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SYFY WIRE Black Panther: Wakanda Forever

Was there CGI? ‘Wakanda Forever’ star Tenoch Huerta finally puts Namor's 'bulge-gate' to rest

The actor deflates the viral craze after a Twitter rumor pumped up MCU fans' expectations.

By Benjamin Bullard
Marvel Studios’ Black Panther: Wakanda Forever

Black Panther: Wakanda Forever baddie Namor (Tenoch Huerta) might spend a whole lot of time near water…but don’t try selling him on the concept of shrinkage — as in the George Costanza, frightened-turtle, Seinfeld kind — to the crotch-crazy internet.

Now that Marvel’s newest superhero spectacle has played in theaters for a couple of weeks, fans are comparing fleeting details from the film whether they’re little or, well, impressively big. Social media, of course, is the place to share such things, and there’s a tweet out there that makes a supposed side-by-side comparison of a scantily-clad Namor both after the alleged CGI de-hancement of a certain central body part — and a noticeably bulgier alleged “before” shot.

With Marvel being owned by Disney and all, the tweet implies the “after” shot of Huerta in costume appears to sizably benefit (or not, depending on your point of view) from the swole-reducing magic of computer animation tech. The post has racked up nearly 130,000 likes, enough to catch the actor’s attention in order to ease the seam-ripping pressure from all the pent-up fan speculation.

Turns out, Huerta’s apparently comfortable enough with his natural endowments to play the whole thing off with an admirable touch of modesty. Speaking recently with Rolling Stone, the actor said the true, CGI- untouched photo is actually the one that’s quite obviously less bulge-y.

“The only thing that I can say is: the original was the photo in the right. Without [the bulge]! That's original,” he said, identifying the deflatingly less eye-grabbing image of the two. “No, I mean, I'm not going to lie to people. Every man in the world, we have fragile masculinity, but not in that issue. I will say, the right one, the real one is the photo on the right.”

In other words, all that Twitter gossip was simply packing a lot less truth about Marvel’s pants-patrol policing than meets the eye. Huerta didn’t posit a theory of his own about where the supposed “before” image must’ve come from, though we certainly wouldn’t put it past an enthusiasm-engorged fan to doctor a shot from the movie just for the sake of getting a rise out of people.

Either way, Huerta and the rest of the Wakanda Forever cast have more serious matters on their minds in one of the most emotionally somber movies the MCU has yet produced. If you’ve not yet seen it, grab your tickets: Black Panther: Wakanda Forever is currently playing — shrinkage notwithstanding — in theaters nationwide.

Looking for more blockbusters in the meantime? Check out Jordan Peele's NOPE, Idris Elba's Beast, Halloween Ends and more streaming on Peacock.