For the month of February, Amelie selected the first fictional influential woman and asked the rest of the group to learn about Ms. Marvel (aka Kamala Khan).
Kamala Khan is a fictional superhero appearing in American comic books published by Marvel Comics. Created by editors Sana Amanat and Stephen Wacker, writer G. Willow Wilson and artist Adrian Alphona, Khan is Marvel’s first Muslim character to headline her own comic book. Khan made her first appearance in Captain Marvel #14 (August 2013) before going on to star in the solo series Ms. Marvel, which debuted in February 2014.Wikipedia
We took advantage of our great public library system and rounded up several copies the first volume of Ms. Marvel, so all of the girls could get to know her before the meeting. Amelie also sent out the following links for more background – TED talk with Ms. Marvel writer G. Willow Wilson, Marvel character page, Kamala Khan Wikipedia page.
To start the meeting, they discussed Kamala while they shared dinner. Amelie asked why they each found her inspiring. Here are some of the great answers:
- Heroes are usually one race, gender, group. It was cool to see a Pakistani teen.
- It’s cool that she could be anyone, but decided to be herself.
- Most superheroes are white men, with some white women.
- It’s a story about learning to accept herself and be proud of who she is.
After dinner, the girls acted out a scene from the first book. They drew numbers for casting parts and all had a great time improvising. Next, in groups of two, they read a quote from Ms. Marvel and then created a quick skit to share with the group. After the skits, they tried their hands at making their own comics. The results were awesome and included a hero saving a cat, Shakespeare’s Juliet with all of the power, and a super avocado saving everyone from a mango who wanted to squish them into guacamole.
The group shared their superpower wish list: super speed, psychic (old lady in a cave), invisibility, shape shifting and the ability to take the villain’s powers.
Finally, they brainstormed ideas for an action. These included creating a Damsels in Progress comic, making a stop action film, making a Damsels in Progress documentary and joining the Captain Marvel challenge (to get girls to see the movie). They finally settled on making a short video with a request to Marvel to create a Ms. Marvel movie.