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The reviews are in and Black Panther: Wakanda Forever (BPWF), is a critically acclaimed hit! The film has also expanded charac villains to make their live action debut in the Marvel Cinematic Universe!
What is Black Panther: Wakanda Forever about?
Directed by Ryan Coogle, the film centers largely on Shuri (Letitia Wright) and Queen Ramonda (Angela Bassett) and their inner circle, as they band together to not only mourn the loss of T’Challa (Chadwick Boseman) to a mysterious illness; but defend Wakanda against other world powers determined to take their vibranium. However, an undiscovered underwater nation, also rich in vibranium, has been discovered thanks in part to Wakanda’s revelations to the world and a new vibranium detector unwittingly invented by a young scientist, Riri Williams (Dominique Thornton).
This aquatic nation, led by Namor (Tenoch Huerta), a powerful superhuman capable of fighting by land, air, and sea; is determined to force Wakanda into an alliance with his people, kill Riri, and use vibranium on a deadly first strike against the surface world. Shuri, must face her own grief and building rage, to become the champion and protector her people need in order to survive this new invading threat and save the lives of millions.
What new characters are in Black Panther: Wakanda Forever?
Most of the original Black Panther cast return in BPWF; including Okoye (Danai Guirira), Nakia (Lupita Nyong’o), Winston Duke (M’Baku), Everett K. Ross (Martin Freeman), and even Killmonger (Michael B. Jordan). However, new characters–all people of color–make an impressive mark and are critical characters in the film. Riri Williams a young tech prodigy and genius, creates her own Iron Man armor and becomes “Ironheart,” providing some much needed air support and cavalry in Wakanda’s war against Namor.
We also meet Aneka, played by Michaela Coel, a young member of the Dora Milaje who prefers the new weaponry created by Shuri as opposed to the vibranium spears typically wielded by the warriors. She is also a lesbian, in a relationship with another Dora Milaje, Ayo (Florence Kasumba).
Mabel Cadena brings the superhero, Namora, to life as Namor’s cousin and most loyal general. She serves in stark contrast to Attuma, considering her fight alongside her cousin to be her purpose.
As for villains, we see Attuma, played by Alex Livinalli, makes his live action debut. He too is a powerful warrior who develops and intense rivalry with Okoye. However, unlike his comic book counterpart he is seemingly loyal to Namor and is less powerful. This may change due to Namor’s decision at the end of the film, becoming the catalyst to him becoming one of the underwater king’s most formidable enemies.
We also Valentina Allegra de Fontaine, the Director of The CIA, who is not only determined to get vibranium for the United States, but is collecting and drafting surviving MCU villains into her own unwitting superhero team, the Thunderbolts!
Black Panther’s, T’Challa has a son!
The most promising character to debut to the new film is undoubtedly Toussaint, T’Challa’s secret son with Nakia, whose Wakandan name is also, T’Challa (Divine Love Konadu-Sun). The character is new to the Marvel multiverse, distinct to the MCU alone. It is revealed he knew his father was dying and was prepared for that moment. He is being raised in Haiti away from his ancestral home, but it is strongly implied he will grow up to ascend to the throne and become the new Black Panther.
Although Prince T’Challa is only six at the moment, we could see the character rapidly aged in a future MCU film; namely Avengers: Kang Dynasty. As you may not know, the titular villain of that film will Kang The Conqueror (Jonathan Majors) who has the ability to manipulate time in a variety of ways. The MCU may witness another time skip as we saw with the five years that passed during Avengers: Endgame.
We are happy to see more diversity in the characters coming to the MCU. Disney+ will stream an Ironheart series in late 2023. Okoye is set to appear in a yet untitled Marvel origin story series also streaming there. Both series will be a part of Marvel Phase 5.
We cannot wait to see what new characters come from the upcoming MCU films and series. What heroes and villains are you looking forward to seeing in the MCU? Storm, Blade, Blue Marvel, Red She-Hulk?Comment below!