Ms. Marvel (Khan) and Spider-Man (Parker) flying through the air. Image: Marvel Comics.

Why This Upcoming ‘Ms. Marvel’ Comic is Upsetting to So Many Readers

This article contains major spoilers for Spider-Man #26 and Ms. Marvel’s storyline in Marvel comics.

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Amazing Spider-Man #26 is coming out on May 31, but a major plot development has already been announced online—and Ms. Marvel fans are livid. Marvel has confirmed that Kamala will die in the issue, with a followup comic, Fallen Friend: The Death of Ms. Marvel, coming out in July.

The choice to kill off Kamala is bizarre for a number of reasons.

First off, she’s one of the newest and youngest characters in the Marvel universe. A teenage superhero, Ms. Marvel first appeared in August 2013, making the character than ten years old. Secondly, she doesn’t even die in her own series, but rather as part of a Spider-Man storyline. That choice is an obvious case of fridging, or killing off a female character to further a male character’s emotional growth. That problem is compounded when you consider that Kamala is Marvel’s first Muslim and South Asian American superhero to star in their own series.

Finally, Kamala isn’t even surrounded by her closest friends when she dies. In the past, Kamala has worked with a group of teen superheroes called the Champions, growing particularly close to Miles Morales. What is the point, exactly, of killing Kamala off in a Peter Parker storyline? It just seems like sloppy, haphazard writing.

Marvel fans on Twitter are understandably up in arms about the development.

So does this mean Ms. Marvel is really dead?

Oh my goodness, heavens no. Come on, characters die in comics all the time—and then they’re brought right back. Death in the comic book world is meaningless. It’s a trite plot device that comics publishers trot out for the sake of drama, never seeming to realize that the more maudlin a character’s death is, the goofier it always looks in retrospect.

Plus, why would Marvel kill off Kamala when her Marvel Cinematic Universe counterpart is appearing in The Marvels next November? It doesn’t make any sense. Some fans are speculating that whatever “new” Kamala shows up in the comics will be more in line with the MCU version: a mutant instead of an inhuman, with the power to manipulate cosmic energy instead of Kamala’s more traditional embiggening abilities.

So, if you’re worried that you’ll never get to read about Kamala again, don’t worry—I bet she’ll be back. Instead, redirect that emotional energy into anger about the insult to one of Marvel’s best characters.

(featured image: Marvel Comics)

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Julia Glassman
Julia Glassman (she/her) holds an MFA from the Iowa Writers' Workshop, and has been covering feminism and media since 2007. As a staff writer for The Mary Sue, Julia covers Marvel movies, folk horror, sci fi and fantasy, film and TV, comics, and all things witchy. Under the pen name Asa West, she's the author of the popular zine 'Five Principles of Green Witchcraft' (Gods & Radicals Press). You can check out more of her writing at <a href=""></a>