Michael B. Jordan turned heads with his performance as Erik “Killmonger” Stevens in 2018’s Black Panther, but his tenure as the misguided antagonist was destined to be a short one. At least, that is what the film’s ending led us to believe. Now, amid whispers that the popular actor will be returning to the role comes word from Killmonger himself on whether or not he will be coming back. Basically, he didn’t rule anything out, but he did hint that his fan-favorite villain likely would not be returning in a way most fans will expect.
Speaking with SXM, Michael B. Jordan discussed whether or not a Killmonger return in Black Panther 2 was in the cards for him. Here’s what he said after being asked to rate the likelihood of his Marvel Cinematic Universe return on a scale from one to ten: “I didn’t want to go with zero, you know what I mean? And it’s like, you know, never say never, you know, I can’t predict the future. So I mean, it’s Black Panther 2. The two, I just figured two would be like, two sounds okay, I guess… All I know is that they’re developing a script that, you know, is a reflection of a lot of circumstances and tragedy that we had to deal with this past year.”
As is the case with many high-profile stars, Michael B. Jordan has become a master at giving substantial non-answers. He obviously did not reveal anything big, but he did not completely dismiss the idea. That is actually more telling than some may think. A straight-up “no” definitely has a ring of finality to it, but dodging the question with an indirect answer could point to the actor not wanting to say “no” because it wouldn’t be truthful.
For those of you who don’t remember where Michael B. Jordan’s Killmonger ended up, here’s a quick refresher: After besting T’Challa in single combat and tossing him to his “death,” Killmonger becomes the king of Wakanda. But T’Challa is revived and returns to Wakanda to fight his foe and retake the crown. A vicious fight ensues, but T’Challa manages to stab Killmonger in the chest with one of his knives. Rather than let T’Challa heal him just so he can become a prisoner of Wakanda, Killmonger pulls the blade from his body and dies as the sun rises over his home.
So yeah, by the time the credits started rolling on that first Black Panther solo outing, it seemed that Killmonger was indeed dead. But anyone who has ever read a superhero comic knows that death is rarely permanent in these kinds of stories, so the possibility of him returning should not be dismissed too quickly, if at all.
Regardless of whether or not Michael B. Jordan actually ends up returning in Black Panther 2, the character is already scheduled to appear in Marvel’s animated anthology series What If…? It will be interesting to see what he ends up doing in that show, even if it probably won’t have any real bearing on the main Marvel Cinematic Universe continuity. Honestly, it will just be great to see him back in one of his best, most memorable roles.
Up next for Michael B. Jordan is the Stallone-less Creed III and a Journal for Jordan, the latter of which is slated for release on December 10, 2021. Creed III does not yet have a firm release date, and likely won’t for a while.
Until then, revisit him in Black Panther. He does an incredible job, and if that was his only live-action Killmonger performance, we were lucky to have gotten him at all.