When you Google the definition of the word “anti-hero”, you’ll see that the word refers to a protagonist who lacks conventional heroic qualities such as idealism, courage, or morality and often possess dark personality traits such as disagreeableness, dishonesty, and aggressiveness. James Bond, Holden Caulfield, Tyler Durden, Dexter Morgan, Walter White, Tony Montana, and Han Solo are just some of the characters that typically come to mind when you think of anti-heroes. In terms of comic books, Deadpool, The Punisher, John Constantine, Red Hood, and Wolverine are only a few of the many anti-heroes found at your local shop. But apparently after Ryan Coogler’s ‘Black Panther’ debuts in 2018, T’Challa will be joining those ranks.
In a recent interview with Entertainment Weekly, Chadwick Boseman briefly spoke about his next adventure as the young warrior king of Wakanda while promoting his new movie, ‘Message From The King’ (where he also happens to play an African king). The star shared that he feels as though the Panther will exhibit some “anti-hero” tendencies when he headlines his own feature film:
“This is an anti-hero, sort of. I feel like although he is a superhero, he is a super anti-hero.”
In the words of Inigo Montoya, “That word. I do not think it means what you think it means.” Based on the general meaning of the word, I don’t see T’Challa possessing any of those qualities. Sure, he’s likely still emotional after the events of ‘Captain America: Civil War’ that saw the death of his father and that may lead to some heightened aggressiveness, but I’d hardly categorize the Wakandan warrior as an anti-hero.
Then again, we don’t know what Michael B. Jordan’s Erick Killmonger or Andy Serkis’ Ulysses Klaue will push our hero to do. The Panther has always been dedicated to his family, his country, and his culture. Since we have no indication what the plot of the film is at this point, who knows what lengths the MCU version of the character will go to in order to keep all three safe? We’ll probably have to wait a little while to get these answers and more, but until then, share your thoughts about Chadwick Boseman’s Black Panther being an anti-hero in the comments below.
‘Black Panther’ starring Chadwick Boseman, Michael B. Jordan, Lupita Nyong’o, and Danai Gurira hits theaters on February 16, 2018.