We break down the characters in the Black Panther teaser

Eric Diaz | Nerdist

The first teaser trailer for Ryan Coogler’s long awaited big screen version of The Black Panther has arrived from Marvel Studios, and although it is fairly brief, it still gave fans a lot to chew on. Although the teaser just gives us quick glimpses, we’re here to tell you who’s who and what’s what in the first teaser for the solo film debut of King T’Challa of Wakanda, played by Chadwick Boseman.

The trailer opens with actor Andy Serkis in an interrogation room with CIA Agent Everett K. Ross (Martin Freeman). Serkis with was last seen in the Marvel Cinematic Universe in Avengers: Age of Ultron as mercenary Ulysses Klaue, who loses his hand to Ultron in the midst of a robot temper tantrum. In the comics, Klaue eventually becomes one of the Black Panther’s main enemies, Klaw. Although it’s doubtful we will see him don his crazy red Jack Kirby-esque costume in the films, you never know.

Watching the interrogation we  also see Okoye, played by The Walking Dead’s very own Michonne, Danai Gurira. In the comics, Okoye is a member of Dora Milaje, an order of bodyguards, but also the wives-in-training for the King of Wakanda. Each member of the Dora Milaje was chosen from a different tribe of the Wakandas, a political tradition to ensure peace among the tribes, as each play a part in palace life and have a chance to become the next queen.

The trailer also gives us our first really good look at Wakanda, which is a technologically advanced nation in the heart of Africa. In the comics, it is well known that Wakanda is unique with it’s futuristic nature, thanks to having the only source of Vibranium. But it seems that in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, the true nature of Wakanda is a well guarded secret from the outside world.

We briefly see T’Challa’s step mother, Queen Ramonda (T’Challa’s real mother died in child birth). Seeing Angela Bassett with full white hair really makes me wish she had been cast as Storm in the original X-Men, as she was meant to be.

In one scene, which we expect to be the official coronation of T’Challa as king, we briefly see Zuri, Forest Whitaker’s character. Zuri is a Wakandian shaman and trusted adviser of the king. In the comics,  Zuri, formerly a close friend to King T’Chaka, is a trusted aid and member of T’Challa’s inner circle.

Another member of the Dora Milaje is Nakia, played by Oscar-winner Lupita Nyong’o. In the original comics, Nakia was infatuated with T’Challa, and performed all kinds of stunts to grab his attention. At one point, she was left for dead by the Panther’s enemy Killmonger, who then used the ancient Altar of Resurrection to restore Nakia’s health, thereby granting her increased strength and flawless accuracy. Killmonger gave Nakia a new name: Malice. It’s unclear how much of this, if any of it, will play into the movie.

Speaking of Erik Killmonger, we see him here as well, played by Michael B. Jordan, who also teamed with Coogler for Creed and Fruitvale Station. At first we see him in his ceremonial mask, which is somewhat similar to looks from various comics over the years.

The Panther’s #1 baddie, Killmonger is a Wakandan exile, and in the teaser we see him being escorted into Black Panther’s throne room under the watch of W’Kabi, a loyal adviser to T’Challa, played by Get Out star Daniel Kaluuya.

Another major Panther nemesis is Man-Ape, whose real name is M’Baku. We see him here played by Winston Duke (Person of Interest). In the comics, he’s the ruler of the mountain tribe, and he often wore a mask and white, fur-covered armor. Unsure if we’ll see that look in the movie, but I wouldn’t bet against it.

And although we only see her for a second, we get to see actress Letitia Wright as T’Challa’s sister Princess Shuri, a character who in the comics gives Tony Stark a run for his money when it comes to technological prowess. It looks like the movie version will be cut from the same cloth.

Ryan Coogler’s Black Panther hits theaters in February of 2018, and the character will be seen again in Avengers Infinity War the very same year.

Are you looking forward to Black Panther as much as we are? Be sure to share your excitement for T’Challa’s first solo film down below in the comments.

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