It seems everyone who has seen Captain America: Civil War is raving about T’Challa, aka Black Panther. We all cheered when he spoke Xhosa (nkosi Baba). But how much do we actually know about the character?
VariantComics gives us some insight into the history of Black Panther.
T’Challa’s senses and physical attributes have been enhanced to superhuman levels by the heart-shaped herb.
T’Challa is a brilliant tactician, strategist, scientist, tracker and a master of all forms of unarmed combat whose unique hybrid fighting style incorporates acrobatics and aspects of animal mimicry. T’Challa being a royal descendent of a warrior race is more
Formerly Fantastic Four, Secret Avengers, Avengers, Pendragons, Queen’s Vengeance, former Fantastic Force financier
T’Challa is heir to the centuries-old ruling dynasty of the African kingdom Wakanda, and ritual leader of its Panther Clan. His mother died in childbirth, earning him the enduring hatred of his adopted elder brother, Hunter, who also resented T’Challa for supplanting him in the royal household.
Hunter would become the White Wolf, leader of the Hatut Zeraze (Dogs of War), the Wakandan secret police. Their father T’Chaka remarried, but his second wife, Ramonda, seemingly ran away with another man when T’Challa was eight. When T’Challa was a teenager, T’Chaka was murdered by Klaw, a Dutchman seeking to plunder the rare Vibranium metal unique to Wakanda, but T’Challa used Klaw’s own weapon to maim him and drive him off.
T’Challa studied in Europe and America, then underwent ritual trials in Wakanda – including defeating his uncle S’yan, the existing Black Panther – to win the heart-shaped herb, enhancing his abilities and linking him spiritually to the Panther God Bast. Now Wakanda’s ruler as the Black Panther, he disbanded and exiled the Hatut Zeraze and continued transforming his country into a high-tech wonderland. When tribal war broke out, T’Challa restored peace by condemning the Jabari tribe, and by picking Dora Milaje (“Adored Ones”) from rival tribes to serve as his personal guard and ceremonial wives-in-training.
Taught by his father to think two steps ahead of enemies and three steps ahead of friends, T’Challa saw the world’s super-beings as potential threats to Wakanda. Inviting the Fantastic Four to visit him, he forced them into a series of tests, then allied with them against a returning Klaw.