It wasn’t shocking that Carol Danvers appeared during the end credits of Ms. Marvel‘s season one finale. The galactic superhero is Kamala’s personal hero and the two have partnered in Marvel comics. They’ll also team-up in the MCU’s Captain Marvel sequel, The Marvels. What was surprising, though, was how Carol Danvers ended up in Jersey City.
Kamala’s bangle transported her to an unknown destination while bringing her idol to Kamala’s bedroom. What exactly happened? Where did Ms. Marvel go and why did Carol take her place? Marvel Comics tells us how the two swapped places. But while we’ll have to wait to find out the specifics of what it means in the MCU, what we know about Kamala’s magical artifact and its history points to why the two heroes share an ancient connection. One that spans worlds and maybe even dimensions.
“What You Seek Is Seeking You”
Kamala’s bangle got its powers from her great-grandmother Aisha. Born in the Noor Dimension, the ClanDestine Aisha was only able to access her abilities on Earth during her dying moments. She relied on the love of her family to imbue the bangle with magic, which she did by reciting a famous line of poetry – “What you seek is seeking you.” That quote ended up transcribed on the bangle, as it also explains the item’s purpose.
What Aisha sought was protection for her family, and that’s exactly what the bangle found in Kamala. It transported the teenager across space and time back to the night of Partition. There she saved her grandmother decades before Kamala herself was born.
The bangle takes Kamala Khan where she needs to go, even if Kamala doesn’t know she needs to be there. Wherever that piece of jewlery sent her during Ms. Marvel‘s mid-credits scene it’s clearly a trip Kamala must take. Both because something (or someone) seeks Kamala and Kamala seeks something herself. What does she seek, though? As of now there’s only one thing she wanted but didn’t find during the show’s first season.
The Missing Bangle of the Noor
The ClanDestine didn’t search for a single bangle. The group looked for a matching pair that could open The Veil and return to their home dimension of Noor. They originally located one in 1942 inside the ruins of an ancient temple in India. That underground location also featured the symbol of the Ten Rings, Shang-Chi’s own ancient power-giving jewelry.
That bangle was the only one any of them ever found, but it was nearly enough for the ClanDestine. One bangle was powerful enough, though, to open The Veil and nearly consume Earth’s dimension. The other bangle likely shares the same powers and remains an existential threat to Kamala’s world. Imagine what the two of them together might do.
But how the ClanDestine found the single bangle suggests a major connection already existed between Carol Danvers and Kamala. Aisha pulled the bangle off a blue severed arm. Whomever wore that bangle previously was not of Earth. They very well might have been one of the blue-skinned Kree, though. And if that arm belonged to a member of the Kree—the group that Carol Danvers once served—Kamala, the bangles, and Carol’s stories were already intertwined before that scene.
But that doesn’t explain why the bangle brought Captain Marvel to Kamala’s room when it sent Kamala away in a vortex. Fortunately Marvel Comics just might.
The Kree Nega-Bands of Marvel Comics
The MCU often uses the broad strokes of Marvel Comics as both inspiration and foundation even when making major changes to a character’s story. That’s what Ms. Marvel did throughout its first season, including altering how Kamala got her powers. In the comics she is an Inhuman and Terrigen Mist unlocked her abilities, not jewelry. The show version, though, turned her into a Noor/Earth hybrid who also happens to be a mutant. But those bangles do have a comics equivalent: ancient Kree Nega-Bands. And they’re an important part of the original Captain Marvel’s’ history.
The Nega-Bands transform mental energy into physical energy, similar to what Kamala’s bangle let her do on the show. Kree experiments also led to the creation of Inhumans, which is relevant to Kamala because in the comics, she is a member of the highly evolved superhero race.
Most importantly, though, the Nega-Bands were once worn by superhero sidekick Rick Jones. When he wore them he essentially became the alter-ego of Captain Marvel. The bands allowed Rick to swap places with Mar-Vell. But whoever wasn’t wearing them would be stuck in the Negative Zone, “ an anti-matter continuum that exists alongside the continuum Earth occupies.”
Is that where Carol was before the bangle sent her to Kamala’s room? If so, is Kamala stuck in the Negative Zone right now? (A realm intimately tied to the Fantastic Four, too!) Or was Captain Marvel possibly in the Noor dimension, which like the Negative Zone exists parallel to Earth? (Wherever she was she seemed upset not to be there anymore.) It’s impossible to know because the MCU doesn’t adapt Marvel Comics directly. But where there’s a lot of Nega-Band smoke there might be a bangle fire. At the very least we know that bangle connects the two of them, no matter where they might be in the universe.
Connections Across Space and Time
Was Carol merely on an alien world or even Earth before the swap with Kamala? It’s unclear based on her last hologram appearance in (:insert dramatic music:) Shang-Chi and the Ten Rings. During that film’s own mid-credits scene Captain Marvel learned the rings are sending out a beacon. The Ten Rings are seeking something or someone, just as Kamala’s own magical ancient artifact did on Ms. Marvel. That might mean the apparent connection with Marvel Comics’ Nega-Bands means those bangles are connected the MCU’s version of the Negative Zone and have been the whole time.
There’s obviously much we still don’t know about the MCU’s Kamala, Carol Danvers, bangles, and even the Ten Rings.. But at the the very least we know that bangle connects the two heroes, no matter where they might be in the universe.
And Ms. Marvel made one thing clear about Kamala’s MCU journey. We know Aisha’s magical jewelry would only send Kamala someplace she needs to go. And it would send her there for reasons far more important than making sure Kamala meets her idol.
Though, in fairness, that would be reason enough.
Mikey Walsh is a staff writer at Nerdist. You can follow him on Twitter at @burgermike. And also anywhere someone is ranking the Targaryen kings.