• AP; The Daily Beast

    Fantastic

    A Marvel Superhero Fights Real Racism

    Anti-Muslim adverts on the sides of buses in San Francisco have been defaced with posters of the Pakistani-American teen superhero.

    Superheroes don’t really exist, right? They’re fantastical pulpy creations that can crush steel with their bare hands, change shape, or fly. They’re a projection of what can but never will be possible.

    Not so with Kamala Khan, a Pakistani-American teen from Jersey City who is acutely aware of the difference between right and wrong. The image of the fourth ‘Ms. Marvel’ superhero, who first appeared as a comic-book character in 2013, has become an unexpected counterweight to anti-Muslim bus ads that appeared in San Francisco in late January.

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  • Isaac Brekken/Getty

    COOL

    Portman Starts STEM Program

    To mentor girls interested in the sciences.

    Want to be the next superhero? Aim for a career in science and technology. Natalie Portman and Marvel Comics have teamed up to start the Ultimate Mentor Adventure, a program for high school girls interested in STEM programs. Portman was moved to participate after acting as an astrophysicist, Jane Foster, in the movie Thor and its sequel. The girls who are selected will be paired with a mentor in the science field and will participate in behind-the-scenes events. Forms and videos can be submitted until October 20. Instructions are available on Disney’s site

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  • X-WOMEN?

    All-Female Superhero Team Debuts

    Marvel’s ‘X-Men’ series will bring Storm, Rogue, other characters together.

    Move over Ninja Turtles, there’s a new mutant squad in town—and it’s full of girl power. For the first time in its 50-year history, the X-Men has an all-female team, called the Fearless Defenders, in the comic book’s latest edition. The comic, which arrived in stores May 29, features a team of heroes including Storm, Rogue, Jubilee, Kitty Pryde, Rachel Grey, and Psylocke. Another all-women team was pitched to Marvel in 2011 but was reportedly rejected. According to CNN, X-Men has always made strides for women, and—despite a few flops, like a female protagonist series—it is making comic-book history.

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