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In Marvel Comics, Ms Marvel returns as Muslim teen

27 Comments
By MATT MOORE

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27 Comments
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I liked western comics more when they were all about fighting and convoluted story lines. Social engineering, yuck.

-2 ( +5 / -7 )

Why didn't the go the whole 9 yards and make her a lesbian in a wheelchair too?

4 ( +10 / -6 )

Entertainment representative of society? How dare they!

2 ( +4 / -2 )

Hm ok, what is out at Dark Horse and the DC vertigo stand.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Does she have to stop fighting crime 4 times a day to pray?

-3 ( +3 / -6 )

Dennis BauerNov. 06, 2013 - 02:00PM JST

Hm ok, what is out at Dark Horse and the DC vertigo stand.

Unfortunately Vertigo has been all but shut down as an imprint recently.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Does she have to stop fighting crime 4 times a day to pray?

We pray 5 times a day.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

Will she be sending to Pakistan for force marriage in story?

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

How about her stance on Sharia law or that great American staple......hot dogs?

2 ( +5 / -3 )

We pray 5 times a day.

OK, so does she have to stop fighting crime 5 times a day to pray?

-2 ( +3 / -5 )

Should be easy to draw her with the burkha... a black blob. And it will be interesting to see if she is allowed to take on men....

0 ( +2 / -2 )

-It'll be even more interesting to see how the parents of these muslim teens react to them reading the words of Infidels, Non-Believers ans western comic-book writers! get ready for a surge in "Honor Killings"!

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Wow. And the snarky comments and smart-assery come out in force with this story. Because the character is . . . Muslim.

Keeping it classy, America. Keeping it classy.

-1 ( +3 / -4 )

I'm not being snarky, I'm actually wondering. Because other than saying she's Muslim, what makes her Muslim? Surely they'll have to show her practicing the religion.

And if she DOESN'T do religious things to show she's a Muslim, then what kind of roll model is she to her target audience? Wouldn't it then reflect poorly on Muslims? Will Marvel only allow followers of the Muslim faith to write for the title? It's a slippery slope that risks offending people, both Muslim and non-Muslim alike.

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

I'm not being snarky, I'm actually wondering. Because other than saying she's Muslim, what makes her Muslim? Surely they'll have to show her practicing the religion.

Maybe she dispenses Sharia law to super-villians?

Seriously though, presumably Bruce Wayne was brought up as a Christian of some denomination but we don't have to see Batman going to church regularly do we?

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

Because other than saying she's Muslim, what makes her Muslim? Surely they'll have to show her practicing the religion.

Oh, really? Because just being Muslim isn't enough, the character has to prove it via poorly understood stereotypes of what the West thinks Islam is in order to satisfy your, ahem, "curiosity?"

So, if Marvel introduces a character that's gay, that character needs to be depicted engaging in a sexual situation with a member of the same sex in order to validate his or her gayness?

Or, taking it further, if the character's noticeably Asian, he are she needs to demonstrate his or her Asian-ness by what? Excelling at mathematics? If the character is Mormon, he or she needs to proove it by what? Having multiple wives?

If the character is markedly Christian, he or she needs to be shown going to church on Sunday and being ridiculously dismissive and intollerant of other cultures/religions/ethnicities?

Oh, damn. Was I throwing around silly stereotypes in order to sound witty and socially insightful? Sorry about that. I was just kidding, after all.

Over the top? No more so than turning "Sharia Law" into a punchline, along with burkhas, honor killings, and forced marriages, issues that are no joking matter, and prayer five times a day, something we have no more right ridiculing than eating and drinking symbolic representations of the "body and blood of Christ" at a Christian mass or perpetuating the myth that Santa is keeping tabs on the behavior of children the world over.

And it certainly doesn't make it any better following up with an obligatory, *"Just kidding. Hey, I mocked your religion and lumped you in with radicalized sociopaths and murderers, but hey, just kidding."*

The number of mean-spirited stereotypes and snarkiness that cropped up on this thread within the first twelve posts specifically because the topic is about a Muslim comic book character is nauseating.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

I think its kind of cool that they are reinventing characters and giving them diverse backgrounds. Makes it more interesting for the reader.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Well, when gay superheroes are depicted in comics, they usually have a boyfriend/ girlfriend, they kiss members of the same sex, they might be depicted waking up next to their significant other... They show them doing things that visually show "this person is homosexual."

What I'm asking is, how are they going to show that this character is Muslim beyond just issuing a press release that says she is? What would be the point of her even having a religion (as a comic book character) unless she acted on it, or the belief system of that religion came into conflict, or influenced what they did?

I use to read Marvel's New Mutants when I was a kid, and two of the characters were Catholic. One said "madre dios" a lot (which also established he was a Latin American) and one often struggled with her faith and how she felt it conflicted with her powers.

So what I'm saying is, unless they have her actually acting on her Muslim faith, her being announced as a Muslim amounts to not much of anything other than a play for press.

-3 ( +0 / -3 )

Nice try, but you're being disingenous, to say the least. You could have posted what you just posted above. Instead, you chose to post the following:

"Social engineering, yuck."

Followed by:

Does she have to stop fighting crime 4 times a day to pray?

Snarky asshattery of the highest calibre.

Lest you missed it, "Western" comic books have been engaged in what you call "social engineering" for the better part of 70 years, with writers presenting characters and storylines that appeal to the highest number of readers, from Superman battling Nazis and working to to promote American ideals about liberty in the 1940s to Peter Parker battling the trials and tribulations of being the small and weak target of a bullying macho Flash Gordon in the 1960s to Tony Stark's battle with alcoholism in the 1980s.

Comics have always tackled social issues head-on. The only reason you seem to notice it now is because the subject matter involves Muslims.

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

Flash Thompson, that is.

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"She can grow and shrink her limbs and her body and, Willow said, ultimately, she’ll be able to shape shift into other forms."

She'll be hanging out with Odo then.

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First off, I really don't appreciate your name calling on this forum. I don't believe I've done and deliberately insulted anyone.

Secondly, I'm making a valid point. Name a major comic book hero who's main selling point, or point of interest, was their religion. People don't read comics because they care about what religion the fictional character is. Nobody would me more or less attracted to, say, Mr. Fantastic, if he was a Buddhist. I can't begin to tell you what religion Wolverine, Spider-Man, Superman, the Green Lantern, Batman, Catwoman, or any other character is. That's because it's not important. What I hold is that by making religion a cornerstone of a character, they then have to constantly have that character act on their religious convictions, or it doesn't matter.

So I'm saying: how will they do that? How will they show that she's Muslim? Will she have to stop what she's doing to pray? Will she observe Ramadan? How does that even play into being a superhero? It does matter because Marvel is using as THE selling point of the new series.

And the things comics talked about in the past, such as fighting Nazis while we were actually fighting Nazis (who where, in face, pretty bad guys), dealing with bullies, alcoholism, what have you, had nothing what so ever to do with religion. There were religious superheroes in the past, but they were very, very niche market. There has never been a time where Frank Castle killed a bunch of guys and then went to confession and took communion. There was never a time where a mainstream superhero looked to their faith to help guide them in their decision making. It's not that I have a problem with whatever religion they want to say a certain comic book character is... It's fiction!

But you have to recognize that whoever pop culture tries to present something as serious as religion, they're going to mess it up.

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

Secondly, I'm making a valid point. Name a major comic book hero who's main selling point, or point of interest, was their religion. People don't read comics because they care about what religion the fictional character is. Nobody would me more or less attracted to, say, Mr. Fantastic, if he was a Buddhist. I can't begin to tell you what religion Wolverine, Spider-Man, Superman, the Green Lantern, Batman, Catwoman, or any other character is. That's because it's not important. What I hold is that by making religion a cornerstone of a character, they then have to constantly have that character act on their religious convictions, or it doesn't matter.

Good point. If Marvel presented a character as Jewish, Catholic, Hindu, etc., then invariably that character's religious convictions will be represented or shown to some degree at some point in her storyline. Otherwise, what's the point of highlighting or even mentioning his or her religion in the first place? For instance, they could simply mention a character as having Irish or Indian ancestry without having to say that they're Catholic or Hindu.

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

@HCKpro The best thing I can tell you is wait and see. You stated that in the past they made a point to show little jesters that a person was of a particular faith or sexual orientation and I'm sure that will be the case as well. Also, I have to agree with some of the points defending this new character, the way a person present a question or states their opinion tells you a lot about their thought process and their perception of a subject.

@Kobuta Chan

Will she be sending to Pakistan for force marriage in story?

Arranged or a you put it "forced marriages" are practiced all over the world by every form of religion you can think of and it is practiced by people who do not believe in a God at all. If you are Asian I would strongly suggest looking into your cultural history, especially your countries rulers.

@WiliB

Should be easy to draw her with the burkha... a black blob. And it will be interesting to see if she is allowed to take on men...

The story stated she is the "daughter of Pakistani immigrants living in Jersey City" I don't know if you live in New Jersey and have seen women walking around in burkha but I have not, then again I live in New York. Also most women living in Pakistan do not wear burkha, your geography is wrong, you are thinking about Afghanistan but then again it is not unusual for people who think the way you do to lump other people into one group.

However you did have a good point when you said " it will be interesting to see if she is allowed to take on men..." to that all I can say is what I said before, wait and see. The funny thing is that I bet most of the people posting here are not going to read it but they feel the need to comment.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

HCKpro: It's not necessarily WHAT you are saying as much as HOW you are saying it -- as snide remarks and sarcasm -- at least in your first few posts. LFR is bang on in that comics have always tackled social issues, but you mock that in your first post (then backtrack). As he said, you're only taking issue because she's being depicted as a Muslim. How about you wait and see the storylines and THEN start criticising that it's not a true depiction of a Muslim if they don't fit the bill. Glad you're so pro-Muslim, though.

Anyway, it's good that they're trying to aim to a larger and more mixed demographic. But really I don't see what all the hub-bub is about. Are people complaining about blue shape-shifters in the comics? Those complaining remind me of the people who complain about CARTOONS not being 'realistic'.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

It is an interesting idea. It might imprive the image of Muslims. Some of the people who have made anti-muslim comments may even learn that many, I would guess most, Muslims brought up in the West do not have forced marriages, pray 5 times a day or refuse tor drink alcohol, just as most Christians do not go to Church every Sunday or love their enemy or even their neighbour. Disapproving of Obamacare could be described as disapproving of charity.

I approve of any ideas that reduce religious prejudice and this seems like a good one.

It is now possible to have black heros in America. It is now time to have some brown, muslim heros.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

As-salamu alaykum, Ms. Marvel.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

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