The wait for Black Panther: Wakanda Forever is over

Taking a closer look into the story for the upcoming movie and what it means in honor of Chadwick Boseman.

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Photo by Disney

The official cover for the movie, displaying the uphill battle that will prevail.

Dominique Moise, Senior Writer

The wait is over. After four years of waiting and a four-month release delay, Black Panther: Wakanda Forever graced theaters across America on Nov. 11. With the return of fantastic actors like Letitia Wright (Shuri), Lupita Nyong’o (Nakia), Winston Duke (M’Baku), and Danai Gurira (Okoye), Marvel fans across the globe are ecstatic and certain that the sequel would be an incredible film. Plus, with the addition of new characters like Namor (Tenoch Huerta) and Ironheart (Dominique Thorne), Black Panther: Wakanda Forever is sure to surprise and please.

However, it is no secret that the tragic loss of Chadwick Boseman (formerly Black Panther/T’Challa) in 2020 has cast a massive shadow over the upcoming release. The world was shocked, devastated, and crushed by the revelation that his stage IV colon cancer had become fatal. But the show must go on, so Black Panther: Wakanda Forever proceeded without the legendary actor. With a heavy heart, Marvel and director Ryan Coogler chose not to replace Boseman and instead pay homage to the late actor.

Thankfully, the world of Wakanda will return after the developments of recent M.C.U. films like Avengers: Infinity War and Endgame. Wakanda Forever will explore the African nation’s new place in the world. The first Black Panther brought about some major changes for the country from the comics. But thanks to a new threat, a very different Wakanda will certainly greet all audiences when it releases on the big screen.

The main premise of Black Panther: Wakanda Forever will be a battle between the Talokans, an underwater nation led by Namor, and the Wakandans shortly after the death of King T’Challa. This battle is a sharp contrast to the first film’s action. In Black Panther, the plot was centered around a civil war between the Wakandan tribes who supported T’Challa and those who backed the misguided tyrant, Killmonger (Michael B. Jordan). But now, Queen Ramonda (Angela Bassett), Shuri, Nakia, Okoye, M’Baku, and the Dora Milaje (Wakanda’s elite female warrior force) must unite to protect their nation from a colossal threat.

Despite all the excitement, one question remains: who will be the next Black Panther? More than likely, it will be Shuri who will take the mantle. It makes the most sense because not only is she T-Challa’s little sister, but she also created all of Black Panther’s signature suits and technology. However, Marvel could throw a shocking surprise and have Nakia (T’Challa’s former love) or Okoye (the general of the Dora Milaje) take the job.

Regardless, everything about Black Panther: Wakanda Forever from the musical score to the cast looks amazing. While Boseman’s passing, a new Black Panther, and a vastly different storyline may stir up some mixed emotions, it’s clear that Marvel has poured their heart and soul into making this film as beautiful as possible. The first film was so incredible that in most cases, it would be impossible to top it. But in the case of Black Panther: Wakanda Forever, it may just have a chance.