Everybody seems to be excited for a Black Panther movie. “He’s like an African Wolverine” or “We need more black super heroes”, are the two main reasons I’ve heard people say that they are excited about it.
Myself, I don’t think he’s the best choice, for a couple of reasons really…
I’m not saying that he’s a bad hero, I just think that his origin sucks. For those of you who don’t know, I’ll give you the TL;DR version: A long time ago, a large lump of vibranium (the stuff that Captain America’s shield is made of) fell from space and landed in Africa. Later, a tribe staked out this are as their own, they called their leader the Black Panther. 10,000 years later, they find the vibranium and start using it to better the country. They sell of a little bit of it at a time so that nobody realizes that their country is full of the stuff, even though the Black Panther is the only person selling it, and the country is full of genetic aberrations thanks to all the radiation from the stuff. T’Challa is the current Black Panther, and he rules the country while doing super hero stuff in his vibranium laced costume, and under his and his father’s rule, Wakanda is now the most technologically advanced country in the world.
Now, here is my problem with that. I would like you to look back through out the history of Africa. Any time anybody finds a rare and valuable resource, what happens?
The fact that he’s quite probably a vicious war lord, he also makes sure that his people look like stereotypes in order to keep pretend that they aren’t the most technologically advanced civilization in the world. I have a comic where a guy in a leopard print loin cloth, walks into the server room from Eagle Eye That doesn’t make sense, and it just looks dumb.
Here is his army, all dressed up like animals and holding spears. You’re telling me that this guy is a good black superhero? This guy is pretty much Joseph Kony with an army of (literal) spear chuckers. And what does he do when someone attacks Wakanda?
People get up in arms when we burn a couple of books or take some embarrassing photos of detainees, this guy is putting heads on pikes around his country. These are not the actions of a hero, nor are they the actions of a sane leader. They may have wanted to make him a strong black character, but they made him the worst stereo type. The Avengers should be working to overthrow the guy and set up a democracy. Black Panther has more in common with Doctor Doom than Captain America.
If you want a black character to do a movie on, please, pick one of the more interesting ones that aren’t a bad stereotype and make a movie about them. There are plenty of them out there…