For comic book writer G. Willow Wilson, there's no better place for Marvel's new Muslim superhero to live than Jersey City.
Wilson, 31, told The Jersey Journal creators behind the new Ms. Marvel picked New Jersey's second largest city as her home because of its large Indo-Pakistani community. Wilson said Jersey City has "the urban look and feel we wanted" for the new series, which hits newsstands in February.
And don't expect a generic cityscape in the comic's panels, she said.
"Everywhere possible, we'll be using actual street locations in Jersey City," Wilson said in an email. "No cop-out generic cities here!"
Marvel first introduced Ms. Marvel in March 1968 as Carol Danvers, a major in the U.S. Air Force.
The new Ms. Marvel will be Kamala Khan, 16-year-old daughter of Pakistani immigrants whose powers include the ability to change shape.
She'll be Marvel's first Muslim superhero, and the first Muslim superhero to have her own series. DC Comics last year introduced an Islamic Green Lantern, Simon Baz.
Many of Marvel's famed heroes, including Spider-Man and Daredevil, call New York City their home. Wilson said it felt natural to base Khan directly across the Hudson River from Manhattan.
"Jersey City was a really appropriate place for a junior superhero who's figuring out her powers and identity," she said.
A native of Monmouth County, Wilson grew up in Morganville, population 5,040. When she was young, she said, Jersey City was "considered scary and unsafe" for suburban residents of the state.
"These days, there's a new dynamic and a lot is changing," she said. "So it seemed like a great time to shine a spotlight on Jersey City. Every great city needs a hometown superhero."