Ms. Marvel: Crushed

Ms. Marvel: Crushed
Ms Marvel Crushed review
  • North American Publisher / ISBN: Marvel - 978-0-7851-9227-5
  • Volume No.: 3
  • Release date: 2015
  • UPC: 9780785192275
  • Contains adult content?: no
  • Does this pass the Bechdel test?: yes
  • Positive minority portrayal?: yes
  • CATEGORIES: Superhero

The third Kamala Khan Ms. Marvel collection follows the standard current practice of coming out almost immediately after the individual comics have been published. It’s quite thin, only including four issues of the regular title (some websites claim that it also includes a non-existent Annual), and the entire volume features fill-in artists. Elmo Bondoc pencils a short Valentine’s Day story that features the heroic(ish) Loki, and Takeshi Miyazawa illustrates a long story that sees Kamala contacted by another, less pleasant, faction of Inhumans (a story that ties in to events in the Inhuman title). Both artists do their best to maintain the atmosphere of Ms. Marvel as an atypical superhero comic, and Miyazawa’s manga sensibilities are certainly appropriate, but regular Ms. Marvel artist Adrian Alphona is missed. Ian Herring is still responsible for colours, and does a fine job, with understated and subtle hues.

Fortunately, G. Willow Wilson is still on top form with the writing. Romance starts to enter the life of Kamala Khan, both through her friend Bruno’s unexpressed and unrequited crush on her, and Kamran, who is both approved of by her parents and also gorgeous. As well as developing Kamala, Wilson continues to build the supporting characters. In particular Kamala’s brother Aamir is revealed as far more sympathetic and multilayered than was the initial impression.

Overall, with the lack of Alphona and the shortness of story, this is the weakest of the early Ms. Marvel volumes, but that’s only falling a little short of a pretty high standard. These are still some of the best comics published in 2015.

This collection also includes a story from S.H.I.E.L.D. in which Ms. Marvel guest-stars. Written by Mark Waid and drawn by Humberto Ramos, this largely shows that other writers are not quite as good as Wilson at writing Kamala. Variant covers round out the package, and the series continues with Last Days.