Ms. Marvel's New ClanDestine Origins Might Feature A Sly Nod To Inhumans

Major spoilers for the latest episode of "Ms. Marvel" to follow!

We're now officially closer to the finale of "Ms. Marvel" than the beginning and several positives remain true: Iman Vellani is a revelation in the lead role, the show's handling of Muslim culture and generational trauma stemming from Partition continues to be on-point, and those still hung up over the changes made to the character's comic-specific powers may be missing out on the MCU's best new Avenger-in-waiting since Tom Holland's Spider-Man.

Swapping out Kamala Khan's "embiggening" abilities (essentially shapeshifting, for the laypeople out there) for a more "hard light" power set through her mystical bangles has dominated the conversation thus far, but that's not the only divergence that this live-action adaptation has made from the source material. In the comics, Kamala gains her powers as a result of becoming transformed by exposure to the Terrigen Mist, which in itself was only made possible due to her ancestry as an Inhuman. In "Ms. Marvel," last week's episode seemed to point to a much different origin story for Kamala that involves the obscure group called the ClanDestines.

Marvel Studios' valiant attempts to bring the Inhumans to the MCU, uh, didn't go so well, to put it mildly. But the surprising inclusion of Anson Mount's Black Bolt (whose full name is Blackagar Boltagon and, no, I'm not making that up) during Wanda Maximoff's blood-soaked rampage in one sequence of "Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness" couldn't help but strike longtime fans as a fascinating choice. Could that have possibly teased Kevin Feige's future plans to make up for past mistakes, rather than banish "Inhumans" to the ether as a failed experiment?

One particular scene in episode 4 of "Ms. Marvel," titled "Seeing Red," may provide some answers.

City in the clouds

After last week introduced the concept of the Djinn, this latest episode of "Ms. Marvel" was by far the most lore-intensive one yet — we met the formidable Red Dagger, witnessed the thrilling MCU debut of Farhan Akhtar as Waleed, and received a much more in-depth explanation of what exactly the deal is with those pesky ClanDestines. About midway through the episode, Waleed's exposition dump gives us more information on the home for the Clandestines, located in an alternate dimension and hidden from us by the "Veil of Noor." Once it becomes clear that the Clandestines intend to wipe out our own world in order to make it back to their own, the handy infographic in front of Kamala transforms into an otherworldly image wholly taken over by those prominent spires.

Does that look familiar at all? Quite a few comic fans think so.

The mockup of the Noor dimension does bear a vague resemblance to that of Attilan, the legendary floating city that the Inhumans have traditionally called home in the comics. Given that the MCU has typically only used the source material as a mere guideline than a hard set of rules to follow, it doesn't feel like a tremendous stretch to consider that Feige may fold the ancient race of Inhumans into the MCU as interdimensional beings — and use "Ms. Marvel" specifically to do so. Yes, this wouldn't be wholly consistent with the short-lived "Inhumans" show on ABC, which set Attilan on the Moon ... but sometimes, continuity is simply meant to be broken.

In any case, this could potentially allow Marvel to give Kamala an even more comics-faithful origin, and one that would allow them to have their cake and eat it, too.

Wait, but isn't Kamala a ClanDestine?

I can already hear the one glaring contradiction in this theory. Didn't "Ms. Marvel" just establish Kamala as a ClanDestine? Well, sort of. Warning: this is where we officially enter Speculation City (if we hadn't done so already, of course).

When Kamala meets the mysterious Waleed (RIP, gone too soon ... though something tells me that won't be the last we see of him), the knowledgeable guide helpfully clears the air regarding the murky backstory of the ClanDestines. However, he also drops one intriguing little nugget that could provide the "Ms. Marvel" creative team a potential loophole to wrangle the Inhumans into Kamala's origins. After remarking that the ClanDestines aren't quite the same as the bedtime stories and religious scrawls would have Kamala believe, Waleed goes even further to clarify Kamala's place in all this:

"We believe your genetics could be the answer to why it is that you can shape the Noor here. Your humanity links you to the matter in this world. It makes your abilities unique."

Living between two such disparate (but intrinsically linked) worlds is a neat parallel for the push and pull between her various identities — Ms. Marvel and regular tween Kamala, of course, but also the recurring theme exploring her American upbringing with her Pakistani heritage — and it could also serve as a way to integrate her Inhuman backstory into the MCU. What if ClanDestines and Inhumans are one and the same? Marvel hasn't been afraid to link together seemingly unconnected world-building before, so why not here?

Ultimately, Kamala's origins aren't nearly as important as what she does to live up to the responsibility thrust upon her. But if this is how Marvel reintegrates the Inhumans in the MCU, then that'd be truly cosmic.