Ms. Marvel: Episodes 3 & 4 - 'Destined' & 'Seeing Red' Spoiler Review

The newest episode of Ms. Marvel is the best episode of the series so far, it delivered answers, action and a lot of heart. The third episode titled Destined was fun, but it was the opening scenes that were very enlightening. The opening scene features Kamran's mother named Najma who in 1942 is in a ruined temple somewhere in British controlled India. Najma and some people are looking for an artifact that we find on a blue arm; the object is the bangle that Kamala is currently wearing. The Bangle eventually ends up with Aisha who is an ancestor of Kamala, and not only that but Aisha, Najam and the rest of their crew are from a different universe called the Noor. I feel that my suggestion that Aisha was connected to the bangle in my episode two review was obvious in hindsight. The opening of episode three, and throughout episode four it was obvious that Aisha is a very important character. I assume the blue arm that had the bangle on it I assume is from a Kree, but on the floor of temple we see the symbol for the ten rings. That opening scene was fascinating as there was a lot in there, we also learn that there is another item (another bangle?) they were searching for. Najma, Aisha and their crew are called the Clandestines, and by the end of the episode I have to assume the Clandestines are the villains of the series. They were so nice when they were telling their story to Kamala; it was shocking when they turned out be so evil. 

Episode three also had so much heart to it as we continue to be charmed by Kamala's family who embody so many desirable traits. The wedding was a lot of fun as we see a really fun dance number, and we get what is probably the best fight sequence of the series so far. Though in episode four we got a chase that was a lot of fun, but the fight at the wedding was more thrilling. Episode four shifted the location to Karachi, and we learned more about the bangle and the Clandestines. The Red Daggers are an interesting development but is there only two members of that group or are there more. That was an awfully nice base of operations for just two people to us, and they had a really cool map. The Red Daggers say they are there to protect people from unseen dangers, but it appears that most if not all of their focus is on the Clandestines. The crack from the introduction of the Clandestines and the Noor are more pronounced in the fourth episode. Instead of having Kamala be an Inhuman, Marvel has made her a Djinn which in the MCU means she (or at least an ancestor of Kamala's) is from another dimension. I do not see why Marvel wants to explore this, it seems very convoluted, and I think there must have been a better way to explain her powers and ancestry while sticking to the comic book origins.  


The third episode of Ms. Marvel titled Destined started with a flashback to British controlled India in 1942. We see a group of individuals including Kamran’s mom (huh) digging up ancient artifacts, they find the bangle which was on a severed blue arm. Aisha (Kamala’s great grandmother) removes the bangle from the arm, but another member of the group mentions that they need two of them. The temple they are searching is attacked by British soldiers, Aisha puts on the bangle and says goodbye before she runs off as the temple collapses. Back in the present Kamran’s mother Najma tells Kamala that was the last time they saw Aisha. Najma says they are from another dimension, they were exiled to this dimension and have been searching for Aisha for the last 80 years. Kamran is only 17 years old, Najma only found Kamala because she put on the bangle, and they sensed the presence of Noor (which means light). Najma says the bangle helps Kamala access the Noor in a way the other can’t. The bangle and its visions brought Kamala to Najma; Najma wants Kamala to finish Aisha mission of bringing them home. Kamala asks what Najma, and her group are called, Najma replies that in the Noor dimension they are known as the Clandestines, and they are knows as Djinn as the opening title starts.

Kamala goes to see Bruno to tell him what happened including that she is a Djinn, which is a childhood nightmare monster. Kamala says that the Clandestines need her help and she requires Bruno’s help to help them. The Department of Damage Control arrive at the mosque to question the attendees about the superhuman incident that happened the night before. Nakia tells the agents that they need a warrant to enter the mosque, and she forces them to leave until they get one. Nakia visits Kamala to talk about Nightlight, Nakia says her presence is causing the mosque/community unwanted attention. Bruno who is working at the convenience store gets a visit from Kamala’s dad who looking to buy himself a treat. Bruno asks Kamala’s father Yusuf about the Djinn, who he says are referred to as Genie’s/demons, and that there are a group of them who hide in the shadows searching for a key that will take them home. Yusuf continues saying the lock needed to open will require a primordial power, Yusuf chuckles and leaves. Bruno explains to Kamala that to unlock the door will take the power of the sun, and that it is extremely dangerous to do that. Bruno says that he will help Kamala, but he wants to do proper research first and asks Kamala to be patient and wait.

Kamala is dealing with an injured knee as a result of the escape from the drones, and her mother tends to the wound believing it to be from falling off a bike. Kamala asks her mother about coming to America, her mother says it was hard, but after finding the mosque and having a family it became easier. Kamala messages Kamran saying that she needs more time, and Karan tells her to focus on the wedding. It is now the wedding day for Aamir and Kamala overhears her father talking to Aamir about his choice. Yusuf tells Aamir that faith and love is all that is needed in life to be happy, and that he is brave because he chose family and that the man who chooses family is never alone. Najma has Kamran’s phone, and she sees Kamala’s message getting angry. Najma says she will make Kamala help them, and that she is not going to ask any more. The newly wedded couple is treated to a dance done by their respective families. Kamran enters the wedding looking for Kamala, and he interrupts Bruno and Kamala who are about to dance. Kamran warns Kamala that his mom and her group is after Kamala, and that everybody is in danger if they don’t get everyone out. Kamala pulls the fire alarm causing everyone to leave, but the Clandestines are there after Kamala who is forced to go on the run. The Clandestines trap her in the kitchen, and they begin attacking her revealing that they are skilled fighters who possess super strength.

Najma joins them in the kitchen, she turns out the lights and causing a loud sound to trick Kamala into revealing her location. The Clandestines each have their own weapons, which they use to try and get Kamala, but Bruno arrives and is immediately hurt. Kamran goes to protect Bruno who is now hurt, Kamran fights one of the Clandestines while Kamala leaves with Bruno. Bruno and Kamala are surrounded, and Najma touches the bangle causing a glow that reveals a train coming at them. Damage control arrives and takes down the Clandestines, which allows Kamala to escape. Nakia sees Kamala user her powers, but Bruno tells her to leave, and that Nakia will help him. Kamala arrives home, and her family grill on what took place as someone said they saw her pull the fire alarm. Kamala won’t tell them anything, and she goes up to her room when she gets a video call from Nani saying that Kamala must go to Karachi that Nani saw the train too as the episode ends.    

Episode four titled Seeing Red opens with Kamala and Muneeba on a plane to Karachi, they are sitting apart and arguing over Kamala ruining Aamir’s wedding. Muneeba and Kamala are picked up at the airport by Kamala’s cousins Zainab and Owais. They arrive at Sana’s home (which is huge), Nani shows Kamala some her paintings and a picture of Sana’s mother Aisha. Kamala asks why Nani sent her the bangle, and Nani surprises by saying that she knows Kamala is Djinn. Nani says that the last time the bangle was used it saved her life (the trail of stars that led Sana back to her father). The train from Kamala’s vision at the end of episode three is the same train that Sana left India on, Nani says the bangle is trying to tell Kamala something. Kamala is awoken by her cousins who are going to show Kamala around the town. Kamala wants to explore the train station, so she goes by herself, and at the station she is attacked by a mask wearing and knife throwing man. The masked man says that he sensed the Noor, and he attacks Kamala but once he realizes that she is not a Calndestine he stops. Kamala and the masked man leave when the police arrive, as they’re running, he asks Kamala how she got the bangle form Aisha.  

 The masked man takes Kamala to a restaurant, and in the kitchen of the restaurant the man reveals a secret entrance. The man welcomes Kamala to the lair of the Red Daggers, the masked man removes his mask, and she meets another Dagger named Waleed. Walled says that the Red Daggers function is to protect people from threats unseen. Kamala asks Walled to explain what she is, Waleed shows a map that shows the dimension Aisha and the Clandestines came from. Waleed further explains that if the bangle is used to tear down the veil of Noor between the dimensions their world will unleashed onto ours until nothing if left of our world. Waleed sees the bangle and notices the inscription which he translates saying “what you seek is seeking you”. In the Damage Control prison, the Clandestines are being moved, but they manage to escape, but they leave Kamran to fend for himself since he betrayed them. Kamala goes back to Nani’s house, but her Red Dagger pal (Kareem) messages her to ask if she is free so Nani tells her to go out and be young. 

Kamala goes with Kareem to meet his friends for a bonfire, all they do is eat and sing as Kamala begins to feel more comfortable with Kareem. At Nani’s, Muneeba and her mother talk about Muneeba leaving for America; and Muneeba says she needed to get away from the fantastical theories her mother had that caused the family to be shunned. Kamala goes back to the Red Dagger lair, and Waleed is trying to figure out how the bangle gives Kamala her powers. The lair is attacked by the Clandestines, but Waleed fights them off as they run away. Waleed is forced to split up from Kamala and Kareem, but Waleed is tracked and killed by Najma. Kareem and Kamala are facing off against the Clandestines when Najma hits the bangle with her dagger causing a reaction. The reaction appears to have sent Kamala back in time to the night Sana got lost trying to get on the last train to Karachi as the episode ends.  


The reason I decided to combine the review was because I kept thinking that episode three was the best episode so far, but I wondered if the shift to Karachi might be better. After watching episode four I was kind of disappointed that the episode did not live up to my expectations, but upon further reflection episode four was not bad, but rather average when compared to the first three episodes. Episode was probably the weakest episode of the season (at least so far), but it only seems worse because the first three episodes were great. When Najma and the Clandestines were explaining their history to Kamala, I really enjoyed their camaraderie with another. The sharp turn they took to villainy was not set up very well, especially since they seemed so nice earlier. I am a little unclear as to if the Clandestines have powers, and if they do what they are; but they are obviously a threat to anyone who gets in their way. The show is really enjoyable, but it is a little clumsy how Najma found Kamala in Karachi, and how the Red Daggers can sense the Noor. By creating a whole new origin for Kamala, they have given the series creative freedom, but in this case with freedom comes confusion.

I will the final two episodes a chance to validate the use of the Noor, but as of now it seems like Marvel went out of their way to avoid using the comic book origin of Kamala being an Inhuman. I know I have harped on this subject, but Marvel chose the origin for Kamala and their choice is not working for me. I love so much about this show, it is much more enjoyable than say Obi-Wan Kenobi, but the choice of using the Noor as the source of Kamala's powers is holding it back from being The Boys level of enjoyability. The strength of Ms. Marvel has been the characters in the show, Kamala and her family are great, and they might be the most likable family in the MCU. After we meet Nani and her cousins Zainab and Owais, I am more convinced that this show is creating one of the best families in the MCU. Nani is very much like Muneeba, but where Muneeba appears sad about her past Nani seems to find wonder in it. We finally learned in episode four why Muneeba left home, and why she pushes Kamala to leave the fantastical behind. Muneeba is still holding onto her anger that her mother caused the family grief due to her belief in wild theories. I think Muneeba will have a change of heart when she sees what Kamala can do with the bangle, and even more so when she learns more about her grandmother's background. 

The Clandestines have shown to be quite capable enemies, but only Najma has stood out as truly bad since she appears to be the leader of the group. In episode five with Kamala stuck in the past, I assume she will meet Aisha, and she will learn even more about the bangle and her background from her great grandmother. Nani's story about a trail of stars bringing her back to her father might have something to do with Kamala, if Kamala is actually back in the past, then maybe she can influence events in it. There is also the case of the missing second item that the Clandestines we're also looking for, could it be in the possession of someone else. Kamala is now mired in a situation that will need to get resolved over the next two episodes; Kamala has drawn the interest of three suitors in Bruni, Kamran, and Kareem. Kamala has had an obvious crush on Kamran, but she also showed to possess chemistry with both Bruno and Kareem. Kamran has the baggage that he is the son of Kamala's enemy Najma, Bruno has been more of the loyal sidekick to Kamala rather than a love interest, and Kareem will only be an option if he comes back America. I know the romance parts of Ms. Marvel have been subdued, but I think we will get some resolution before the season is over since we will see Kamala in The Marvels before we get a possible second season. 

Rating these episodes was tough, but I am going to give episode three an 8/10 and episode four a 7/10 as both episodes are entertaining, but episode three is great. There is better action, and more heart in episode three which is why I think it has been the best episode yet. Episode four changed up the show by shifting the setting to Karachi, and the ending teases a time travel (Back to the Future) adventure in episode five. I have my issues with how Marvel has handled Kamala's powers and origin, but the show makes up for it by making the family dynamics and focus on culture work so well. Ms. Marvel continues to explore the ramifications of the Partition, and it does not shy away from blaming the British for this. While the family culture part of the show took a backseat in episode four, but in episode three it was a central theme of the episode. Yusuf talking to Aamir before the wedding was a truly touching moment that makes me like Yusuf even more. Kamala might be rebellious, but her good traits come from her parents both being great role models, and I look forward to Kamala being a Young Avenger (there is no way we're not heading in that direction). The series is in a good place heading into the final two episodes, there are a bunch of loose ends to wrap up, but I have faith that the show will make sure the important things are taken care of. 

Thank you for reading my review and please let me know if you think Ms. Marvel has delivered in the first four episodes.

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