The best Black Panther characters

From Ulysses Klaue and M'Baku to Ramonda and Killmonger we think these are the best Black Panther characters and Wakanda's finest protectors.

Black Panther characters: M'Baku

The best Black Panther characters ranked. The reason why Wakanda feels so real, and is so successful in drawing the audience in, is because of the many Black Panther characters who live in the nation.

There are few fictional countries that are as packed full of life as Wakanda in the Marvel movie series. Wakanda was first seen in Black Panther, after the MCU character T’Challa was introduced in Captain America: Civil War, and since then, has appeared in the first Black Panther movie, Avengers: Infinity War, and Endgame.

So, in celebration of Black Panther 2 and everything to do with Wakanda, we’re here with our guide to the best Black Panther characters.

Who are the best Black Panther characters?

  • Ulysses Klaue
  • M’Baku
  • Shuri
  • Nakia
  • Okoye
  • Ramonda
  • T’Challa
  • Killmonger
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Ulysses Klaue

Ulysses Klaue is the secondary antagonist of Black Panther, who had previously shown up un Avengers: Age of Ultron. He’s equipped with a super-strong metal arm, which the smuggling arms dealer uses to destroy his opponents.

The truth is, though, that Ulysses Klaue isn’t a particularly complex or interesting villain, and that’s only highlighted in contrast to Killmonger. Still, thanks to a fun portrayal by Andy Serkis, with his thick South African accent, scarring, and aggressiveness, the character is still simply cool. He’s entertaining to watch onscreen, even if he’s not very memorable.

Black Panther characters: Winston Duke as M'Baku in Black Panther


Played by Winston Duke, M’Baku is the leader of the Wakandan tribe that lives in the countries mountains. He disputes T’Challa’s ascension to the throne. He’s a skilled and powerful warrior, and a natural leader. The character has a magnetic presence on screen, simultaneously demanding that the audience takes him seriously, and also enjoy their time with him.

Beneath his harsh exterior is a Wakandan with a lot of dad jokes – but don’t make the mistake of getting on his bad side. As we see in Avengers: Endgame, he loves Wakanda just as much as T’Challa and is willing to defend it with his life. And, never forget that he’s a vegetarian.

Black Panther characters: Letitia Wright as Shuri in Black Panther


Shuri is T’Challa’s princess sister, who is a genius inventor and the mind behind the Wakandan design group. She is one of the progressives in Wakanda who is willing to open to country up to influence from the outside world. Coupled with her talent for innovation, this sets her apart from a lot of other Wakandans. She’s a key adviser to her brother, who she takes over from as Black Panther in Black Panther 2.

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T’Challa’s former love interest (who he still harbours feelings for) is a passionate, and capable warrior. She is a vital member of the War Dogs, which is the Wakandan intelligence agency, and she uses her role to protect and fight for women in other African countries, like Nigeria.

Nakia played an important role in T’Challa’s campaign to take the Wakanadan throne, and after his success, she worked with him to open up Wakanda to the rest of the world.

Black Panther characters: Danai Gurira as Okoye in Black Panther


Okoye is the leader of the Dora Milaje, and the head of the Wakandan armed forces. She’s a strict traditionalist, who believes in Wakanda’s right to secrecy, and is cautious and distrustful of outsiders. She is also extremely proud, but carries a lot of heart and humour too.

Okoye is also one of the most talented warriors in Black Panther, and she’s even able to hold her own in Avengers: Endgame fighting alongside Black Widow and Scarlet Witch.

Black Panther characters: Angela Bassett as Ramonda in Black Panther


Mother to T’Challa and Shuri, and Queen Mother of Wakanda, Ramonda is played with majesty and nobility by Angela Bassett. She acts as T’Challa’s most trusted adviser, and her influence guides him through the challenges he faces throughout the superhero movie. Ramonda takes on a bigger role and more importance in Black Panther 2 when Wakanda looks to her after the loss of her son.

Black Panther characters: Chadwick Boseman as T'Challa in Black Panther


T’Challa is the Wakandan King, and one of the most impressive leaders in any Marvel action movie. He’s a complex character, torn between many different ideologies and impulses. As the king of the nation he has to balance the quest for progress with respect for tradition.

However, it’s as a superhero where the character really shines. His Vibranium suit is instantly iconic, and he manages to be graceful and completely terrifying in battle. The death of Chadwick Boseman means that T’Challa is not in Black Panther 2, but his legacy as a character – and his influence on so many around the world – remains. The MCU is far, far weaker without his presence.

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The MCU often struggles with villains. Take the Guardians of the Galaxy. It’s a great science fiction movie packed with comedy and heart. But what is there to say about its bland villain, Ronan? However, Black Panther has no such problem.

Alongside Thanos, Killmonger is one of the two best Marvel villains of all time. He is complex, and like all good villains, his motivations and aims make sense. Jordan’s performance in the role makes the movie villain intimidating due to his physical presence and patient intellect. With T’Challa next to him, the two characters carry the action movie and ensure that it is regarded as one of the best MCU superhero movies of all.

And that’s the rundown of our favourite Black Panther characters. For more on the Black Panther 2 cast, check out our guide to the new flying superhero Ironheart or the villainous Namor. If that’s not enough, we’ve cast an eye into the future to bring you everything we know about the new movie Black Panther 3.