Seeing Kamala visit Pakistan and explore her family’s past and how it impacts her present is insightful and profound, and the most entertaining part of the show is when it simply lets us into Kamala’s mundane life. Seeing Kamala just try to explore her complex family dynamics, her conservative older brother, her stern mom, and her well-meaning dad is interesting enough to sustain a whole show, superpowers or not, and their relationship feels more real than most of the ones we’ve seen in the MCU so far. Likewise, Kamala is one of the very few characters in the Marvel universe who has genuine friends who are neither love interests or teammates, and that counts for something.
When Aamir’s wedding was ruined by the arrival of the Clandestine, it is heartbreaking because we’ve spent so much time with these characters and know how much the wedding meant to them, and also because of course, Kamala was going to get all the blame.
We will inevitably reach a point in the story where Kamala puts on her classic suit, fights a giant CGI-laden villain, and joins a hero group. But in the meantime, “Ms. Marvel” is at its best when it forgets about all of that and it just focuses on Kamala Khan the teenage girl from New Jersey.
“Ms. Marvel” is streaming on Disney+.