happen sooner rather than later.
The Kamala Khan version of Ms. Marvel is so significant because she was the first Muslim character to headline a mainstream superhero comic book. This shot and the little sequence that follows makes it very clear that the show is not going to shy away from that part of Kamala's life, which is hugely important and marks a big moment for representation in superhero cinema. Yes, she's starting out on the small screen but this hero will be in the movies as well starting next year. This is a big deal and a big step forward.
Captain Marvel tributeDisney+
Here, we see Kamala Khan looking at a cool tribute to her biggest superhero idol, Captain Marvel. A tribute of sorts has been put together to honor her and it is very flashy. Clearly, following the events of "Avengers: Endgame," the world has taken a shine to the hero.
Now we get to the hero stuff (kinda) as Kamala is seen staring at herself in the mirror in a very "bought it at the mall" version of her superhero outfit. This looks like a jacket that was modeled after Captain Marvel that she purchased to live out her fantasies maybe, but it is really the first time we're seeing her look ready for action.
Every superhero needs parents, right? In this case, we have Kamala's mom, Muneeba Khan, played by Zenobia Shroff. She appears to be disapproving of some things going on in her daughter's life, but there is still a loving and caring vibe at the center of it all.
This shot is important, in that, we see just how deep Kamala's obsession runs. Her bike helmet is even modeled after Captain Marvel, which we can see her holding in her hands as she looks over the city with a bit of a melancholy vibe going on. She really, really wants to be a superhero. Be careful what you wish for, Kamala.
Now we're getting to the meat on these bones, as we see Kamala digging around in a secret little hideaway, which appears to be an attic. Batman has the Batcave, Kamala Khan as an attic with a trunk full of superhero things in it. Different strokes. But this is truly the turning point in the trailer as we're getting into real-deal superhero territory now. There is also an important line here where she says it's "not really the brown girls from Jersey City who save the world." Little does she know how wrong she's about to be.
Now, we need to talk about this whole thing. It appears that Kamala finds a cosmic bracelet of sorts that grants her powers that are very unlike her stretchy powers from the comics. This differs wildly from the source material and is surely to be a giant topic of discussion amongst those who loved writer G. Willow Wilson's run on the character that made her what she is.
That having been said, it's not the first time Marvel has done this with a popular character, as Scarlet Witch had pretty different powers on screen when she was introduced in "Age of Ultron" compared to the comics. So this might need to be a "wait and see" thing but it is a talking point to be certain.
From here on out, things are a whole lot more super and a whole let less daydream-y. We see Kamala slipping from what looks to be a very real-world situation into a more fantastical, cosmic one, which makes for a pretty cool shot.
It's also worth noting that she looks pretty surprised and overwhelmed here. For as much as she dreamed about this, Kamala may not actually be ready for what this whole superhero business entails.
This shot might be the first hint at something sinister in the trailer as we see some ominous smoke pouring through a doorway, with Kamala looking on in horror. There is not a whole lot by way of specifics in this trailer regarding the threat that Kamala will face in her first superhero adventure, but this is the first hint that something sinister is indeed around the corner.
Now we meet Aamir, played by Saagar Shaikh, who is Kamala's older brother. In this sequence, he is wondering if something happened to his sister (which it clearly has) and she understandably gets pretty defensive right off the bat. One can imagine she is going to be fumbling the ball initially in trying to hide her new super-self.
We're not done with the family business yet as we've still got to meet dad, Yusuf Kahn, played by Mohan Kapur.
Here, he is hearing something going on in his daughter's room, and she is trying desperately to keep this superpower business under wraps. Again, it's easy to imagine comedy being extracted from this as it plays out on screen.
Goodbye, Circle QDisney+
Remember that friendly neighborhood corner store we were at earlier? Well, it seems in the MCU that nothing is safe as the Circle Q is blown to smithereens here. It is not clear who or what caused the explosion, or if anyone was inside, but this is probably going to be hitting very close to home for our hero.
Kamala's new powersDisney+
This is where we really start to see Ms. Marvel in action, as she and Bruno are talking over her newfound abilities, with a demonstration to follow. Rather than be all stretchy and elastic as she is in the comics, she has cosmic powers of sorts, with her hands glowing and the ability to make cosmic ... things? It's a bit ill-defined and broad as portrayed here.
She even says that it feels "cosmic" to hit the nail on the head. Again, people are going to feel of two minds about this but the team felt adapting the character to screen required some changes. It is also worth considering that a "Fantastic Four" reboot is on the way and another stretchy superhero in the form of Reed Richards will be joining the MCU. Perhaps this was about making a distinction?
Next, we get one of the more heroic shots in the trailer, which sees Kamala glowing with all of her new cosmic energy, leaping from building to building in true superhero fashion. This is what her dreams were made of and it's a reality now.
Again, there isn't a lot by way of specifics regarding the villains for "Ms. Marvel" just yet, but this sequence appears to be hinting at the baddies, with some not-so-friendly looking, well-dressed folks appearing here.
It's really about the way it's framed in the trailer that screams "bad guys" but it's tough to articulate. It is worth noting that rumors (though unconfirmed) have circulated that a brand new entity dubbed NICE will be the villains in the show. This is not based on anything in the comics so anything beyond the rumor would be wildly speculative at this stage, but perhaps these are the NICE people?
Who is that running?Disney+
Here, we get a bit of a disconnected sequence that sees someone running feverishly through a field before we get this shot of a large group walking somewhere that is clearly far removed from Jersey City, where the rest of the action is taking place.
Is this a flashback? Who are these characters? Why are we moving away from the city and why is this so important? All we have are questions but it's interesting that they felt the need to include this in the trailer.
In the comics, one of Ms. Marvel's trademarks is her giant, stretchy, powerful fist. Here, we are getting a bit of an homage to that but with a cosmic makeover. It's not a stretchy hand so much as it is one made of cosmic energy. Still, even with the changes, it seems the filmmakers are trying to root this in the source material.
Becoming Ms. MarvelDisney+
This is one of the climactic sequences of the trailer, as we see Kamala pick up her signature head gear from the comics in the form of a somewhat simple eye mask.
So we are definitely getting a more comic-accurate costume as she transitions from her immediate origin story into fully embracing her newfound powers, that much is certain.
More bad guys?Disney+
It would be tough to argue that these well-armored men with guns covered in smoke look like they are friendly to any superheroes in the vicinity, so we can probably safely say they are bad guys, perhaps associated with NICE as well. It is interesting to note that they are in a hallway with lockers, indicating they may be at Kamala's school. Do they know who Ms. Marvel actually is?
The big hero shotDisney+
Right as the trailer nears its conclusion, we get Kamala's big hero moment. In her full, decked-out costume, she is seen using some sort of cosmic shield as part of her new power set to hold back a barrage of bullets and save an innocent bystander. This is her big moment to shine and truly look like a hero in the trailer, and it also gives us a chance to see the full-fledged Ms. Marvel that fans have been waiting an awfully long time for.
'I'm a superhero!'Disney+
Last, but certainly not least, the trailer concludes with Kamala excitedly declaring that she is a superhero, with her dreams coming true. It appears that she's saying this to Bruno before we get a shot of her overlooking the city in full hero form.
It is worth noting that this shot is ripped right from the comics as an homage to "Ms. Marvel" #5 and the cover art that came along with that book. And that's about it! There is a lot to discuss, a great many questions left unanswered, and perhaps a lot to feel optimistic about. We'll see if it all gels come summer time. Fingers crossed.
"Ms. Marvel" premieres June 8, 2022, on Disney+.