MS. MARVEL #19
Writer: G. Willow Wilson
Penciller: Marco Failla
Colorist: Ian Herring
Letterer: Joe Caramanga
Release Date: June 14, 2017
Plot: Ms. Marvel battles with Lockdown and her new villain companion Discord!
Story: Want to read Ms. Marvel but don’t know where to start? Ms. Marvel #19 starts the brand-new arc titled “Mecca.” So, what are you waiting for!? This issue is laden with heaping helpings of culture from page 1. We follow Kamala into the traditional Eid Al-Adha and find ourselves seated at a table with her family and Kamala’s one “Gora” friend, Zoe. There we accompany them as they indulge on the poor, adorable goat named “flossie” that our hero failed to save from being cooked into biryani and stored in their bellies, hers included.
But of course, as it always, something is amiss. Ms. Marvel #19 takes on gentrification head on. While this isn’t vetted as a Secret Empire Tie-in, we can see the effects as they come across flyers that demand the that dwellers “Bring back the real Jersey City.” Has a ring similar to “Make America Great Again,” does it not? In either case, Kamala find herself face to face with K.I.N.D, the Keepers of Integration, Normalization and Deference Agency. They are in search of people with super powers, specifically so they can apprehend them and take them away. Pointing out the parallels would be redundant at this point.
Something G. Willow Wilson does with Ms. Marvel is point out the political and social issues as it relates to the people they effect. More often than not, Ms. Marvel isn’t fighting directly against a villain, but rather an ideology. And rarely ever is it her “embiggened” fists that solve the problem fully (though they are a major help). It is her spirit of love and equality that proves to be her most effective weapon. This character is one of the most inspiring that I’ve ever read and it brings joy to my heart to see culture and social justice passion shared on comic book pages. Right now, Ms. Marvel is the embodiment of what America should be.
Art: I noticed that the art changed on the book, but this isn’t a bad thing. I love Marco Failla on this book just as much as Gaston. Expression is a key staple to this book, and really any comics that focus heavily on characterization like this one. The work he puts on the faces of these characters is well noted. I feel that he somehow makes Kamala look older, and this isn’t really a good or bad thing, it’s just a different take. Still, no matter who is on the line art, Ian keeps it all together with the colors. He has a distinct style that fits Ms. Marvel, and I really feel that he is niche on this book.
Verdict: This was a very good opening issue. The stage is set, and with a new social issue to combat, Ms. Marvel is going to have to go into action armed with her same staunch ideology to defeat this one. With her brother captured and her old foe Becky St. Jude in the mix along with the new, mysterious Discord, it seems that Ms. Marvel is going to have to rise to new heights to conquer these threats.
Star Rating: 5 out of 5