This article contains spoilers for episode five of Ms. Marvel.
The penultimate episode of Ms. Marvel took us back in time and across the world – breaking some of the MCU’s time travel rules along the way.
Until the very last scene of the episode, you’d be forgiven for thinking that you were watching the finale by mistake. The time travel twist from last week was quickly resolved, meaning we returned from Partition-era India by the episode’s halfway point.
As we know from established lore, going back in time creates a separate timeline that deviates from our own, rather than triggering a butterfly effect in the present.
Here, as it was in Kamala’s destiny, she comes back to the same present day she left – must be the magic of the Noor. But it’s this return to present day that sets up the finale.
After the opening of the veil that would engulf both Earth and their home territory, Najma sacrifices her life to close it in the hopes of saving her son Kamran – which, in the process, transfers her powers to him.
So, with the Clandestine leader out of the way, does this mean that Kamran will now take over this villain role?
Introduced as a mysterious new love interest earlier in the season, the episode finale suggests he could become something much more complicated.
After swiftly reconciling with her son in order to save Earth, Najma transferred her powers over to him – although the Ms. Marvel series has deviated from the comics, a quick look at them lets us know what we could expect.
In the comics, both Kamran and Kamala are Inhumans, having been granted their powers through Terrigen Mist. Kamala’s origin story has changed here, with no connections to that event (even if a Kree hand was visible in the episode three prologue).
However, Kamran’s story has remained more faithful to the comics, where he was introduced in 2015. There his entire body emits a glowing bluish energy, which he can release as blasts or channel to cause objects to explode.
From the brief sequence we see in this episode, that looks to also be the case here, right down to the colour of the energy he projects.
But this still leaves one question unanswered: will gaining these new powers turn him into a villain?
The Final Boss
In a series that’s introduced several villains along the way (with this week also teasing the return of Damage Control who have been recently absent), could the big bad have been one of the love interests all along?
That’s certainly the case in the Ms. Marvel comics. In issue 14 of Ms. Marvel Volume 3, Kamran and Kamala bond over their similar powers – a variation on the crush story we saw earlier this season.
However, Kamran is soon recruited by mob boss Lineage (another figure with Inhuman powers), finding himself kidnapping Kamala in order to bring her to him.
We’re not expecting this to happen here – but with the sudden reappearance of Damage Control, we can’t rule out Kamala getting kidnapped and brought to the DODC by the boy she’s crushing on.
Kamran is already on the run from the organisation – but as we know from previous episodes, a lot can change week to week.
He’s certainly been afforded more screen time than other villains this series, so if the show were to pull this twist, it would make sense.
Ms. Marvel has done a great job handling the family drama, tying the personal and political histories of Kamala’s family into her revamped origin story.
Next week we can expect a more conventional superhero showdown, which is likely to set the ground running for Kamala’s next screen appearance: 2023’s The Marvels.
We’ve seen how Kamala’s history has made her a hero: now it’s time for her to officially become one.