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  • Black Panther: The First Black Superhero

    Black Panther has already made his screen debut with Captain America: Civil War. However, we had to wait much longer for his first solo flick. As the initial release date of November, 2017 was pushed further, we will finally see a Black Panther movie in theaters. I am all geared up for the movie. The superhero looked dapper in his amazing outfit and will likely continue to find appreciation by fans worldwide in this live action flick.

    Here are a few things that you may or may not know about Black Panther. Let me know if I surprised you.

    Black Panther was the first black superhero

    Though issues of representation have been raised in the comic book world as well, Black Panther didn’t disappoint anyone. As far as mainstream Marvel Comics are concerned, Black Panther was the first ever black superhero. He made his first appearance in Fantastic Four #52 and then got his own solo series.

    Black Panther is actually a hereditary title

    Only a person from the royal lineage can become a Black Panther. However, he has to prove his mirth to do so by passing extensive tests. As such, it is a hereditary title that is passed on from one generation to the other. Even after passing the test, you have to eat a mysterious herb. This could be poisonous to other people. Consumption of the herb gives you the powers of the Black Panther.

    The chief role of the Black Panther is to protect the people of Wakanda and also a rare metal found in their nation- Vibranium. Yes, the same metal that Captain America’s shied is made of. It is considered near indestructible.

    Just in case you were wondering, Wakanda isn’t a tribal land as you may guess because of royal lineages etc. It is, in fact, a very technologically advanced nation and is considered at the forefront of politics, technology etc. on Earth.

    Black Panther was heavily politicized

    Black Panther’s comic book appearance as a black superhero coincided sharply with the rise of the Black Panther Party- which was also known for speaking out about police patrols against the African Americans. Hot waters were deemed to follow and in one of the comics’ i.e. Fantastic Four #119, Black Panther ever suggested that he had changed his name. He called himself Black Leopard and said that he did so because of the political connections to his former name. It was thankfully never talked about again.

    His prototype was named Coal Tiger

    If Stan Lee really stayed with Coal Tiger, we would have got a superhero with the most awkward and funny name in the history of comic books. Also, Coal Tiger isn’t a name you should give to the chief of a nation, especially when he is also a superhuman power wielding hero. The initial prototypes of the character even contained a colorful costume with hints of yellow and red, along with a cape that would make any comic book fan cringe today.

    Are you ready for the new Black Panther movie? This is going to be his first ever major appearance on the big screen and I can’t help but wait.

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