Meowza! 'Black Panther' Has One of the Most Compelling Plots in Marvel Movie History
By the look of the flick's first trailer, Marvel is doing 'Black Panther' serious justice.
Black Panther has arrived, and he is anything but a scaredy cat. As evidenced by the film's first teaser trailer, which amassed a hefty 89 million views in 24 hours, the next stand-alone Marvel flick will offer all the same non-stop action, drama, and badassery as its predecessors, with one major differentiating factor: this plot has real substance.
While previous stand-alone films from the studio have relied heavily on impressive effects, somewhat lacking inter-hero contention, and fleeting romances damned from the start, T'Challa will introduce us to an unexplored world brimming with a brand new, ferocious set of characters, its own unique conflicts, and a message of culture and conservation as yet unrivaled by its sister films.
Here's why Black Panther might just be one of the most compelling Marvel movies yet.
1. The protagonist is (obviously) unlike any we've seen before
T'Challa (played by Chadwick Boseman) is the leader of the mysterious, heavily protected land of Wakanda, the stuff of legends, swaddled with secrets and boasting wealth galore. Like, the sort of opulence that would make Trump's tower look like a gaudy bird house.
T'Challa's primary motivation, it seems, is to ensure that both Wakanda and its people remain isolated, immune from the ruinous influences of the outside world — a far different goal than those of Marvel heroes past, but completely achievable by a character who's been called the smartest hero in the universe. Whether Black Panther/T'Challa or Ironman/Tony Stark would win out in a battle of pure intelligence is a contested matter in the MCU. Still, BP emerges not only as one of the smartest Marvel heroes, but a physically adept all-star. His invulnerable vibranium suit may be what allows him to stave off bullets like water drops caressing the skin, but he really stands out thanks to the rare resources (herbs, etc.) of T'Challa's lush land and his fierce martial arts training.
T'Challa is also the first black Marvel hero to get his own stand-alone movie. Many fans assumed War Machine/James Rhodes (played by Don Cheadle) would be the first to break this lame barrier after multiple appearances in Iron Man, Avengers, and Captain America sequels, but we couldn't be more pleased to see Boseman in the spotlight following his debut in Civil War.
2. Wakanda has its own fascinating tale alone — Black Panther or no Black Panther
After what seems like 30 sequels following the same few heroes, Black Panther will finally introduce us to an unseen part of the MCU: Wakanda.
In the new film, we'll catch up with T'Challa after his father was tragically killed in Captain America: Civil War. The newly anointed king will struggle not only with dangerous nemeses attempting to take control of his country from the inside, but the struggle of his very independent, very enviable land meeting the rest of the world for the first time. Unlike films before it, there are so many facets to this story — we'll follow along as T'Challa develops himself, his relationships, his country, and its relationship with the rest of the world.
3. Black Panther stars three of the most badass black women in film
There's also the sad fact that multiple black women have never had significant roles in a single Marvel film...like, ever.
4. Black Panther carries a strong message
Black Panther will be another movie about stopping a world war in its tracks. Indeed, battles of epic and global proportions are Marvel's thing. The story of Wakanda, however, is inspired by the legendary El Dorado, an elusive land of gold, gems, and cascading waterfalls the Spaniards could never track down. Wakanda has yet to be discovered, dominated, and stolen by outsiders hungry for its offerings. It's going to be one hell of a journey watching T'Challa try to keep it that way.
Watch the trailer below, and look out for it in theaters February 16, 2018.