With “Black Panther” finally upon us, “Avengers: Infinity War” in the near future and the Marvel Cinematic Universe an utter mess, it’s hard to figure out where and how certain things fit into the MCU. It’s also important to note how important this movie is story-wise and culturally to the rest of the Marvel Cinematic Universe. With record setting ticket pre orders, it’s hard to deny how important this movie is to people of all backgrounds. However, as with any fan favorite hero brought to life the question remains: How will they fit in with everyone else?
For anyone unfamiliar with the character, the Black Panther, T’Challa, was born into royalty of the small fictional African nation of Wakanda. Wakanda is the most technologically advanced country in the Marvel Universe and the source of their technology stems from Vibranium, a metal that came to Wakanda in a meteor many years ago, allowing the Wakandans to harvest and make tools with it. Fearing what others may do with the precious metal, the Wakandans blocked themselves off from the rest of the world and remained reclusive with most outsiders believing them to be a Third World African country. T’Challa grew up with his younger sister Shuri, an expert in technology who also helps design some of his suits and tools. During the events of “Captain America: Civil War” where T’Challa was introduced into the MCU, their father T’Chaka is killed during a bombing of a U.N. summit. T’Chaka was the King of Wakanda and as King he was also the Black Panther and with T’Chaka dead, T’Challa must now take on the role of the Black Panther and King. The main focus of the movie is the struggle that comes with being King and being in charge of such a precious metal and making sure it doesn’t fall into the wrong hands.
In terms of timeline, Black Panther takes place about a week or so after the events of “Captain America: Civil War.” It was placed here because this would be the time that T’Challa becomes king. An interesting part of the movie is how soon it takes place after “Civil War” meaning that the problems facing the country then are still present. Now with the death of a king and what isn’t exactly a smooth transition to a new one, there is political tension in Wakanda. With “Infinity War” happening right after this movie, it’s not ideal for the strongest country in the world to be in political turmoil.
Story-wise, “Black Panther” and his allies will make for some very interesting and important characters for the MCU. During the events of “Black Panther,” we see how reclusive and secretive Wakanda is, with many spies and agents all over the world. A huge thing to note is how important Wakanda’s Vibranium is to everyone in their universe. Almost everyone is after the miraculous material that formed Captain America’s shield and the Wakandans aren’t too happy about that. The illegal trade of Vibranium can be seen all the way back to “Avengers: Age of Ultron” where Klaw is seen selling some to Ultron (who ends up tearing Klaw’s arm off), making him nearly invincible until the Avengers team up to finally take him down. Black Panther will take more of an active role in stopping things like this and will play more of a major role later in the MCU as more people discover the secrets of Wakanda. Being king, he’s also a world leader and will have more influence than a normal Avenger like Iron Man or Vision. It’s also important to note that Black Panther is unique from everyone else with a civilization to protect. This also makes T’Challa important as he will always have the moral question of the world vs. his country which may be a major plot point for his character later on.
A major piece of the Black Panther’s place in the story of the MCU is Wakanda itself. The normally reclusive, extremely advanced nation began to step into the stoplight of the world during “Civil War” and now with more controversy and troubles surrounding the country, the story will no doubt intensify. How the world community will deal with the discovery of all of the technology in Wakanda is also something to see as they may believe the Wakandans are too powerful and end up going to war with the nation. Especially with the events of “Civil War,” Wakanda’s power will be a controversial subject for the United Nations as it determines how much of a threat they pose to the rest of the world. With all that said and done, I look forward to the future of Wakanda and the Black Panther’s place at the head.
The Wakandan Warrior King will play a major part in the MCU. With “Infinity War” so close (the film comes out in May) and the advanced technology the Wakandans have, it will be time for the country to step into the spotlight and defend the world. The “Infinity War” trailers show the movie taking place somewhat in Wakanda so the next chapter of the life of T’Challa may come sooner than we think. The addition of the Black Panther to the MCU is a great one and one that will hopefully soon pay off.