Other than the overdue appearance of Spider-man in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, Black Panther was one of the most anticipated characters of Civil War, by fans and non-fans alike. Chadwick Boseman bared the heavy weight of expectation for his role in the film, and he wore it, well… like a king. And he definitely did not disappoint. In fact, it went down so well that fans were even more excited for the character’s titular film in 2018, and the #BlackPantherSoLit trend on twitter was proof of that. And to show you, I’m going to go through six of my favourite moments featuring Black Panther in Civil War.
6. Moving Pianos
The moment in question is the scene at the UN conference in Vienna where we meet T’Challa for the first time. And not only that, but we got to meet his father, King T’Chaka as well. The thing that struck me the most, was with a few short words, we could see the deep level of respect the two characters had for each other. Not just as King and Prince, or even father and son, but man to man. They acknowledged each other’s way of thinking, even if it was different to their own, and accepted it for what it was.
It may a have been a small moment, but it showed an incredible amount of their relationship, and how good it was. It made the following moments all the more emotional. Some even likened it to the death of Mufasa in The Lion King. It’s a real shame we didn’t get to see more of T’Chaka and T’Challa interacting with each other, but hopefully we’ll get to hear more words of wisdom from the late King in 2018.
5. “The living are not done with you yet.”
After learning the true identity of his father’s murderer, I half expected T’Challa to put an end to Zemo with a quick flick of his wrist, especially after going through all the trouble of pursuing the Winter Soldier, and I was pleasantly surprised that he didn’t. He too was a victim of Zemo’s manipulation, and by making this choice, not only did we get character development, but also a glimpse into the future as the kind of ruler T’Challa would be.
It was a great moment because throughout the film we the audience were given the idea that Black Panther was driven solely for the purpose of avenging his father’s death, but then to have that motivation change as he became more aware of his actions was truly refreshing. And by not letting Zemo cop out and commit suicide we saw an antagonist become a hero. What’s not to love about that?
4. Never cage a Panther
“So you like cats?” “What are you supposed to be? A pigeon?”
Okay, so that’s not how that conversation actually panned out, but that’s how I wished it did. It did, however, give an insight into the dedication and persistence Black Panther demonstrates in his pursuit of Bucky. “…I ask you as both warrior and king, how long do you think you can keep your friend safe from me?” is easily one of his most memorable lines. For me it was less about how long he was willing to chase The Winter Soldier and more about the lengths he’d go to to protect his country from external threats, something which canonically occurs in the comics. It was almost like a verbal warning shot fired directly at Steve, and it was extremely satisfying the hear the lack of response to the question.
3. “Move, or you will be moved.”
I’m just going to say this, I was moved very deeply and my body hadn’t shifted an inch. This was the very brief but unforgettable introduction to King T’Challa’s personal guard: The Dora Milaje. They are essentially a group of highly skilled warrior women who serve as the king’s bodyguards. If that doesn’t impress you, then imagine the President of the United States having an army of Amazonian women as The Secret Service, and then add on the financial and technological resources that can easily outmatch the top global powerhouses (all within the confines of a fictional universe, of course).
Credited only as ‘security chief’, Florence Kasumba hasn’t gone unnoticed. It was six words. Six words that convinced a mostly unknowing audience that she could take on Black Widow, and win. So be moved. Be very moved, indeed. Because the next time we encounter The Dora Milaje, they will most likely be putting powerful words into powerful actions.
Aside from having complete disregard for birds of prey – sorry Clint, he just doesn’t care – Black Panther was quite the opponent in the Bucharest confrontation. He took on three of our heroes at once as well as direct heavy fire from a fighter jet*. Not only that but he was sliding down the side of buildings, landing on his feet without a sound and constantly closing in on Bucky, who was outrunning several cars.
It was on the whole really impressive and a great scene to demonstrate his abilities and the use of his vibranium suit. What I am interested to see in the future is how he handles fighting in small spaces, Daredevil is excellent at this, as all of the action scenes in Civil War mainly occurred in large open areas. It would be fascinating to observe how he adapts to different situations with different motives and consequences behind every decision.
*Sidenote: I recently saw a meme of this moment, captioned with something along the lines of ‘you mistake me for Quicksilver’. It was very funny. But still too soon.
1. “Let them try.”
What a mid-credits scene! Forget what I said earlier, T’Challa’s last line in the film is the most memorable line of his part in the film. I physically felt myself brimming with excitement. And for good reason too. At this point we’ve just received a tantalising mix of backstory and development. We know how good he is at what he does, and we know that he is not one to mess with. He’s a well-rounded and interesting character that came dangerously close to stealing the spotlight from three already well-established characters – including the main protagonist. His enemies are now his allies, and when your allies are The Avengers, that’s bad news for pretty much any bad guy in the galaxy. So yeah, let them try. As entertaining as that would be, I doubt they’d get really far.
What does the future hold for Black Panther and the nation of Wakanda? Only a select few know, but we’ll find out soon enough. Black Panther is set to be released in February 2018, with a host of black talent joining the cast. Until then, there’s always the comics to feast on. Or you could watch Civil War again, like I will. 🙂
What were your favourite Black Panther moments? Did I miss anything out? Let’s discuss! Use the comments section below or give us a shout on Twitter!