For many that are unfamiliar with the Marvel Universe and/or the Black Panther, T’Challa is a character risen out of thin air. Children and some adults watching see him without context. They assume that he’s the first of many, the beginning of a lineage or just a background character for the most popular Marvel adventures turned frontman. But if you know anything about comic books, you know that there are no “background” characters. Every character has a backstory, whether slight or substantial. Such is the case for our next big hero.
For everyone that might be thrown off by the unexpected familial connections in the Black Panther film on Feb. 16, Marvel Entertainment posted video art of the Black Panther’s family tree by Khary Randolph and Erick Arciniega, to their Twitter account, putting things into perspective.
The first member of the royal family line is Bashenga who’s the first channel the power of Bast, the Black Panther God. While there are few members in between the two, the next name of significance is Azzuri the Wise, T’Challa’s grandfather, the Black Panther that fought alongside Captain America during World War II to protect Wakanda’s borders from HYDRA (the Red Skull and Baron Strucker) who sought Vibranium for Nazi war efforts.
Dive into Wakanda’s rich comic book history with the family lineage of its ruler, the Black Panther. Long live the king. 👑 (Art & Colors: @kharyrandolph & @erickarciniega) #BlackPanther pic.twitter.com/9JfCeXw0JK
— Marvel Entertainment (@Marvel) February 9, 2018
Azzuri and his wife Nanali had two sons, T’Shan and T’Chaka, the eldest. T’Chaka took over Wakanda after his father’s death alongside his wife, Queen N’Yami. After T’Chaka’s death, T’Challa, the Black Panther that we can expect to meet in the upcoming film, fills in for his father and assumes the role as Wakanda’s king.
In the video, we meet the royal court and the Dora Milaje, the all-female guards to the king who we can expect to see some of in the film. The two-minute video also explores some family line intricacies such as T’Chaka’s remarriage, the half-siblings of T’Challa, and his adopted brother, Hunter. Perhaps we can expect a cameo from the family, too.
The film will see names like Chadwick Boseman, Lupita Nyong’o, Danai Gurira, and Daniel Kaluuya.
Black Panther’s turnout is legendary, poised to make box office history next week–it’s already Fandango’s best-selling superhero yet. Seems like the sequel is in the bag.