See New Black Panther Revealed In Wakanda Forever Preview

The new Black Panther: Wakanda Forever trailer finally shows us the new female Black Panther.

By Nathan Kamal | Published

Marvel Studios has dropped a new trailer for the upcoming Black Panther: Wakanda Forever, and finally gave audiences a glimpse of the new Black Panther. While the brief appearance near the end of the two-minute video did not directly reveal the identity of the new Black Panther, educated guesses are all pinned on the T’Challa’s (the late Chadwick Boseman) sister, Shuri (Letitia Wright). At the very least, Letitia Wright has mostly been promoted as the new face of the franchise, which makes her the most likely candidate, with Nakia (Lupita Nyong’o) and Dora Milaje leader Okoye (Danai Gurira) also in the running.

new black panther

As with previous clips we have seen so far, the new Black Panther movie opens with what seems to be T’Challa’s funeral, with a group of white-clad mourners walking in a procession while music plays. There is a heartbreaking shot of T’Challa’s empty Black Panther mask, as well as close-ups of the grieving faces of Shuri and the Queen Mother Ramonda (Angela Bassett). The trailer then cuts to a darkened hallway, with a huge mural of Mesoamerican-style art leading to Namor (Tenoch Huerta), the other big new element of the new Black Panther movie. 

In addition to the new Black Panther (whoever it may end up being), Namor is the big story of the film. In contrast to most depictions of Namor (one of Marvel Comic’s oldest characters), this version of the underwater monarch is being shown as heavily influenced by Mesoamerican mythology and imagery. The traditional kingdom of Atlantis is named Talocan in the movie, a reference to a mythical ancient Aztec paradise ruled by their rain deity and still exists in modern beliefs as a kind of afterlife. 

This is made even more explicit in the new Black Panther: Wakanda Forever trailer by Namor not being referred as a king by his people but as a kind of living god. M’Baku (Winston Duke) is seen describing his title as “Kukulkan,” the Mayan name for the Feathered Serpent deity worshipped as Quetzalcoatl by the Aztecs. All of this is very foreboding and definitely building up Namor as a mysterious, unworldly force.

Interestingly, it appears that the “feathered” part of Namor is not metaphorical in the new Black Panther movie. While the character has typically been depicted in Marvel Comics as having small feathered wings on his ankles that allow him to fly, this is the kind of detail that could be assumed not to translate very well to live-action. But on the other hand, it is on theme with the Feathered Serpent thing, so that is good synchronicity for you. 

Black Panther: Wakanda Forever has the weight of enormous expectations on it (as does the actual new Black Panther in the movie, we can assume). The first film was one of the highest-grossing and most critically acclaimed in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, and the tragic loss of the original star has raised many questions about how the series will move forward. At least according to this trailer, it will involve a lot of feathers.