‘Black Panther’: Marvel Superhero’s Mysterious Background
As the first black superhero in a mainstream comic book, there’s much to learn about Black Panther, who made a brief but spectacular big screen introduction in the recently released “Captain America: Civil War” trailer.
The appearance–a crossover to the Marvel Universe–comes ahead of his full feature debut in February 2018. Chadwick Boseman of “Get on Up” and “42” takes on the role of Black Panther, an African warrior-prince of the fictional nation of Wakanda. In “Civil War” he proves to be both a fierce ally and foe when he’s forced to chose sides between Iron Man and Captain America.
In an interview with Entertainment Weekly, Boseman and other Marvel players spill the details on the relatively unknown hero. Below, we acquaint you with his brief history.
1. Introducing Black Panther
In “Civil War” he’s drawn in to the mayhem of the Marvel Universe and superhero of “exceptional” abilities after the events of “Avengers: Age of Ultron.” Both friendly with Chris Evans‘ Captain America and Robert Downey Jr’s Iron Man, his allegiances are in doubt. “You never quite know where he stands. There’s always a bit of concealing and mystery.”
Black Panther’s Special Super Powers Explained
2. No Black Magic
Black Panther’s exceptional superhero gifts include martial arts-like skills and the ability to fight in the style of other animals like cats, snakes and others. “Obviously, there’s an opportunity to do some capoeira,” Boseman says of the agile Brazilian dance-like fight moves. “I wouldn’t say he’s a ninja, but he does employ some of those aspects as well,” he adds.
3. Pick of the Litter
T’Challa, an African prince, goes by the superhero nom de guerre Black Panther–a title passed down by generations before him. His fictional African nation of Wakanda is the wold’s largest natural supply of vibranium–a precious, indestructible metal in the Marvel Universe. “I think there’s perhaps a bit of a maverick there, and then there’s also a need to live up to traditions and his father’s legacy.”
4. The Claws of Attraction
Aside from his fighting skills, Black Panther is equipped with deadly retractable vibranium claws (think Wolverine-like slash ’em to ribbons force).
Black Panther’s costume is unlike others in the Marvel Universe because it’s completely made of metal–described as “medieval chain metal woven extremely thin,” says director Anthony Russo. “It’s not comparable to any other costumes in the universe.”
‘Black Panther’ Fighting Style and Skills: What Is Vibranium?
The vibranium metal allows it to absorb energy similar to how Captain America’s shield works. Of course, the suit is practical for a superhero in battle–but not so much for an actor trying to perform. “I remember feeling extremely hot and claustrophobic, like, ‘How in the world am I gonna move and act and respond in this?’” says Boseman. “But the shoes feel good. Everything else you get used to.”
Watch Black Panther’s first big screen Marvel appearance in the “Captain America: Civil War” trailer below.