Ms Marvel Ep. 4: Lots of action in Pakistan

Iman Vellani shines as the protagonist of Ms Marvel once again, while Farhan Akhtar enters the scene

Ms Marvel Ep. 4: Lots of action in Pakistan

Biswadeep Ghosh

Something happens a few minutes before ‘Ms Marvel’’s fourth episode, ‘Seeing Red’ streaming on Disney+, ends. Talking about the occurrence will be a spoiler. But yes, it will certainly disappoint many Indian viewers.

The fourth episode of the MCU miniseries, which has a Muslim superhero for the first time, takes the viewer to Karachi in Pakistan. The protagonist Kamala (Iman Vellani) has travelled from Jersey City in the United States, where she lives, to the crowded city along with her mother Muniba (Zenobia Shroff).

After Kamala and Muniba arrive at their ancestral bungalow, an exchange reveals differing world views. Looking at the house, Muniba says it needs a paint job. Her mother questions the need for using ‘paint all over this charm.’ That is a nice little moment, as is the sequence in which the grandmother (Samina Ahmed) tells the girl that she is a ‘djinn’ rather casually, explaining ‘it is just genetics.’

‘Seeing Red’ shows a bit of local scenery, stopping at Old Town where refugees from India who had come during the partition live. It also markets a cliché along the way with a street-side photographer charging a fat sum for clicking a photo of Kamala. After such sights and sounds, Kamala heads towards the station where she has to confront Kareem (Aramis Knight) whose face is hidden behind a red scarf. The fight that follows will make the viewer smile self-indulgently. Of course, the two escape after guards notice that knives and flying objects are flying around.

Not much later, we see Waheed (Farhan Akhtar), the leader of Red Daggers, for the first time. It is a much-anticipated entry. Waheed explains to Kamala that their dimension is separated from Clandestine's by the Noor veil. He also tells her that the inscription on the bangle she has been wearing reads, “What you seek is seeking you.”

An entertaining chase on the streets of Karachi follows. Kamala, Kareem and Waheed are followed by a bunch of characters (watch the episode to know who they are) who have escaped from the Department of Damage Control prison.

The chase takes us towards the lavishly mounted climax. Before that, sub-continental viewers will not miss the implications of a comment in the episode. Kamala's grandmother tells her that she has a Pakistani passport and Indian roots, and there is a border ‘marked with blood pain...’ with people claiming ‘...their identity based on an idea some old Englishman had when they were fleeing the country.’

‘Ms Marvel’ has shaped up well, but the biggest reason for watching it is the protagonist played by Vellani. She is marvellous.

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