The Marvel Cinematic Universe’s newest hero Kamala Khan has arrived in Ms. Marvel. There has been plenty of discussion about the changes made to the character’s origins and powers from the comics. But one of the positive outcomes of the changes so far is that they allow for a mystery to play out in the Disney+ series.
It’s already been pointed out that her bangle that seems to have activated Kamala’s powers may actually be similar to the Quantum Bands from the comics. Using evidence from Episode 1, we can theorize about her powers and their implications in the MCU even more. Of course, in the comics, Quantum Bands derive energy from the Quantum Zone—MCU fans would recognize its live-action parallel, the Quantum Realm. Established in the Ant-Man franchise, the Quantum Realm was the key to time travel as seen in Avengers: Endgame. But other than the Quantum Bands theory, what evidence is there that Kamala Khan has anything to do with the Quantum Realm or time-travel in the MCU?
In the comics, Ms. Marvel’s powers function because her molecules time travel when she embiggens and shapeshiftes. Ms. Marvel comics revealed that Kamala has access to some sort of temporal vortex that allows her to borrow and lend her atoms across time. While her MCU powers in Ms. Marvel are significantly different, there’s no reason that this connection to time travel would need to be removed from Kamala’s powers’ characteristics. Considering she projects some sort of crystallized light from nowhere, a similar explanation could easily work for her new powers.
An important moment in Episode 1 occurs when her bangle appears to activate when she first puts it on at AvengerCon. After she is surrounded by some glowy energy field, her eyes change color and there is a cool shot where she seems to fall backward in a circle through a strange purple-hued environment. There are human-like figures there, though they appear to have large glowing eyes and it is difficult to make anything out. This could have been some type of vision, but it also could have been Ms. Marvel’s first trip through time.
Considering her family history is at play, it could have been a very stylized depiction of an event her ancestors went through. Considering her Pakistani heritage and the fact that the scene looked like a large group of people traveling in one direction, Partition in 1947 may have been a major event that affected her family. Perhaps an ancestor with a connection to Kamala’s powers is trying to pull her back for some reason or the connection itself is doing so. A further stretch could be that she passed through the Quantum Realm itself, and the reason the figures looked odd is that they were not human. If you want to stretch it even further, the purple is reminiscent of the iconic color of Kang the Conqueror. The future Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania villain is a time-traveler and some fans believe he may rule a city in the Quantum Realm called Chronopolis.
To be fair, the fact that no one around her experienced that wild moment suggests that the easy explanation is that it was a vision or hallucination. But, considering the fact the Kamala in the comics was always connected to a temporal vortex and constantly time-traveled without even trying, a connection to the Quantum Realm or quantum energy could allow for her to look like she had not left AvengerCon. As Scott Lang himself said, “time works differently in the Quantum Realm”. Or, more simply, she could have essentially been in two places at once. While some of these thoughts are bit more technical and complex than Kamala or Ms. Marvel seems so far, it is worth noting that the Disney+ series hired a theoretical physicist who worked on Endgame’s time-travel elements.
The first episode of Ms. Marvel is now streaming on Disney+.