This post contains potential spoilers for Black Panther: Wakanda Forever
It’s hard to remember the last time a superhero movie garnered as much interest and speculation as Black Panther: Wakanda Forever. Not only was its predecessor a truly transcendent movie, one that became a key cultural artifact, even more so than its fellows in the genre. But also the film has been rocked with production issues, from the surprising death of star Chadwick Boseman to Shuri actor Letitia Wright’s reported anti-vaccination stance.
In fact, so great has the on-set drama been that little is known about the plot of the movie. The trailer indicates that the film will deal with both the fallout of T’Challa’s death (the cause of death still unknown) and an attack on Wakanda from Talocan (taking the place of Atlantis), lead by Namor the Sub-mariner. Various toy leaks have suggested that young genius Riri Williams will suit up as Ironheart and that Shuri will don something like a Black Panther costume (if not the full costume itself).
For that reason, any sort of leak from the movie gains immediate interest, including promo art revealed by twitter user MCU Facility. The first of the images shows the main supporting cast of the previous film. M’Baku and Okoye appear in their familiar garb, as seen not only in the first film but also Avengers: Infinity War. In the center is Shuri, which only supports speculation that she will be the main character in the latest movie. However, the purple outfit she wears, while stylish and useful for active situations, is a far cry from the Black Panther costume.
Of the four, the most notable figure is Nakia, Wakanda’s spymaster. She holds in her hands the ringed weapons she wielded in the climax of Black Panther. But she wears a green costume with a ring design on it (reminiscent of the complex patterns found on the costumes in Eternals). It appears that Nakia will be doing less spying in Wakanda Forever and may find herself called into battle.
That battle look continues in the second image, which focuses on Talocanians Namor, Attuma, and Namora. The trio is donned in Mayan costuming to reflect their origins in Talocan. Traditionally an enemy of Namor in the comics, Attuma wears a wide headpiece that resembles a hammerhead shark, feathers protruding from the top. Opposite him is Namora, Namor’s cousin, with bright red feathers adorning her battle armor and a spear in hand. In the center is Namor himself, this time with an ornate headpiece added to the green shorts and neckwear we’ve seen before.
Unsurprisingly, these images point to an upcoming battle between Talocan and Wakanda. But given the ceremonial nature of the outfits, we may have a better understanding of why the sea-dwellers would attack. In the comics, Namor leads his battle against Wakanda at the urging of Doctor Doom. But given that Doom has not been announced for the movie (at least not yet), Namor may be driven by a religious or cultural imperative.
Later leaks may give us more information, but we’ll likely not know for sure until Black Panther: Wakanda Forever hits theaters on November 11.