Make way for the king! Breaking down the Black Panther trailer's new reveals

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Oct 16, 2017

We must all bow down before the new trailer for Marvel Studios' Black Panther. While we've only known Chadwick Boseman's T'Challa for one movie (Captain America: Civil War), it was clear that he would be a commanding presence in his own feature film, which hits theaters on Febuary 16. Last we saw, he had returned to his mysterious homeland of Wakanda, offering asylum to Captain America and Bucky and daring Tony Stark to find them. His own movie will find the newly crowned king dealing with unrest in his own country that, if unchecked, could adversely affect the entire world. 

The studio released a pretty explosive trailer back in June, which highlighted a tense interview between Andy Serkis' Ulysses Klaue and Martin Freeman's Everett K. Ross. Today, however, we got a character-filled poster as well as a full-length trailer that really isn't afraid to bare its claws. SYFY WIRE plunged head-first into the enigmas of the technologically advanced African nation of Wakanda with a thorough trailer breakdown. 

But first, take a gander at the poster we just mentioned:

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A quick rundown of the MCU

The trailer opens with a voice-over from Freeman's Ross: "I have seen gods fly ... I've seen aliens drop from the sky, but I have never seen anything like this." It's a little reminder of just how far the MCU has come and just how far it has to go.

Wakanda is protected by some kind of forcefield

As we know from the trailer back in June, Ross is under the false impression that Wakanda is just a third world country of shepards and textiles. Klaue disabuses him of this notion by saying it's "all a front" and this trailer gives us further proof of that with T'challa's ship flying through some sort of invisible force field protecting his homeland. 

Old meets new in the African nation

Even in all of its technological glory, Wakanda is still a mixture of old meets new. You've got this third world-looking market setting with a monorail running in the background. It's a pretty cool shot that epitomizes that this is a land of dichotomies and contrast, which will probably be a core theme to the entire film.

T'Challa is a mama's boy

King T'Chaka was killed, but his wife wasn't and she makes her stunning debut here in the trailer. Queen Ramonda, played by Angela Bassett, can be seen here welcoming her son home and telling him that it's "his time" not only to take his place as king, but as protector of Wakanda as the eponymous Black Panther.

A doubtful ruler?

Taking over as king of an entire country must be hard, right? Will T'Challa be facing doubts and reservations about his new royal post? Here we see his former lover and an operative for the Dora Milage (Wakandan Special Forces made up entirely of women), Nakia (Lupita N'yong'o) that he can decide what kind of ruler he wants to be. Perhaps he is feeling the weight of his father's legacy on his shoulders while the world changes around him. Maybe he needs to be different than T'Chaka in order to keep his nation from tearing itself apart. 

Secret handshakes

It looks like T'Challa's got a secret, Parent Trap-esque handshake with his sister Shuri (Letitia Wright), which most audience goers will be dying to memorize once the movie comes out. This shot also undermines that family is important to our main character, something that could be used against him by the main villain (more on him later).

Suit up

Not surprising that the Black Panther would have multiple suits, but it still feels like a callback to the early days of the MCU with Iron Man. Kinda ironic considering that T'Challa is now in direct defiance of Tony Stark's wishes, harboring the man who killed his parents in cold blood. 

Air Panther

Yet another Iron Man moment with T'Challa just dropping out of an airborne vehicle like it's nothing. He looks to be attacking a convoy of some kind with what look like blue-tinged bombs. Are we worried? Hell no. Cats always land on their feet, remember?

That you, Bagheera?

A black panther rests on a tree branch against a purple and blue night sky as T'Challa looks on in wonder. Could this be a dream/fantasy sequence in which Wakanda's new king realizes his destiny? It could be that Lion King epiphany moment where T'Chaka's spirit speaks to his son about what it means to be Wakanda's protector?

Klaue is working with Killmonger

"I'm gonna burn it all!" The trailer reveals that the movie's main villains will be Ulysses Klaue (Serkis) and Erik Killmonger (Michael B. Jordan), two classic villains from the Black Panther's history. In the comics, Klaue (or "Klaw"), the son of a Nazi scientist, was the one who originally assasinated King T'Chaka while Killmonger wanted to return Wakanda entirely to an ancient way of doing things by ridding it of its white colonial influences. In the trailer, Killmonger says he's been waiting his whole life for "this". Whatever that could be (becoming king? killing T'Challa's family?) is anyone's guess right now. 

Killmonger's got his own suit

The Iron Man comparisons just keep on comin' as it seems Killmonger has got his hands on a Black Panther suit of his own, just like Obadiah Stane and Ivan Vanko. This doesn't bode well for our hero if his greatest nemesis has a weapon to match his own and no conscience to speak of. 

The Dora Milaje are badass

We know the Black Panther is capable of kicking ass, but this is just as much the Dora Milaje's story as it is T'Challa's. As the personal bodyguards of the Panther, they will be his greatest ally against the threat posed by Klaue and Killmonger. Fun fact: The Dora Milaje are comprised of women from every tribe in Wakanda and serve as potential queens for unmarried kings, which means T'Challa may be marrying one of his secret service operatives by movie's end. 

Is that Klaw's sonic emitter?!

Klaue had his arm cut off in Avengers: Age of Ultron and he's still armless in his interview with Ross, but at the end of the trailer he's got two arms again! Not only that, he's hanging on to the inside of a car while shooting some kind of detructive beam of energy at T'Challa's Panther. Obviously, the movie is being consistent with the comics and equipping Klaue's character with the sonic emitter he has on his right wrist.