For the most part, response to Black Panther has been pretty positive. Yes, you have dingleberries like Breitbart who desperately need to remind you they exist and are definitely racist. (And even their article was a commendation of the movie, while backhanding Black Lives Matter.) But for the most part, the majority of critics and moviegoes seemed to have had a good time.
But as with all feature films comes the day after, when people who only saw the film once raise questions that they could probably get answered by asking…literally anyone else who saw the movie, too. TheGamer had yet another one of these listicles called “Marvel: 23 Things That Made No Sense About Black Panther”, and, yeah, we’re doing this again. Though much less condescending this time. Obviously, we’ll be discussing the plot, which means major spoilers. But, hopefully, we can get ahead of these misunderstandings before they become sedimentary rock in the conversation. So let’s get started.
23. Erik Killmonger tells Ulysses Klaue to take him to Wakanda following their escape from the CIA, but Erik Killmonger ends up taking Klaue out. How does Erik find Wakanda?
I’ll definitely give them credit for this one, because I hadn’t really thought about it. So I reviewed the scene from definitely legal sources and realized two things. Erik’s shootout with Klaue didn’t occur by accident. And Erik had apparently already knew the way.
It’s also unlikely Klaue mentioned anything regarding how to get into Wakanda off-screen.
Maybe. Maybe not. There’s probably a deleted or unfilmed scene that explains that a little more. But the fact that Killmonger already knew is pretty evident in the fact that he had no intention of taking off with Klaue alive on that flight in the biplane. Erik may have known how to get to Wakanda for quite some time. What he needed was Klaue’s corpse as insurance he would be taken seriously upon entering Wakanda. His father’s ring, his tatoo, they could conceivably be faked. But a dead Klaue would get even the king’s attention. More on that later.
22. Shuri attributes his healing to Vibranium technology. But if this is true, then why wasn’t Rhodes healed in following Captain America: Civil War?
Well…because that movie doesn’t take place in Wakanda. The scene takes place in Germany. And nobody knows about Wakanda being technologically advanced, yet. Why would you take him there? Even T’Challa hadn’t returned to Wakanda yet.
You didn’t think Ross was healed by just shoving a chunk of raw vibranium in his spine, did you?
Vibranium itself is just a metal, and metals don’t heal.
Wakanda is advanced because they understand how vibranium works and how to leverage its properties. They healed Ross because they’re that advanced. Not because vibranium has magic healing properties.
21. Shuri has been working on removing the triggers from Bucky’s brain, but wouldn’t Bucky need to be in the lab for her to work on him?
I bid you to watch that scene again. Bucky says “Thank you.” Implying that he’s cured. Past tense. They wouldn’t have unfroze him if he wasn’t. He kinda needs to be ready by Infinity War, ya know?
20. No greenhouses were shown in the wide shots of the village. Plus, M’Baku is wearing Ape fur to stay warm.
Well, no bathrooms were shown either. I didn’t see one shower. Do these people even have kitchens?
This is not problematic. Plus, vegetarian isn’t exactly the same as vegan. One tribe has blankies that generate energy shields. I’m thinking they could manage synthetic fur.
19. How Erik Killmonger knew the item in the museum was Vibranium, is also a mystery. It almost sounds like Marvel included the heist just to have an action scene in the first act. The whole sequence of events makes little sense once the desires and goals of Erik Killmonger are revealed.
He lived in a house full of Wakandan artifacts (as we saw in the flashback/vision). His father taught him about his history. Erik would be uniquely qualified to identify a Wakandan mask, which would undoubtedly be made of vibranium.
The heist served a purpose. Killmonger says to Klaue that wherever they try to sell the vibranium, Wakandans are sure to show up. This isn’t a throwaway line. Erik want Wakandans to show up for a reason. Which is why it isn’t until after he breaks Kluae from the CIA’s grasp that he puts Klaue down.
18. The film Black Panther depicts Wakanda to be extremely wealthy. How was this wealth gained though?
I don’t think you’re getting it. Their wealth IS vibranium. Everything is made from it, from buildings to tech to clothing. Klaue said they’re living on a mountain of it, and that they’ve barely scratched the surface of it. They don’t need to buy things from other worlds to maintain their wealth. Vibranium, and their implementation of it, is why they can be an isolationist country and thrive.
17. Everett Ross works for the CIA, and a CIA underground holding facility was attacked to break Ulysses Klaue out. Not to mention, large parts of South Korea were destroyed during the previous car chase. To top it all off, Ross suddenly vanishes off the face of the planet.
How come it seems like nobody remembers Ross literally sitting there in the U.N. smiling as he listens to T’Challa’s speech? Ross is fine. He probably set up the meeting.
As an aside, large parts of South Korea were destroyed? I didn’t know the major portions of South Korea consisted of an illegal casino and a couple of cars.
16. According to Erik Killmonger, the plan was to equip all the weak nations of the world with Wakanda weaponry, allowing for a shift in power. But he destroys the most powerful weapon of them all, the Heart Shaped Herb. Logically, this makes little sense because he might have a need for it in the future. Plus, cultivating the Herb and giving it to his new army would only secure Erik Killmonger’s dominion and world takeover.
Um, no. And no.
That is not how Killmonger operates. He intended to be the last king. He intended for Wakanda to burn the world. He had no intention of anyone challenging his authority. Ever.
The only people who partook of the herb were royals. (We can ignore the comic origins that establish that only royals and people who’ve built up a tolerance for the herb can survive it. It’s clearly stated in the film that the herb is for the Black Panther and the Black Panther alone.) Killmonger’s MO was to destabilize governments and throw their politics into chaos. He wasn’t looking for a super soldier army. He was looking to “burn it all.”
15. Erik Killmonger burns his most valuable possession, securing his failure before his reign even began. Upon the destruction of the Heart Shaped Herb, the other tribes should have challenged or possibly revolted. Except for the Jabari Tribe, no others get involved. The other tribes also value the origins of Wakanda but let Erik pretty much do as he pleases, just because he’s king.
Just because he’s king? Yeah, that’s kinda the one rule you follow above all other rules. Political overthrow better have better reasoning than he burnt a bunch of plants we really liked. He already had the power of the Black Panther. The sole reason for the plants continued existence was so someone else could, too. That’s precisely what he couldn’t afford to achieve his ends.
14. The crew disguises themselves as paramedics, allowing for a means of entry and escape. But there are a few things that don’t add up. Wouldn’t two lone paramedics arriving on the scene before police be huge give away?
Of what, exactly? Is there some reason police always arrive before ambulances when ambulances are called? I’ve called 911 more times than I can count for my daughter’s seizure attacks. I’ve never once had the police show up.
By the time they escaped, the museum should have been surrounded by police (including helicopters).
But nobody knew they were being robbed. That was the point!
Let’s also not forget that the girl on the crew leaves (to take a break) at the coffee shop without raising any red flags too.
I’m sorry. But WTF!?[sigh] I said I would be condescending. But you’ve got to understand. Why in God’s name would it be weird for a girl on break…to be on break!?
13. Enter Erik Killmonger as king and suddenly she’s fine with him destroying everything she has fought to protect. Eventually, she comes around. But only because T’Challa appears, meaning Erik Killmonger isn’t the official king.
No. No she isn’t. Her contempt for Killmonger is as plain as the tattoos on her scalp. But her loyalty is to the throne. No matter who sits on it. And this is even a conversation she has with Nykia where she fully explains that. She even protests Erik’s idea in the council chamber and is clearly displeased with the results.
12. The entire car explodes and disintegrates leaving Nakia scooting down the road in the driver’s seat while still holding the wheel to the car. The beat was humorous but highly unrealistic.
As unrealistic as the cybernetic limb that shot the sonic wave that tore the car to pieces which resulted in the woman clinging to the roof of the high speed vehicle flipping into the air and surfing down the road on the inside of a car door was? You know, the vibranium car.
T’Challa sees his father because he was King of Wakanda. He also sees the previous kings that have ruled before him. But Erik Killmonger see’s his own father, who was never a king. This disputes the entire spirit realm possibility, reducing it to mere visions instead. Which would be fine, except the film pays tribute to the spirit realm during the opening sequence by tying it directly into the Heart Shaped Herb. Meaning Erik Killmonger should have come face-to-face with the one who left him behind, not his own dad.
Nobody specified what you’d see except that you’d visit the Ancestral Plain. I’m not sure where you got the idea that you only see kings.
11. Either the CIA is meant to look like a joke, or they really are — which doesn’t make any sense. Waiting for Ulysses Klaue to make a move doesn’t line up with the CIA’s reputation.
Ross says he’s there because they tracked vibranium from the attack on Sokovia to someone there. They’re not there for Klaue. He’s part of a larger sting. Which IS consistent with the CIA’s reputation.
The Sokovia Accords were introduced because the Avengers needed to be held responsible for their actions. King T’Chaka even gave a stirring speech prior to the explosion that took him out. But T’Challa, Okoye, and Nakia violate T’Chaka’s statement in South Korea, especially T’Challa.
Do you really think T’Challa sees himself as a random vigilante? He’s a King acting on behalf of his nation. The Sokovia Accords are about not taking action without government approval. T’Challa is the government.
T’Challa is likely not operating in South Korea with their approval. But governments not asking other governments for permission to do that is not exactly unheard of. While that might violate some kind of international policy, there’s no real reason to think the Sokovia Accords apply just because he’s a guy in a themed suit.
Plus, remember that someone has to make a stink and press charges for these kinds of things to happen. Ross was the guy in charge at the scene of the Korean incident. If he doesn’t convey any issues, then no one will probably care.
Wakanda apparently withheld their wealth from neighboring countries and people, but secretly tried to improve their conditions of life. Meaning they were burning the candle at both ends, and that makes little sense. If Wakanda truly cared about their neighbors, wouldn’t they have dropped the whole secrecy thing long before the film Black Panther?
Yeah, you lost me. They didn’t care about their neighbors. That was kinda the whole theme of the movie.
The film gave an appearance that some tribes were wealthier than others.
Um…I think that’s just you thinking that. The mountain Tribe lived in the mountains…because that’s where they lived.
Having Ramonda not fight takes away from her position as Queen Mother.
Okay, that is definitely just you. Ramonda was awesome in this film. And she did it without throwing a punch. She should get credit for that.
As another aside, nowhere in the film did it say that ever single woman within the country had martial arts skills. Even Shuri didn’t. She fought using her wits.
The club is supposed to be a secret from public eyes, but Klaue rolls up with multiple giant black SUV’s. It’s obvious a fight is about to happen, but T’Challa insists on being patient. He could have avoided the entire car chase if he’d acted like he said he would. Klaue announced his intentions clearly, but nobody except Okoye picked up on it.
I’m narrowing my eyes at you right now.
How, exactly, could he have avoided the car chase? What does it mean to “have acted like he said he would?” I’m sorry, you’ve lost me one this. Okoye didn’t pick up on anything. She got made and acted on it.
There are several problems regarding T’Challa offering Erik Killmonger the option of being healed after his defeat in battle. T’Challa doesn’t ask him if he yields first, per the rules of the challenge. That means if T’Challa saves Erik Killmonger, neither is king until one yields or perishes.
Okay, we are waaaaaaay past challenges here. At this point, this has nothing to do with challenges. It’s all about defeating an enemy to the kingdom.
If he really cared about saving Erik Killmonger, he would have communicated with Shuri immediately after the battle ended.
Well, that would have meant that he wouldn’t see Wakanda, no wouldn’t it? You know, the whole point of dragging him up there to begin with?
There’s also the glaring issue of T’Challa dragging Erik out when surrounded by state-of-the-art transportation. Is it almost like he didn’t want him to survive?
They took a hover platform. That’s clearly shown. You thought they walked the entire length of the tram track and climbed the mountain on foot?
Erik Killmonger awakes from his “vision,” disposes of Zuri, and burns all the Heart Shaped Herb’s. Nakia at the same time is sneaking in to snag a Herb as an offering for M’Baku of the Jabari Tribe. She hears the burning, and can see it, yet only grabs one.
You have Zuri’s death at the wrong point in the movie, but I digress. I really, genuinely hope you never have to deal with trying to save precious items when there’s a fire. But should that tragic event happen, I refuse to give you crap for not grabbing more comic books than you managed to grab.
Using the Heart Shaped Herb as an offering doesn’t make sense either. M’Baku believes in the traditions of Wakanda and apparently doesn’t know about recent events (because nobody catches him up). Once M’Baku knew about Erik’s plan, perhaps he might have accepted it, but not before.
But…but they did tell him about Erik’s plan.
Wakanda has also come under way too much heat in recent events for its Vibranium to remain a secret. How did a third world country acquire such an expensive metal in the first place?
The world think vibranium only ever existed in Wakanda and only in the amounts Klaue stole. Vibranium is not a manufactured metal. It’s expensive because it’s rare, but more importantly, useful.
In 30 years, Klaue kept Wakanda a secret?
Why? Because the crazy criminal who steals from foreign countries is so very credible?
Satellites would have also picked up on the air traffic, pinpointing a location for Wakanda, which would again raise a bunch of red flags.
Oh wow. No. No they wouldn’t have. You get that they’re way more advanced than any of us, right? They have an invisible city, but we’re gonna detect air traffic?
Black Panther enters dramatically by taking out one of Erik Killmonger’s ships full of Vibranium. But where did he get the weapon from?
He was hiding on the ship.
The huge fall T’Challa and Erik took seems questionable too. We can see them surviving it due to the Heart Shaped Herb, but it should have seriously damaged them both.
Two brand new vibranium suits that absorb kinetic energy.
And if it didn’t why did a simple explosion take out T’Chaka back in Captain America: Civil War?
No vibranium suit.
T’Challa understands Erik’s pain but inadvertently allows him to take himself out. It this wasn’t his plan, dragging Erik towards the mountainside view would have been pointless. Too many moments aren’t lining up in this final battle.
I don’t understand this paragraph.
Which means T’Challa had to have known that Wakanda remaining a secret had run its course. Logically, anyway. But he fights it and creates a huge mess in the process. At the end of the film, he tells Nakia his plans to open Wakanda up to the world. She lovingly smiles and agrees, which makes no sense. She should have at least said, “I told you so.”
Maybe you could cut T’Challa some slack being that he had been king for about 24 hours before any messes started. They discussed it exactly once with the council before all hell broke loose.
Everyone assumed the Soul Stone would come into play during Thor: Ragnarok. And when that didn’t happen, the only logical place it could be was in Wakanda. But that didn’t happen either. Is it possible no one knows it’s in Wakanda? That seems shady, however, and a little too convenient.
Or maybe…it’s NOT in Wakanda?
If the Soul Stone is knowingly in Wakanda why not use it to reclaim the throne from Erik Killmonger? Based on the trailers for Avengers: Infinity War, a large battle takes place in Wakanda. And we doubt Thanos would randomly show up there unless it contains the Soul Stone. If anyone knew the Soul Stone was there in Black Panther, their decisions following T’Challa’s defeat in the challenge would have made no sense at all.
It’s really unwise to assume so much based on a popular fan theory that Marvel hasn’t even remotely confirmed. Has no one considered that Thanos attacks Wakanda because Wakanda is the only city on earth that could pose an actual threat?