Comics
Published September 27, 2023

The History of Ms. Marvel and Captain Marvel

Revisit the evolution of Ms. Marvel and Captain Marvel's relationship, from Kamala's Inhuman beginnings to the Avengers to 'Civil War II' and beyond.

Many younger heroes in the Marvel Universe have been inspired by the super heroes who came before them. In this grand tradition, Kamala Khan followed in Carol Danvers' footsteps to become Ms. Marvel. After gaining powers of her own, Kamala has had the good fortune to not only meet Captain Marvel, but also work closely together with her, both as a duo and as teammates on the Avengers.

Of course, no relationship maintains perfect harmony at all times, and the dynamic between Captain Marvel and Ms. Marvel is no different in that regard. Carol and Kamala have definitely hit their own rough patches over the years, including one particularly bitter falling out that threatened to derail their friendship for good. Fortunately, the two heroes have managed to overcome their differences as they endure the tumultuous pressures of being a super hero.

Let's look back at the relationship between Carol Danvers and Kamala Khan, who went from fangirl to protégé to friends across their shared history.

A CHILDHOOD HERO

Kamala was always a huge fan of the Marvel Universe's super heroes, but Carol Danvers managed to stand out from the crowd. Kamala closely tracked Carol's super hero trajectory, from her early career as Ms. Marvel to the day she took on the Captain Marvel mantle and beyond. Then, Kamala's life changed forever when she witnessed Captain Marvel protecting innocents from Yon-Rogg in CAPTAIN MARVEL (2012) #14.

The experience had a profound effect on Kamala, which she recalled after gaining her own super-powers from the Inhuman Terrigen Mists in MS. MARVEL (2014) #1. After claiming the Ms. Marvel title for herself and fashioning a super hero costume inspired by Carol's own, Kamala became Jersey City's resident super hero and defended its inhabitants against all kinds of strange and incredible threats.

THE FIRST TEAM-UP

Several months into her super hero career, Kamala finally met Carol when the latter ventured into Jersey City during the build-up to SECRET WARS (2015). As Kamala searched for her kidnapped brother Amir, she ran into Carol amidst the growing chaos across her hometown in MS. MARVEL (2014) #17. Though Carol was initially unsure about a young hero taking on her old moniker, Kamala quickly won her over as they quelled the crisis in Jersey City together and rescued Amir from the super villains Kamala had been fighting on her own.

Impressed by Kamala's determination to save her city, Carol gave her teenage counterpart her tacit approval to continue operating under the Ms. Marvel mantle. In another show of confidence, Carol gave Kamala a device that would signal to her, no matter how far away she was, whenever Kamala felt she needed backup. Though Kamala could barely contain her inner fangirl around Carol, the two heroes proved to be an effective team, with Captain Marvel becoming a strong mentor figure.

AN AVENGER AT LAST

After admiring Earth's Mightiest Heroes all her life, Kamala finally got the chance to join them shortly after the Marvel Multiverse was restored in the wake of SECRET WARS (2015). When Ms. Marvel, the new Nova Sam Alexander, and Miles Morales' Spider-Man helped the Avengers take down the alien invader Warbringer, Iron Man formally offered them a place on the Avengers in ALL-NEW, ALL-DIFFERENT AVENGERS (2015) #3, which Kamala eagerly accepted. Though Captain Marvel was busy leading both the Carol Corps and the all-women super team A-Force, she still occasionally checked in on her friend and protégé.

While on the Avengers, Kamala spent more time with her fellow young heroes—specifically Nova and Spider-Man—as they defended the Marvel Universe together. Throughout this experience, the trio maintained their sense of idealism and youthful innocence, even after enduring harrowing battles. This gradually set the stage for an acrimonious rift between Ms. Marvel and Captain Marvel when an ideological conflict within the super hero community took shape.

THE CIVIL WAR SPLIT

After the emergence of a precognitive Inhuman named Ulysses, Captain Marvel decided to use him to proactively stop crimes and other catastrophes before they could occur. To help with this new strategy, Carol personally recruited Kamala to head the Carol Corps and apprehend future criminals identified by Ulysses' visions. This led to tensions that came to a head in CIVIL WAR II (2016), where Captain Marvel split the super hero community into two sides over her interpretation of Ulysses' futures and her hardline approach to predicted crimes.

Ms. Marvel sided with Iron Man, who vehemently opposed Captain Marvel's agenda, and informed Carol that she could no longer support her; as a result, Carol saw Kamala as someone willing to aid and abet criminals. The deep rift remained between Kamala and Carol even after the conflict concluded, which led Ms. Marvel, Spider-Man, and Nova to quit the Avengers in disgust over Captain Marvel's direction for the team. Instead, the young heroes formed their own super hero team, dubbed the Champions. Together, they defended those who were overlooked by the Avengers and promoted a more idealistic way of saving the day.

RECONCILIATION

Although Kamala and Carol's friendship remained on considerably shakier ground for a while after CIVIL WAR II (2016), they began to patch things up between them little by little. In GENERATIONS: MS. MARVEL & MS. MARVEL (2017) #1, Kamala was transported back in time to the beginning of Carol's professional career, where she gained a better understanding of Carol's background and perspective. By MARVEL TEAM-UP (2019) #4, the two effectively worked together again, with Carol providing guidance to Kamala on both her super hero and personal lives.

Since CIVIL WAR II (2016), Captain Marvel has come a long way by learning to deal with her own unresolved traumas and the anger issues that fueled her hardline stance. Similarly, Kamala has grown into an even more competent and self-sufficient super hero and continues to do the mantle of Ms. Marvel proud as Jersey City's greatest defender. Whenever Captain Marvel and Ms. Marvel work together, they are a nigh-unstoppable team.

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