Proud2Bme | 5 Diverse Superheroes Who Are Shaking Up the Marvel Universe

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5 Diverse Superheroes Who Are Shaking Up the Marvel Universe

By Palmer Hipp--Marvel recently announced the re-launch of Invincible Iron Man. Yep, Tony Stark is stepping down and taking his place is 15-year-old Riri Williams. Williams, described as a science genius, builds her own Iron Man suit in her college dorm room. Did I mention she’s 15?

The entertainment industry is severely lacking in racial, gender, age and sexuality diversity, and the comic book industry is no exception. Riri Williams is just one superheroine in a sea of white, heterosexual male superheroes.

But in the past two years, Marvel has been trying to reflect America’s true society by diversifying its comic books, something that is long overdue.  

We can thank Sana Amanat, director of content and character development, for Marvel’s new diversity. She’s basically the Shonda Rhimes of comic books. In an interview with Vice, Amanat said that while growing up, she never identified with other characters. “What happens is when you see that, you think that you’re not worthy enough, or you’re not good enough, or you’re not normal, really,” she said. Amanat refused to stay silent, creating new and diverse characters when she began working with Marvel. And boy, are we glad!

Most of the time, Marvel performs gender or ethnicity swaps, which involve replacing an original character with a more diverse character. While any step in representation is a step in the right direction, I can’t wait to see more characters with stories of their own, characters who won’t be compared to their predecessors and will have room to display their identities. Until then, I will admire the work Marvel is doing and hope to one day see these new characters in their own movies!

Here are my picks for the top five most diverse Marvel characters!

1. Ms. Marvel

Ms. Marvel, aka Kamala Khan, a Pakistani-American living in New Jersey. Khan is a character of multiple identities struggling to balance the life of American teenager and the life of her conservative Pakistani Muslim family. Ms. Marvel is a polymorph, which grants her the ability to extend her body to great lengths and alter her size and appearance. She can also rapidly heal from injuries.

2. Spider-Man (Miles Morales)

Miles Morales, a half-African American, half-Latino teenager, took on the role of Spider-Man after the death of Peter Parker. He possess similar abilities to the original Spider-Man: super strength, web-shooting and spider sense. Except now, he has two new powers: the ability to camouflage himself AND an electrical venom strike that paralyzes anyone Spider-Man touches. 

3. Captain America

In 2014, Marvel debuted Samuel Wilson as Captain America. From social worker to Falcon, he became the first African-American to share the Captain America name. His abilities include avian telepathy and incredible fighting powers.

4. Thor

Jane Foster, Thor’s former girlfriend, has picked up the hammer and has become the new Thor. Now that Foster is Goddess of Thunder, she possesses incredible combat skills, swordsmanship and hammer throwing.

5. Captain Marvel

Captain Marvel, aka the amazing Carol Danvers, kicks butt. Danvers goes from working for the C.I.A to becoming an editor of a women’s magazine when her powers surface. She’s got killer fighting moves and her skills range from enhanced strength to the ability to shoot concussive energy bursts from her hands (!!!).

Who else would you add to our list? Tell us in the comments below! 

Header image courtesy of Marvel

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