The Women of ‘Black Panther’

Marvel hasn’t been known for incorporating a lot of female superheroes in their movies (until recently.) For a while Black Widow was the only female superhero in the superhero franchise until 2014’s Guardians of the Galaxy introduced assassin sisters Gamora and Nebula into the fold. Since then the female superheroes have appeared at an increasing rate. Avengers: Age of Ultron debuted Scarlet Witch. Doctor Strange had The Ancient One. Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 brought forth a new heroine, Mantis. Thor: Ragnarok unleashed the fiery Valkyrie into the MCU as well as the franchise’s first female villain, Hela. And now Black Panther.

Out of all seventeen previous films there have been only eight female superheroes, and four of them appeared in the last two years! This has been a male-dominated franchise for a long time but that’s slowly being cut into and the arrival of Black Panther helps that immensely as it introduced the most women we’ve seen in a Marvel film to date. Not only were their four major heroines in the film but there were plenty of strong, powerful women surrounding them as well and it was a marvel (see what I did there?) to see. And more importantly, they were black!

We, as black women, rarely see ourselves represented in such an epic fashion onscreen and to see so many of us, at one time, portrayed as strong, beautiful, intelligent, and downright awesome was and still is one of the best experiences of my life. So today I’m going to celebrate the arrival of these powerful women and I hope you enjoy. 🙂

Queen Mother Ramonda

queenmother.jpg

I have never seen a queen as glorious as Queen Mother Ramonda. She was beautiful and possessed an air of grace that instantly made you realize, without a doubt, that she was the most respected person of the royal family. And her wardrobe was stunning. Her crowns gave her a Nefertiti vibe and the dresses she wore seemed like something out of the beautiful world of Naboo in Star Wars. While she never fought in the movie she never had to, for the strength in her presence and her words were, at times, more mighty than wielding a weapon against her enemies.

Nakia

Chadwick Boseman and Lupita Nyong'o in Black Panther (2018)

I was surprised at how much I enjoyed Nakia in the movie. I mean I knew I was going to like her but I didn’t know exactly how much I would end up loving her. Nakia was a perfect addition to the movie because she wasn’t used as only a love interest for King T’Challa. She was a spy, a warrior, a friend, and her role in the story mattered.

Lupita Nyong'o in Black Panther (2018)

I loved that she was never a damsel in distress and that she was never placed in the position where she needed T’Challa to save her or something close to that. She was a gorgeous, independent woman who could take care of herself without the aid of anyone and that was a beautiful thing. She was also benevolent as well.

Her strength and kindness helped make T’Challa a better person and that’s how a romantic relationship should be conveyed in movies. Neither one of them had dominion over the other. They each had a mutual understanding and respect for one another and that’s why they loved each other. Watching Nakia’s story unfold in Black Panther was beautiful to observe and I can’t wait to see her again, whether that’s in Avengers: Infinity War or a future Marvel movie.

Princess Shuri

Letitia Wright in Black Panther (2018)

Black women have been portrayed as strong and beautiful but rarely are we seen in movies as exceptionally smart and that’s what Shuri was. To see all of her new inventions that were so incredibly amazing and complex was not only inspiring but simply awesome! I mean, she could teach Tony Stark a thing or two who’s, supposedly, one of the smartest people in the world. And she provided a lot of the movie’s humor. I really, really like Shuri.

She’s funny, beautiful, intelligent, and she is yet another woman in the movie who isn’t a damsel in distress. Did she hide on the sidelines like a Disney princess? No. She fought alongside her brother and sisters because she’s just that off the chain. As soon as she appeared in the movie I was an immediate fan and I hope she sticks around for at least another five years so she can continue to grace Marvel movies with her awesomeness.

General Okoye

Danai Gurira in Black Panther (2018)

General Okoye is off. The. CHAIN!!! I don’t how many times she made want to squeal with happiness in the movie because she was that ridiculously epic. Her outfit was dazzling. I mean that golden necklace is just beyond beautiful. And she was such an amazing warrior! Wow, her action scenes were, at times, better than Black Panther’s because she has this long spear and she definitely knows how to use it.

She was also such an incredibly strong character. She didn’t let anything come between her and her duty as General of Wakanda. I also loved her unfriendliness. In every scene she graced she oozed power and authority, even over her male counterparts, and you don’t see that many times from women in movies.

I’m so glad she’s going to be in Avengers: Infinity War so I can see more of her. I am such a Okoye fan now. *thumbs up*

The Reason Why These Women Are So Important

Florence Kasumba, Danai Gurira, and Lupita Nyong'o in Black Panther (2018)

Before Black Panther there were heroines in the MCU but they were far and few. To see so many fantastic women in one movie is not only a beautiful thing to see but it’s just as  groundbreaking as Wonder Woman was last year for women in cinema.

Disney is providing women of all colors, shapes, and sizes their do with their franchises’ movies and it really is a dream come true. I mean to have role models ranging from Rey and Okoye to Rose Tico and Shuri is something I didn’t have as a girl growing up but little girls of this generation will be able to see and that is one of the greatest things Disney could’ve ever done for young children.

Hopefully, with the booming success of this movie, that all-female Avengers movie Tessa Thompson (the actress who played Valkyrie in Thor: Ragnarok) was calling for will eventually come into fruition. And maybe, because Disney bought Fox, we’ll finally get a Storm movie which would be ridiculously awesome because she’s, hands down, my favorite female superhero and for her to have her own movie would be amazing. Until then, I can’t wait to see more women kick butt and take charge in Captain Marvel next March and the untitled-Black Widow movie in 2020.

If you still haven’t seen Black Panther please go check it out. It is totally worth the 97% rating that Rotten Tomatoes gave it and it truly is one of the best superhero movies of all time. I thank you for reading and I hope you have a wonderful day. Wakanda Forever!

 

 

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5 thoughts on “The Women of ‘Black Panther’”

  1. Your love for all things marvel really makes me so happy, a fellow superhero fan myself. 😀 Its really refreshing to see someone who puts in so much thought beyond just high pitched fangirling.. you go girl!

    Liked by 1 person

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