In this special issue, we get a break from Ms. Marvel’s regular action to focus on what happens when evil tries to thwart the electoral system. Is it good?
Ms. Marvel #13 (Marvel Comics)
It’s just another Monday at school for Kamala, but things get fishy when her sister-in-law’s brother shows up in her class. Turns out that overnight, the entire town has been redistricted, just in time for election day.
With some help from Mike, Kamala realizes who is behind the maneuver, but the only way to change things isn’t with superhero powers, but good old fashioned getting out the vote.
Is It Good?
Hoo boy, this was really hard to read a few weeks after this year’s election, especially knowing how much I would have loved reading it when I assume it was supposed to come out, before the election. Because this is such a perfect way for an all ages book to tackle this topic–have the political characters be from within the comic world, give real world information in a direct, but non-didactic way, show the superhero setting aside her powers and working with the community, show the power real people have.
I’m comparing this to the book I reviewed a few weeks ago, the election special issue of Faith. That issue was so well-intentioned, but by using Hillary Clinton in the issue and having Faith ruminate on the importance of voting while fighting a supervillain, it didn’t have the power that this story did.
Wilson and team do a great job of making this feel just like any other issue of Ms. Marvel, with the same mix of humor, teenage angst, and upbeat belief in the power of doing good, and giving it an election day spin. Maybe it seems silly to say, but I really do think this is a book you could give to a teenager to help them see why voting (and actually caring about what you are voting for) matters. Andolfo and Herring do a wonderful job setting the tone of the book; I especially love the faces of the various non-voters Kamala has to kick into gear. Also, I want that Joelle Jones cover as a poster.
It’s a shame that this issue got pushed back from its intended release date. I think if I had read this before Election Day, it would have made me feel excited to vote and about the possibilities of what could happen. Now it just makes me feel sad. But I believe in what Willow has to say and hopefully in a couple years when voting day arrives again, I can reread this to get inspired.