August 8, 2019
5 Female Superheroes Who Need Their Own Movie in MCU Phase 4

Who run the world? For the first time in the Marvel cinematic universe, the answer to that might become girls! Two of the five Marvel movies this 2019 are all about female superheroes.

Captain Marvel flew onto theatre screens worldwide on March 8th, and Dark Phoenix premiered June 7th. Moreover, ScarJo’s Black Widow movie is already confirmed and in pre-production, hitting cinemas on May 1st, 2020.

They’re not alone either! As Marvel shifts into phase 4 and prepares to bid farewell to First Avenger Captain America and snarky Tony Stank (I mean, uh, Iron Man), reinforcements are going to have to step in to carry on saving the world.

Meet the five female super sheroes capable enough to take on the challenge of being one of Earth’s Mightiest Heroes and headline their own Phase 4 live-action MCU movie!

5. Miss America / America Chavez

“Hulkling: Guys, we need a plan.

Miss America: Punch everyone.”

Young Avengers, issue 4

Hailing from another dimension– Planeta Fuertona– America Chavez is an invulnerable Fuertona Starling imbued with powers of flight, super strength, super speed, and the ability to punch open star-shaped portals to other dimensions and realities. Umm, can we get that one more time for the people in the back?

Punch. Open. Portals. To. Other. Realities.

Image Source: America: The Life and Times of America Chavez Vol.1, Art by Joe Quinones, Marvel, 2017

Marvel’s first gay woman of color superhero, America got her own comic series, America, in 2017. In the comics, a series of black holes threatened to swallow up Planeta Fuertona into nothingness. America’s parents sacrificed themselves, saving the dimension, and everyone in it. But, instead of ugly crying about their deaths, America blasted through the multiverse before settling on Earth-616.

Image Source: America: The Life and Times of America Chavez Vol.1, Art by Joe Quinones, Marvel, 2017

Taking on the superhero name Miss America, the headstrong and assertive heavy-hitter has not only joined but even led some super teams. Need names? The Teen Brigade, the Young Avengers, The Ultimates, and also the girl gang– The A-Force.

Often charging in fist-first, America is one of the most physically powerful superheroes in all of the Marvel universes (yes, plural.) She is kicking cosmic ass (interdimensional aliens? #nbd) and busting up bands of baddies.

Even teen Loki in The Young Avengers called this superpowered chica “a nearly indestructible superwoman who can throw tanks at the moon.” Miss America is DYNAMITE. And she’s ready for her live-action close up.

Image Source: America: The Life and Times of America Chavez Vol.1, Art by Joe Quinones, Marvel, 2017

4. She-Hulk

“Are you… are you guys really doing that “destroy the people who don’t understand us because of our powers” bit? Because I mean, historically, that doesn’t end well for anyone.”

Patsy Walker, A.K.A. Hellcat! Vol 1 #5

Jennifer Walters made her comics debut in the 1980s Savage She-Hulk. Since then Jen has appeared only sporadically in Marvel’s comics. That needs to change! Her origin story is BEYOND movie-ready.

An emergency blood transfusion from her cousin Bruce Banner (yup, the big guy himself!) causes his gamma-ray enhanced blood to merge with Jen’s. This gives her the ability to transform into Shulkie, or She-Hulk, a towering, green-skinned powerhouse who has all the same superpowers as Bruce.

Image Source: She-Hulk: Law and Disorder Vol.1, Art by Kevin Wada, Marvel, 2014

But, unlike Bruce, Jen learns to control her transformations while keeping her human personality and thoughts. She also ultimately opts to stay in her She-Hulk state, living with her green skin and Amazonian build.

She-Hulk trained with Guardian of the Galaxy Gamora and survived a stint trapped on a violent planet called Battleworld (Hulk’s gladiatorial games and imprisonment in Thor: Ragnarok ring any bells?). She even came out of a tussle with Thanos and lived to tell the tale.

Not to mention the countless other baddies she brawled while a part of over a dozen superhero teams including the Avengers, the Lady Liberators, and the A-Force. Brawn? Yes. But brain too!

In her day job, Jen’s a dedicated high profile lawyer, fighting for justice in the courtroom with as much vigor as when she’s She-Hulk and taking down villains. Jen models that strength comes in many forms and that her wrestler body isn’t everything.

Image Source: She-Hulk: Superhuman Law Vol.2, Art by Juan Bobillo, Marvel, 2006

3. Spider-Gwen/Ghost Spider

“Even when you’re not wearing a mask, you’re still a superhero. You’re still on the outside. You don’t get to be normal. All you get to be is special. Forever.”

Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse, 2018

Gwen Stacy is back. The Gwen Stacy who, in the 1973 Spider-Man comics, plummeted off a bridge at the hands of the Green Goblin and snapped her neck. But it wasn’t the last we’d see of Gwen in Marvel. In 2015 Gwen slung back into the Marvel comics scene with her own comic, Spider-Gwen: Most Wanted, in a new universe: Earth-65.

Image Source: Spider-Gwen: Most Wanted? Vol.0, Art by Robbi Rodriguez, Marvel, 2015

This time the teen is confident, artsy, and the drummer in a punk-rock band. But most importantly, she’s not Peter’s main squeeze but a Spidey-person in her own right. One armed with Pym tech, a lit costume, and hair #goals.

Bitten by a gmo’ed alien spider (yes rly) Gwen gets her own spidey senses and other rad powers. She then web-slings around NYC super sheroing as Ghost-Spider or, to us fans, Spider-Gwen.

Spider-Gwen’s dramatic, action-packed, and suspenseful exploits are SO movie ready! She has storylines with soooo many possibilities. In one of them, ordinary human Peter Parker (remember, it’s Earth-65) concocts his own superhero serum.

*Spoiler alert* it backfires, and P.P. transforms into a giant lizard. The Lizard. On prom night.

Image Source: Spider-Gwen: Most Wanted? Vol.0, Art by Robbi Rodriguez, Marvel, 2015

Spider-Gwen web slings into action to stop his rampage and protect the people around her, not knowing that her BFF whoopsied himself into a savage, villainous reptile.

Aaand umm, well, he kind of dies in her arms by the end of the night. Yikes. Then, Ghost-Spider is blamed for Peter’s “murder” and becomes a wanted criminal. Worst prom ever.

But what does she do?

She keeps defending her city, she saves her police chief father’s life, and she keeps another dimension in the multiverse from collapsing.

She slayed it next to Miles Morales in the animated Into The Spider-Verse. However, we’ve yet to see a live-action Spider-Gwen in the MCU. Are you there Kevin Feige? It’s me, Vicky.

2. Shuri

“Just because something works doesn’t mean it can’t be improved.”

Black Panther, 2018

No fairy godmothers or talking teapots in this princess’s story. Shuri is Wakanda’s princess, but she’s also a scientific genius, an engineering prodigy, and a future warrior queen.

This girl genius has the smarts and knack for innovation to not only rival bougie billionaire Tony Stark but to SURPASS the hell out of him. As if that weren’t enough, later on in her future, Shuri becomes the first-ever woman Black Panther!

The MCU could use more fiercely independent and clever women tinkering with technology. It could also use more magic, that is, #BlackGirlMagic, and Black Panther’s breakout character Shuri is the answer to both.

Image Source: Black Panther, Marvel Studios, IMDB

The playful and cheeky teen inventor is a master of one-liners and the one behind the majority of Wakanda’s Vibranium weapons and flawless, state of the art technology. (FYI: everything that makes Wakanda, Wakanda!) Vibranium is notoriously tricky to work with, but ambitious Shuri is more than up to the challenge.

Created in 2005, Shuri made her comics debut in the pages of Black Panther #2, a reboot of the original Black Panther solo comic series that ran in the 1970s. As of October 2018, Nnedi Okorafor launched Shuri’s FIRST EVER solo comic. This means there’s more than enough story out there for a Shuri-centric live-action movie or show.

Best of all? Casting is a cinch. In the history-making (and multi Academy Award-winning) Black Panther movie Letitia Wright’s pitch-perfect performance was baller. Charismatic, energetic, and with an infectious smile, Wright’s portrayal of Shuri quickly made the Wakandan princess one of the best characters in Black Panther, and an MCU fan favorite.

What bodes well for a Shuri movie? In a promising interview, Marvel prez Kevin Feige said, “Shuri’s astounding, and you’ll see much more of her in our universe.”

Wakanda Forever!

1. Ms. Marvel / Kamala Khan

“We have to start enforcing justice without unjust force. Help us win the hard way — the right way — not with hate, not with retribution, but with wisdom and hope.”

Kamala Khan (Earth-616)

When Kamala Khan took over the Ms. Marvel mantle, most famously held by blond-haired, blue-eyed half-Kree Carol Danvers in her debut 2012 comic series, it shattered barriers and set tongues wagging. Here she was, Kamala Khan, a brown-skinned Muslim, practicing Pak-American teen becoming the next big-time superhero.

Image Source: Ms Marvel: No Normal, Vol.1, Art by Jorge Molin, Marvel, 2014

After being caught up in a Terrigen mist one night Kamala Khan’s dormant Inhuman and Kree genes activated, turning her into a Polymorph.

A Polywhatnow?

An Inhuman with accelerated healing and the ability to 1. shapeshift, 2. “embiggen” any part of her body, 3. stretch out her limbs and torso, and 4. change her size at will.

Image Source: Ms Marvel: Generation Why, Vol.2, Art by Ian Herring, Marvel, 2015

In honor of her favorite hero and girl-crush Carol Danvers/Captain Marvel, Kamala assumes the name Ms. Marvel for her superhero identity. As Ms. Marvel, she quickly becomes the spirited and dedicated defender of Jersey City. She works closely with the X-Men (she has a selfie with Wolverine to prove it!) and is on a first-name basis with the queen of the Inhumans, Medusa.

She is also frequently found with the 2,000 pounds teleporting bulldog Lockjaw by her side. Ms. Marvel is a remarkable leader, empathetic friend, and hero known for empowering those around her!

She even becomes Carol’s mentee for a period!!! And when she’s not in masked avenger mode? She’s a geeky fanfic writing gamer-girl!

Image Source: Ms Marvel: Generation Why, Vol.2, Art by Ian Herring, Marvel, 2015

Captain Marvel opened the door to bring Kamala’s Ms. Marvel –and her progressive as hell storylines about cultural identity, racism, gender discrimination, and human rights– into the MCU.

Q: Why should Peter Parker/Spider-Man be the only super teen to get the live-action treatment?!

A: No shade, Pete, butttttt he shouldn’t, duh. Ms. Marvel is unstoppable, woke, and the representation we need today!

Conclusion

Ms. Marvel, She-Hulk, Spider-Gwen, Miss America, and Shuri. These five female superheroes are just a few of the many in Marvel capable of holding their own in rounds of fisticuffs with even the most fearsome of foes.

They have the conviction and courage to punch out crime and the words of critical naysayers. They have the money to usher in an era of heroic, courageous, and driven superheroes who are as phenomenal and valuable as their male teammates. In the words of Captain Marvel/Carol Danvers, they’re committed to going higher, further, faster, more!

Victoria Tomis

Contributor

Hiya, my name is Vicky and I’m your friendly neighborhood Marvel-loving, Studio Ghibli-obsessed, Queer Potterhead.

I may be in my mid-twenties but I’ve been an enthusiastic Potterhead for over a decade. I can’t go a day without firing off at least half a dozen Harry Potter references and have a small museum of Potter and Wizarding World merch… one with FAR too many Funkos.

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