New Marvel series and movies are being released at a breakneck pace, but the introduction of its newest star deserves special notice. The first trailer for Ms. Marvel, a new TV series that introduces the extended universe’s first Muslim superhero, was published on March 15 by Marvel Studios.
Iman Vellani, a 19-year-old rookie (the series is reported on IMDB as her first-ever credit), plays the titular role, while Zenobia Shroff and Mohan Kapur, longtime actors, play her parents. Bisha K. Ali, who has previously written for Loki and the television adaption of Four Weddings and a Funeral, devised the show, which launches on June 8.
Ms. Marvel revolves around Kamala Khan, a newcomer to the Marvel universe who first appeared in 2013. Khan is from Jersey City, New Jersey, and she has the ability to change her shape and appearance. Ms. Marvel is a name that has been used by various characters before her, including Carol Danvers (who Brie Larsen plays in Captain Marvel). In the comics, she’s known for collaborating with Captain Marvel and Wolverine, and eventually joining The Avengers.
Given the Marvel universe’s penchant for high-profile cameos, we should expect to see some of the franchise’s biggest names in Ms. Marvel. The teaser establishes Ms. Marvel’s tone—unknown it’s whether the animated text shown here will be included in the series—but it certainly amps up the quirkiness, balancing Kamala’s coming-of-age story with a few doses of glossy MCU action. (It also makes terrific use of The Weeknd’s “Blinding Lights,” which is practically meant for trailers like this one.)
Vellani is endearing in the same way that Tom Holland’s aw-shucks Spider-Man is endearing, while also throwing in a few witty jokes that feel more at home in cerebral teen comedy like The Edge of Seventeen or Easy A. She hasn’t done much press for the show yet, but she did speak about the possible influence Ms. Marvel could have on fans in an August 2021 interview with Variety.
“What’s significant is that the show is being made and that this character is being included in the MCU,” Vellani added. “I don’t have to go out of my way to talk about being a Muslim or a Pakistani; it’s all there in the performance.” People seeing someone like me participate in such a large undertaking should be enough to inspire them.”
Over the last few years, Marvel has been chastised for its lack of diversity in its films. In recent years, the studio has expanded its cast of characters. Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings, in particular, received a lot of positive press, whilst Eternals received a lot of negative press.
Ms. Marvel is one of a slew of new superhero TV shows coming to Disney+ this year, including Oscar Isaac’s Moon Knight, Tatiana Maslany’s She-Hulk, and Samuel L. Jackson’s Secret Invasion, both of which star longstanding franchise member Samuel L. Jackson. Vellani will also star alongside Larson and Jackson in the 2023 feature The Marvels.