Ms. Marvel’s powers changed and fans aren’t happy

Marvel’s teenage superhero might have lost one of her most important powers.

words by: Alee Kwong
Dec 12, 2021

Recently released artwork for Ms. Marvel shows that the young Kamala Khan will be keeping her comic book costume, but her powers will be adjusted for the new Marvel Studios series. The role of Ms. Marvel is set to be played by Iman Vellani, and the teenage superhero is one of Phase 4’s most anticipated newcomers. Following the conclusion of Ms. Marvel, it is confirmed that Kamala Khan will team up with Captain Marvel (played by Brie Larson) and Monica Rambeau/Photon (played by Teyonah Parris) in The Marvels, which will be directed by Nia DaCosta.



Involvement in The Marvels

In DaCosta’s interview with Inverse, she talks about the involvement of all three female superheroes and how she plans to incorporate them in her new film. “It’s interesting, and something we thought about and worked through a lot, which was how do we get each of these really big, exciting heroes space in a two-hour film? A lot of what we’ve been thinking about is what part of the journey do we need to see for each of them? How do we honor the part of the story they’re at in terms of the canon, while also within our story making them equal?”


Ms. Marvel is a fairly recent addition to Marvel’s library of superheroes. While on the greener side of the Marvel Comics roster, she is easily recognizable to newer Marvel fans. Due to her sweeping popularity and importance (in terms of diversity and inclusion), high expectations have been set for this new Disney+ series and Marvel is fully expected to meet them when it adapts her character. This includes her backstory, personality, costume, and of course, her abilities.


Ms. Marvel’s powers

In the comics, Kamala Khan was an ordinary Muslim-Pakistani teenager from New Jersey, until an unexpected exposure to the Terrigen Mist turned her into an Inhuman. Similar to mutants, members of this human subspecies (those of which were originally genetic experiments by the hands of the Kree), typically possess at least one superpower. Their superpowers begin to manifest following a transformation process known as Terrigenesis. When Kamala experienced it, she gained the ability to “embiggen” herself — meaning that she can enlarge and extend her limbs.



Normally, Kamala is seen using the embiggen power in combat, but she’s capable of so much more. She can increase (or decrease) the size of her entire body at once, her shapeshifting allows her to completely alter her body structure, hair, and facial features, which comes in handy when disguises are needed. An additional ability that Ms. Marvel sports in the comics books is a healing factor. While she does not have the durability to defend herself from bullets and brute force, the healing ability gives her a leg up when it comes to fatal injuries.


How the MCU might be changing her powers

In the Ms. Marvel artwork, you can see that her embiggened hand looks more like a crystal-like force around her hand. Her actual hand is separate from the crystal fist, which might mean that the MCU is planning on ditching Ms. Marvel’s stretching ability and taking in an energy-force direction.


There is speculation that the reason behind changing Khan’s embiggen power has a lot to do with CGI.  Marvel Studios may have figured that opting for the mega-band usage, which would play out similar to Green Lantern’s powers, could be easier for post-production and still falls in the realm of plausibility. While it makes sense in terms of cutting down post-production effort, the CGI technology has been made available for some time now (just look at Reed Richards/Mr. Fantastic in Fox’s The Fantastic Four) and since then there have been considerable CGI advancements.


There’s a lot of fan approval riding on this series, more so than any of the other scheduled Marvel/Disney+ series, so let’s hope they get it right. Ms. Marvel is set to release on Disney+ sometime in 2022.


In other entertainment news, here are some actors that have been in Marvel movies more than once, Brendan Fraser has been casted in the new Batgirl film, and the new Lightyear trailer shows us a different version of Buzz.


Photo via Marvel