Abandon Shipping: A lot of people were quick to shipping T'Challa and Erik from the start due to sharing similarities to the dynamic between Charles Xavier and Magneto. Then the movie came out and it turned out the two in this version are actually cousins. This unsurprisingly killed much of the initial interest.
Does Killmonger actually care all that much about oppressed minorities, or is he just using them as an excuse to take revenge on a world he feels has wronged him personally? Support for the latter comes near the end of the film when he admits T'Challa is right that his plans could destroy Wakanda and ruin the world for all peoples, but he doesn't care so long as he can make as many people as possible feel the pain he feels. Despite his entire mission statement being about using Wakandan technology to improve the rest of the world, and T'Challa offering him a chance to repent, he kills himself rather than swallow his pride for the sake of actually helping people. Further, it's pointed out his burning of the source of the Black Panther's powers was a tactic to destabilize Wakanda itself (he reacts quite negatively to the idea of there being any king after his own reign ends), bringing into question if he actually even wanted to create a new world superpower or if he instead wanted to ravage the world and destroy Wakanda. However, if Killmonger really cares more about venting his rage, was he always motivated by selfish revenge or did he start out with genuinely selfless intentions only to lose sight because of his anger?
Is Killmonger is a Death Seeker? Besides refusing medical help after his defeat, he always chooses the self-destructive path. He kills his girlfriend and burns the sacred garden, implying that he isn't interested in having an heir or leaving a legacy for himself even though he's a prince with a legitimate claim to the throne. Furthermore, despite having the skills and connections, Killmonger also chose not to follow a more heroic career like becoming a costumed vigilante, entering politics or starting his own company, thus denying himself the chance to help others and live a life of luxury without the needless deaths. The fact that Killmonger pursues self-defeating atrocities implies that he doesn't care about what happens to himself so long as everyone experiences his suffering. This only makes his evil plan more horrifying in hindsight, since it amounts to a murder-suicide as he intentionally wants millions of innocent lives to die alongside him.
Killmonger killing his girlfriend - was that just an example of how without morals he is? Or was it mutually agreed between them in the event that someone used her as a hostage?
T'Chaka's motivation for abandoning Killmonger in Oakland after killing N'Jobu is subject to this. While he claims it was to uphold the truth about Wakanda, is it possible that it was also so N'Jobu's actions and his response would not be revealed to the other Wakandans? Did he not want to have the boy around and constantly be reminded that he had to kill his brother? Did he consider the boy to be unworthy of living in Wakanda because he had an American mother? Or was it a combination of any of these?
Was W'Kabi's decision to commit a FaceHeel Turn and side with Killmonger motivated by T'Challa's supposed betrayal? Or was W'Kabi fueled by his expressed desire for Wakanda to wage war against other countries, which T'Challa had no interest in pursuing? Or was his motivation somewhere in between? Deleted scenes indicate the former.
The actions that the Border Tribe take at the climax of the movie where they willingly follow W'Kabi's orders to oppose T'Challa even though it violates Wakanda's rituals especially in light of the following movie where they've returned to serving under the Black Panther. Were they a group of black shirts eager for the opportunity to conquer or was it a case of My Master, Right or Wrong where they are loyal to W'Kabi rather than to whoever is king. In the following movie, Okoye notes that the surviving combatants have reintegrated with the rest of the Wakandan forces with the cause of their HeelFace Turn left up to the audience to decipher.
Is the ancestral plane real or is it merely an intense hallucination caused by ingesting the heart-shaped herb? Also, when Erik meets his father again in the spirit realm, is he talking to N'Jobu's actual spirit or is he talking to his consciousness manifested as his father.
Wakanda itself. A paradise just trying to defend itself? Or a group of self-righteous people willing to let the rest of the world suffer? Even ignoring Killmonger's point about Wakandans ignoring when other African tribes were enslaved, and the suffering their tech and resources could have averted, keep in mind that at the time that this film takes place, there had been threealieninvasions ofthe planet.
Americans Hate Tingle: The film is not as well-received in China as other Marvel films, ostensibly due to excessive "political correctness"note "ostensibly" because China has a well-documented, verifiable history of poorly receiving, deriding, or otherwise curbing black-lead entertainment, with one reviewer going so far as to say, "all the major characters are black...the blackness...made me drowsy" and its box office run in China was so disappointing that it actually made less money than Justice League in that region.note To put this in perspective, domestically, Black Panther made more money in its first four days than Justice League made in its entire run.
Angst? What Angst?: For all the emotional and physical trauma he endured including becoming disillusioned with his father and getting beaten into a coma, T'Challa still comes off very dignified and composed in the end.
Following in the footsteps of the Vulture, the Grandmaster, and Hela, Killmonger was chosen as a deliberate attempt to create a sympathetic and memorable MCU bad guy after a string of widely-criticized and forgettable Generic Doomsday Villains. Given the amount of "Killmonger WasRight" memes currently circulating around the web, it's probably safe to say they succeeded and then some. Much the same goes for Klaue who became a fan-favorite as a Laughably Evil companion of Killmonger.
The filmmakers have gone out of their way to avoid the continuity problems that have plagued the MCU. While the Marvel movies are widely praised, they have been criticized for Continuity Lockout and focusing more on setting up sequels. Black Panther functions as a self-contained story with almost no references to the previous film or characters outside of the news broadcast and Ross briefly recapping T'Challa's arc in Captain America: Civil War and the post-credits scene involving Bucky in Wakanda, thereby making it more accessible for casual fans.
Previous Marvel movies, especially in Phase 2, have been widely criticized for having forgettable and unmemorable original scores. The fact that this film has its own Awesome Music page, and an Oscar win for the score, shows you the extent to which they fixed that.
Black Panther won several Oscars (for Costume Design, Production Design, and Original Score) but Michael B. Jordan did not receive a nomination for Best Supporting Actor and the film itself failed to receive a nomination for Best Adapted Screenplay despite both being nominated for their respective categories in other award ceremonies. The film also lost Best Picture to Green Book, which only added to the various controversies surrounding that film.
The movie lost all three categories it was nominated in at the Golden Globes; Best Picture - Drama, in particular, was instead awarded to Bohemian Rhapsody, a feature film which has garnered greater controversy and less acclaim.
Discredited Meme: The cast and crew is sick of requests to perform the Wakandan salute to the point of expressing annoyance and deflation. Michael B. Jordan, a normally nice guy, became visibly frustrated when he refused to do it during an interview. Likewise, Chadwick Boseman became unhappy performing the salute in public and during promotional events.
Thanks to his sympathetic backstory as well as the fact he makes a few good points about social and political issues, Killmonger has a few zealous fans who tend to completely overlook the fact that he's still a remorseless killer who has no qualms about innocent people (even children) dying for the sake of his goals. Sterling K. Brown even spoke out about it, pointing out that while his intentions were noble, he committed several unambiguously evil acts including murdering his girlfriend, killing Zuri, and destroying the heart-shaped herb so he could keep the Black Panther powers for himself. Hell, his very first scene in the movie has him mocking a totally innocent tour guide for drinking poisoned coffee, just because her understanding of African history is based on Western academic beliefs (even though she's likely just repeating what she's been taught, and is actually being quite nice to him.)
N'Jobu gets this too for having similar social and political beliefs, not being willing to go the the extreme of committing genocide like Killmonger is, and for his tragic ending of being killed by his own brother and abandoned by his home country. This ignores the fact that, while he might not have condoned mass genocide, his plan to arm minorities shows he was still willing to let people be killed for his cause and he had no concerns about numerous Wakandans being murdered as part of his and Klaue's plan to obtain Vibranium.
Ensemble Dark Horse: The supporting casts received as much love, if not more than the main character himself:
Shuri, the Gadgeteer Genius for providing some of the most genuine laughs in the movie. She's gotten a good bit of support for becoming the new Iron Man if Robert Downey Jr. leaves the franchise.
Much digital ink has been spilt about the significance of T'Challa's ring, given how he inherited it from his father and how it reacted oddly to Bucky's arm◊ during one of their fights in Civil War. The Russos have hinted that it may have magical powers.. Many in the fandom believed it to be the Soul Stone, due to it being, at the time, the only one of the Infinity Stones still unaccounted for. Ultimately jossed; not only does the Soul Stone not appear or get mentioned during the events of the movie, Avengers: Infinity War reveals it was hidden on the alien planet of Vormir all along.
Fans have speculated that W'kabi is really a traumatized Chris who fled back to the motherland. Also that said trauma led to his FaceHeel Turn by relating with Killmonger's problems.
Many critics have come to praise Erik as one of the best aspects to the movie, owing to his considerable amount of complexity, especially compared to the MCU's longstanding problem regarding developing villains, his relationship with T'Challa and the performance given by Michael B. Jordan.
Klaue is a fan favorite for almost the exact opposite reasons, thanks to being both totally hilarious and genuinely badass, not to mention Andy Serkis' gloriously ridiculous, swaggering performance.
Fandom-Enraging Misconception: Claiming that the film is racist against white people because it celebrates black culture. This accusation is especially baffling given how Killmonger, the Big Bad, is a genocidal black supremacist who is condemned by T'Challa for trying to massacre and subjugate white people using Wakandan technology.
With Spider-Man: Homecoming. Fans were already irritated that Black Panther got pushed back for another Spider-Man reboot especially since both Black Panther and Spider-Man proved to be the breakout stars of Captain America: Civil War. However, the rivalry has mostly died down since Black Panther not only made more money but was also released in the historically significant Black History Month, thus many Black Panther fans felt the delay was worth it.
Some Creed fans aren't happy that Ryan Coogler won't be able to direct the sequel due to being hired for this film, though he's said he definitely wants to do more at some point.
On Tumblr and Twitter, fans of Black Panther and Wonder Woman (2017) have butted heads over which films are truly representative of marginalized groups with some going so far as to claim Black Panther's female bodyguards are better female representatives than Wonder Woman before Black Pantherwas even released.
A similar rivalry exists between fans of Black Panther and Cyborg. The main point of contention is the massive amount of buzz the Black Panther movie generated in the African American community and on social media, while Cyborg's film debut in Justice League several months prior was met with far less fanfare. Some Cyborg fans have taken to claiming the lack of support for Cyborg is unfair, while many Black Panther fans have pointed out that the lack of a standalone Cyborg movie is likely to blame.
Mildly with A Wrinkle in Time (2018) - both big budget blockbusters directed by and starring people of color as the leads. It's accepted that when Black Panther proved to be a smash hit, it negatively affected A Wrinkle in Time's Box Office take.
A surprising one with The Last Jedi. Many of The Last Jedi's detractors praising this film, along with Wonder Woman to either highlight what they hated about The Last Jedi and to deflect accusations of being racist bigots. Not helping matters is that the two films are remarkably similar in theme and characters with Killmonger drawing comparisons to Kylo Ren for being a power-hungry Psychopathic Manchild and anti-traditionalist.
Faux Symbolism: The poster of T'Challa sitting on his throne has been compared to a famous photograph of Black Panthers co-founder Huey P. Newton, even though the only similarities are that they both feature a black man sitting in a chair looking at the camera.note Their posture is completely different, the angle the photo is being taken at is different, and even the chairs are only similar in that they have a large rounded back, but that's hardly unusual. It's kicked up quite a lot of backlash, on both sides, for something that was clearly unintentional. Amusingly, the same portrait actually appears in Killmonger's old Oakland apartment.
Fight Scene Failure: A common complaint of the final battle is that it suffers from some terrible fight scenes that include include fake-looking CGI models of suited-up Killmonger and T'Challa, and a scene in which Killmonger slits the throat of a Dora Millaje in a way that doesn't spill any blood at all. What makes the final battle rather jarring is that the previous waterfall duels and the Busan casino fight are realistic and well-made, and director Ryan Coogler has proven that he can direct good action scenes as seen with Creed.
While some people have tried to turn it into the usual rivalry, fans excited for this film are also excited for and have gotten along well with fans of Aquaman as both are the first films in the MCU and DCEU with non-white leads and directors, giving the superhero genre some much needed diversity. Similarly, in-spite of the 'Down with Disney' campaign, a separate group of DC fans took part in one of several charity campaigns to raise money to send impoverished kids to see the movie in theatres.
Germans Love David Hasselhoff: Wales loves the film because the first end-credit sequence implies that Wales is an independent and powerful country with their own flag and membership in the UN.
As painful as it was to see Killmonger destroy the garden of the Heart-Shaped Herbs, making T'Challa the last mystically-empowered Black Panther, it only got worse in Infinity War when T'Challa is erased by the snap with No Body Left Behind, making it impossible to restore the herb and ending the legacy of the Black Panther is finished.
The level of hype raised the film to unreasonable expectations for some. The fact it's overshadowing previous superheroes with black leads, and especially the toxic parts of the fanbase who overreact to negative reviews have soured many people's perceptions.
Likewise, while most people think the movie is at the very least a good movie on its own, there's a wide gap between those who think it deserved to be nominated for Best Picture at the Academy Awards and those who think it didn't and caused much more deserving films to be snubbed and that the decision was mainly motivated by the cultural-political phenomenon the movie's release generated and Disney's heavy lobbying rather than the film's own merits.
Iron Woobie: T'Challa. The whole movie is nothing but one Trauma Conga Line for him. At the start of the film, he is still reeling from the assassination of his father T'Chaka. Then his admiration for his family is shaken, when he learned that his father killed his uncle N'Jobu and abandoned his cousin Erik in the slums of Oakland, who grows up into the villainous Killmonger. During the duel with Killmonger, he is forced to watch his honorary uncle Zuri get killed by Killmonger before getting brutally beaten and thrown off a waterfall. Although he manages to reclaim the throne and save Wakanda, he has to watch Killmonger kill himself, thereby losing another family member. Yet in spite of all the trauma he suffered, T'Challa refuses to lose hope and is never overwhelmed by despair.
Jerkass Woobie: Killmonger, who was orphaned by T'Chaka's own actions and forced to live on the streets of America as a poor black orphan, and was the brunt of racism and colonialism for much of his life. Is it any wonder he wants the life that was denied him, and stop it from happening to anyone else?
Ulysses Klaue, whose endlessly animated, laugh-a-minute performance by Andy Serkis provides some of the funniest parts of the first half of the film.
Erik Killmonger, who, despite being a ruthless mass murderer who will do anything to complete his goals, is well-liked for being a villain with both a considerable coolness-factor and a complex backstory that helps make him more sympathetic.
#LetAyoHaveAGirlfriend, in response to Marvel denying that Ayo was in a romantic relationship with one of her fellow Dora Milaje, despite being in one in the comics.
Erik Killmonger's hair and mask. Some even call them the best character in the teaser trailer.
Lion King comparisons have picked up a lot of traction due to this shot from the trailer, coupled with the tagline "Long live the king".
Two TolkienWhite guysexplanation Andy Serkis and Martin Freeman are the two most prominent Caucasian actors in the movie and they previously acted as Gollum and Bilbo Baggins in The Hobbit trilogy.
T'Challa and Shuri's Secret Handshake, with some declaring it an official replacement for dapping.
#WakandaGate explanation Comedian Sara Benincasa offered a $300 bounty to any journalist who would ask Donald Trump about America's relations with Wakanda and get his answer on live video. The hashtag was coined, then people started expanding on it (like proposing a question about the country's granting asylum to fugitive James Buchanan Barnes or the vibranium trade).
When a character bio for M'Baku mentioned that he disliked Vibranium for being "mainstream", jokes about him and his tribe being hipsters quickly started popping up.
"Wakanda is Real", a meme celebrating the titular nation's symbolism of African pride and Afrocentric utopianism, or at least its rejection of colonialism.
Ben Shapiro's criticism of the "Wakanda Is Real" meme led to a subsequent backlash meme, "Wakanda Isn't Real".
Is this your king? explanation During the duel on waterfall, Killmonger mocks the Wakandans while beating T'Challa senselessly. This of course had led to condescending captions like "Is this your GPA?"
De prinss will now heff de strenf a de bleck penta sdripped eweh. explanation The very heavy Wakandan accent used by Forest Whitaker as Zuri has not gone unmocked by the fandom, with the line that prefaces the ritual combat scenes standing out in particular.
DELETE THAT FOOTAGE◊explanation From the scene where Shuri tricks T'challa into being knocked to the floor by one of her inventions while she records it on video.
Chadwick Boseman and Michael B. Jordan are really fed up with people asking them to say/telling them "Wakanda Forever" with the arms-over-chest salute. Pictures of the very-annoyed-looking actors are usually captioned with "Wakanda Occasionally" or "Wakanda Whatever."
Comparing W'Kabi to Chris from Get Out, as they are played by the same actor, and claiming that W'Kabi is actually a disguised Chris, hiding from the authorities after he was responsible for multiple murders (Even though his victims tried to kill him first). Even better, some people didn't know the character's name from this movie, and simply called him the "Get Out guy".
Mocking the completely innocent tour guide at the museum, whose only crime was telling him what she knew based on Western academic understanding of African history, as she succumbs to the poison he had put in her coffee, just so he and Klaue can have a distraction to steal a valuable Wakandan artifact.
The moment he comes back from his vision quest and orders his advisors to burn all the Heart-Shaped Herbs for no reason, showing how little he respects Wakandan culture despite his claims of championing it.
When he kills Zuri, who wasn't responsible for his father's death and tries to kill a defeated T'Challa by throwing him off the waterfall even though Zuri offered to die in T'Challa's place.
Killmonger's Gangbanger vibe seems rather goofy and jarring when juxtaposed against the Afrofuristic style of Wakanda. Yet his gangster style makes him all the more memorable, and further highlights how out of touch he is with his Wakandan heritage. Also, it's a completely justified contrast, as he grew up in that culture, not Wakanda.
The Jabari tribe's habit of barking like apes at people runs right up to the boundary between narm and charm. Their sheer awesomeness puts them over.
Shuri's "WHAT ARE THOOOOSE?!" line has made plenty of eyes roll due to its sheer We're Still Relevant, Dammit! tone. But not only is it simply funny, but it's also perfectly in character for the irreverent and youthful Shuri to say to tease her older brother. Besides: It's far less obnoxious than the meme it's spawned from thanks to Shuri's voice not being nearly as obnoxious.
Nausea Fuel: Killmonger's scarification is definitely unnerving to people with trypophobia (fear of holes, usually set off by things that look like bug nests).
Never Live It Down: No matter what she does throughout the rest of the MCU, it appears Shuri will always be the girl who made an outdated meme reference to T'Challa. Letitia Wright has even joked that she now has to be careful about what shoes she wears.
Nightmare Fuel: Killmonger ordering all the Heart-Shaped herbs in the sacred chamber be burned. He just stands in the room while everything around him burns, giving the audience a second-hand look at how his reign as king will not be a kind one. Also doubles as a Tear Jerker.
Rooting for the Empire: Some fans, critics, and commentators find themselves siding with and cheering on Killmonger, going so far as to call him the "real hero". This stems from Michael B. Jordan's performance as the character, Killmonger's manly badassery, his experience with American racism, or his legitimate arguments of Wakanda's complicity in the suffering of Africans. However, there's also the tiny little issue of him being a black supremacist with openly genocidal intentions and the implication he cares more about venting his wrath. But those are trivial details.
The scene of T'Challa backflipping from one car onto the next has appeared in all three trailers.
T'Challa and Killmonger visiting the Ancestral Plane.
Special Effects Failure: Although the movie on a whole looks impressive, the CGI looks far more dated and obvious then several of the more recent Marvel movies:
The third act in general has really wonky CGI. The rhinos have been criticized for how jarring and unnatural they look, and a lot of the stunts are clearly performed by CGI doubles. Killmonger's Panther suit is also very obvious CGI that makes it look like it's made of rubber.
The scene where T'Challa visits the Ancestral Plane for the second time has shockingly obvious green screen effects.
The fight scenes involving the Black Panther suits suffer from the CGI overuse, resulting in the scenes of intense action scenes looking janky and hard to follow.
Tainted by the Preview: Killmonger's suit was first revealed in Hasbro's toyline for the film, and a number of fans complained about it looking rather generic and too much like T'Challa's. This changed when the trailer showed that it had a distinctive golden hue and jaguar-like spots, indicating the action figure may just have been a case of Show Accuracy/Toy Accuracy.
They Changed It, Now It Sucks!: T'Challa's new panther suit has been the subject of criticism and is widely regarded as a step down from his suit in Civil War. Points of contention usually include the increasingly cat-like face mask sculpt, the muscle-printed torso and the glowing purple highlights in combat, often called goofy and cartoonish compared to his old costume.
Andy Serkis as Klaue is an entertaining villain, and both his and T'Challa's comic book counterparts have clashed multiple times in the comics. So you might expect Klaue to survive to bedevil Black Panther in the future but nope, Killmonger shoots him dead halfway through the film. Man, characters played by Andy Serkis just can't catch abreak, can they?
Queen Ramonda spent the later half of the movie completely Out of Focus despite the film focusing heavily on the rest of the royal family. Her grief over her husband's death and son's apparent death is completely glossed over.
Despite being an elderly former warrior and spiritual leader for Wakanda who was once T'Chaka's most trusted spy and dear friend, poor Zuri doesn't get to do a whole lot besides adjudicating the trials by combat for the throne, and in fact is never even shown reacting to T'Chaka's death. We never learn how he went from being "badass spy" to "keeper of the sacred garden", and only gets a brief scene with T'Challa discussing his grief over N'Jobu's betrayal and death, and the moment he steps up to actually make a difference in the plot, he's murdered by Killmonger.
The official trailer highlights Wakanda's unique aesthetic, along with T'Challa and Killmonger's suits forming around them Tony Stark style and Klaue destroying a car with one blast from his sonic arm.
Another debate is whether Jordan should be in this movie at all, due to his involvement in the Fant4sticdebacle. Some people feel that it was too soon to cast Jordan, as they fear that his casting would cause the movie to underperform just like Fant4stic. However, many are quick to point how Jordan has won over critics with the movie Creed since then. Furthermore, defenders will point out that Marvel Studios has had a much better track record than 20th Century Fox's history with the Fantastic Four franchise, and how Fant4stic had such a Troubled Production that it probably would have failed even without Jordan's involvement. Finally, many MCU actors have been in various other comic book adaptationsnote the most notable example being Jordan's predecessor as the Human Torch, Chris Evans making Jordan's casting in the MCU nothing new.
The reactions to the new Black Panther suit have been mixed, with many saying that it doesn't look as good as the one worn in Civil War and wishing he just kept that one. The mask in particular has been the subject of criticism, with some saying the more cat-like design causes it to look Narmy. Other points of contention are the foot claws and muscle-printed torso, which fans deride as overly cartoony.