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Black Panther: Marvel’s New King, Blackness, and Why Representation Matters

Black Panther: Marvel’s New King, Blackness, and Why Representation Matters

Nate, Annette, and Andrew talk Marvel’s latest blockbuster, and why representation – and good movies – matters.

In this dignified episode of the Popzara Podcast our own editorial prince Nate Evans is joined by future Wakandan royalty Annette Palmer and Andrew Allen to mew, yowl, and chatter about Marvel’s 18th entry in their growing Cinematic Universe (MCU), Black Panther. Writer/director Ryan Coogler’s (Creed) film is breaking both box-office records and preconceptions of what a “superhero” movie has to be – in more ways than one.

Our trio of true believers cover all the bases, including how it skillfully elevates traditional comic book tropes from symbolic to the literal, how even longtime fans and comic newcomers can enjoy the film on its own merits, and even the quintessential “blackness” of both the fictional nation of Wakanda and its heroic king (and why it matters). Like last year’s blockbuster Wonder Woman, Black Panther may not technically be the first such-and-such comic book movie, it’s definitely the first of its kind to actually worth something.

Also, you’ll get a fascinating retrospective on the neglected history of black-led superhero films, a list that includes Wesley Snipes’ Blade films (the first + second, the third not so much), Halle Berry’s Cat Woman, Spawn, and even the Men in Black trilogy. Do you remember early 90s films like The Meteor Man and Blankman? Don’t worry – most don’t either. Get ready to sink your teeth in right now!