Spoilers revealed in the first teaser trailer for Marvel’s Black Panther

2017-06-11

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The teaser shows a film promising to mix blockbuster action with political tension and colonialism.

Starting with Martin Freeman and Andy Serkis in conversation, it includes the first shot of Chadwick Boseman in the title role as the would-be ruler of the fictional African nation Wakanda.

The trailer starts in an interrogation in a safehouse in what’s been confirmed to be Korea. Both men should be familiar to you from previous movies. On the right is Ulysses Klaue (Andy Serkis), also known in the comics as simply Klaw, an arms dealer who has dealt in stolen Wakandan uranium and once attempted to assassinate T’Chaka (John Kani). His missing arm is due to an altercation with with Ultron in Age of Ultron.

In the comics, he replaces his arm with a “sound generator.” In this film, his new arm is a “a piece of advanced Wakandan mining equipment.” We never actually see it in the trailer here, but there are hints as to what it might look like.

 On the left is CIA agent Everett K. Ross (Martin Freeman), who popped up in Civil War in command of the Joint Counter Terrorist Centre working “with” the registered Avengers after the Sokovia Accords. We saw him be an extra-legal interrogator in that movie, too.

The shot of Wakanda follows Klaue saying, “What do you know about Wakanda?”

Everett: “It’s a third world country. Textiles, shepherds, cool outfits.”

Klaue: “All a front. Explorers have searched for it, called it El Dorado. They looked for it in South America, but it was in Africa the whole time. I’m the only one who’s seen it and made it out alive.”

Klaue’s line is backed up by the shot of T’Challa (Chadwick Boseman) in this high-tech-meets-longstanding-`ritual type room that opens before him. I’m pretty sure this is him exiting the Royal Talon Fighter, his personal shuttle.

And T’Challa walks down into water.

Where he’s confronted by the representatives of all the tribes and Forest Whitaker’s Zuri, a name given to a Wakandan warrior in the comics but in the movie, he’s more like a spiritual leader and shaman.

We’ve been told this is T’Challa ascending to kingship after the death of his father in Civil War. Wakanda has many clans, and they’re all gathered. Warrior Falls is very important in a comic book plot that this movie definitely seems to be replicating.

This look at the the Royal Talon Fighter is the first real glimpse we get at how advanced Wakanda is.

We see only a tiny bit of this fight scene, but it’s important to know that Wakanda hides its rich stores of vibranium (seen most often in the movies as the metal Cap’s shield is made out of) and the fact that it’s the most technologically advanced society in the world.

In the comics, Wakanda guarded itself with a strict isolationism. The movies are adding a layer of deception on top of that, with Wakanda participating enough to let everyone think it’s a poor country.

With the framing of Klaue’s words, it defintiely seems like we’re supposed to interpret this as Black Panther eliminating an incursion into Wakanda with extreme prejudice.

This scene shows of the bullet-proofness of the suit and the extra strength that the tribal leader of the Panther Clan gets from a connection to the Panther God and the mysterious and vibranium-radiation-emitting Heart-Shaped Herb.

Of course, that’s all in the comics. How much of that particular source of power will make it into the movie is unknown. Before Doctor Strange, I would have thought they’d stick to the sciencey sounding Heart-Shaped Herb properties. But with Earth mysticism established in this universe, it can be a bit of both. Marvel president Kevin Feige says they still won’t be calling this “magic” though.

Watching the interrogation is T’Challa and Okoye (Danai Gurira), a member of the Dora Milaje, a Wakandan order of warrior women who serve as body guards, valets, and wives-in-training of the Wakandan king. Okoye is the leader of the Dora Milaje in the MCU.

Neither of them look particularly happy for Klaue to be spilling the secrets of Wakanda, even though T’Challa did a fair bit of that running around in his suit in Civil War.

More of the Royal Talon Fighter and an advanced city, which is right out of concept art we saw a while back.

“The world is changing,”

 

More Zuri, this time preparing the Heart-Shaped Herb for T’Challa.

Klaue is rescued by this masked character—a bit more on the mask aspect later—and some other mercenary-types. We do know that it was Killmonger in the mask.

HERO. LEGEND. KING. Watch the teaser trailer now

 

 

 

At last year’s San Diego Comic-Con, Lupita Nyong’o described the plot of the movie this way, “Black Panther’s leadership is really threatened by two foes who come together.” Now, we actually see three possible villains in this teaser: Klaue, Erik Killmonger (Michael B. Jordan), and M’Baku/Man-Ape (Winston Duke).

Killmonger’s comic book backstory is tied to Klaue’s. His father was forced to help Klaue and his mercenaries when he came to Wakanda, and the family was exiled as a result.

It’s possible that the brief jungle fight with Black Panther is a flashback to Klaue and his mercenaries getting help, and that Killmonger’s father is among the characters we saw there. That would make the Black Panther in that scene T’Chaka and not T’Challa, who would be too young.

Alternately, the jungle fight is from a later incursion led by Killmonger and fought by T’Challa, and it’s what leads to Killmonger getting brought in to the tribal leaders as a prisoner.

That could be adapted to either Killmonger showing up here to wreak vengeance on Klaue or that the young Killmonger ended up orphaned and and working for Klaue/the exiled family had no other place to turn after.

Right before the wall explodes, if you freeze-frame it, you can see that Nakia (Nyong’o) is also in Korea with T’Challa and Okoye.

This bit has Nakia and Okoye in a casino in what is almost certainly also Korea, based on the costumes.

Based on the design and clientele, this casino also looks to be in Korea.

I’d guess that either they’re hunting down Klaue after he escapes or this is the operation that leads to his capture.

Outside a vibranium mine, a maskless T’Challa greets assembled Dora Milaje and tribal leaders.

This pose could either show he doesn’t have weapons or be invitation for them to come at him.

This looks like Klaue and his mercenaries robbing a museum of Wakandan artifacts, including masks. This event could trigger T’Challa’s involvement in the capture of Klaue in the first place—a luxury casino’s a good place to do underhanded business—and it could be the source of the masks worn by the people who break Klaue out later.

I also wonder if taking these artifacts is at all related to Killmonger’s comic book creation of a synthetic Heart-Shaped Herb to give himself Black Panther-esque powers (the actual herb poisoned him when he tried it).

This whole time, we’re getting a voiceover that says, “The world is changing. Soon there will only be the conquered and the conquerers.”

 

These are more high-tech weapons then we’ve seen before and it kind of resemble’s Klaw’s comic book look:

This could be a preview into the tech he steals for his new arm.

We barely see M’Baku in this trailer, but with Nakia and Shuri in the foreground—in their battle gear—points to him being part of the fight scene we’ve been watching. Which means M’Baku and Killmonger could be working together.

We know from a set picture that this car chase was filmed in Busan, South Korea. That probably makes it part of the sequences we saw earlier—either chasing Klaw down after he escapes—although this is at night and the explosive entry to Klaw’s interrogation is clearly during the day—or after the fight breaks out at the casino. I’m guessing the latter.

The theme of this movie is T’Challa becoming king, not only in assuming the role his father recently held, but fighting off challengers and internal dissension over his actions.

Missing entirely from this trailer? Any hint at other Marvel heroes popping up. Or even Bucky Barnes (Sebastian Stan), who ended up in Wakanda at the end of Civil War. While this movie is clearly set in the world the other movies have created, this trailer seems to indicate that the movie is absolutely centered on T’Challa and Wakanda. That’s as it should be for his solo movie.

Fans dubbed it “awesome” but others bemoaned the lengthy wait until its release – the film is not out until February 2018.


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