Why can’t there be another Black Panther? Warning spoilers ahead. In the first Black Panther movie, we saw T’Challa was not only crowned King of Wakanda, but he also consumed the Heart-Shaped Herb. This allowed him to complete the ritual on the Ancestral Plane so that he could be granted the powers of the Black Panther, which include superhuman strength, agility, and endurance.
However, as confirmed in the trailer for Black Panther 2, the Marvel movie sequel has chosen to honour the late Chadwick Boseman’s portrayal of T’Challa by not recasting the Black Panther cast member, with the superhero movie instead incorporating Boseman’s passing in order to pay tribute to both T’Challa and the actor.
But the events of the first Black Panther movie influenced the sequel, and so, at least for a while, it looks like the Black Panther died with T’Challa, leaving Wakanda without their protector. But why can’t there be another Black Panther? Allow us to explain.
Why can’t there be another Black Panther?
Although Marvel villain Killmonger died in the first Black Panther movie, his actions continue to have a long-term impact on Wakanda and its citizens. After becoming King of Wakanda, he burns all of the Heart-Shaped Herbs which are native to the country. This is because he fears others using the powers of the Black Panther against him.
However, because T’Challa consumed the Heart-Shaped Herb prior to Killmonger doing this, he still possessed the power of the Black Panther and so was able to successfully defeat and overthrow Killmonger. Wakanda had their Black Panther back, so concerns about the future of the Black Panther after T’Challa passed away didn’t seem to be much of an issue at the time.
However, in 2020 book ‘The Wakanda Files,’ which is considered canon to the MCU, it was revealed that Shuri was looking into trying to make a synthetic version of the Heart-Shaped Herb and potentially infuse it with Vibranium in order to conserve the Black Panther’s future. But at the time of T’Challa’s death, she had been unable to do this, leaving Wakanda without their protector.
Ramonda was made Queen and ruler of Wakanda, but because there was no Heart-Shaped Herb for her to consume, she was unable to become the Black Panther.
Amidst the year-long time-jump and loss of T’Challa, it looked like Shuri was disinterested in trying to complete her recreation of the Heart-Shaped Herb, but after Namor the Sub-Mariner attacks Wakanda and promises to wage war in a week, she and Ironheart resume work on this as they prepare to battle.
Eventually, her AI, Griot, is able to 3D-print the synthetic version of the Heart-Shaped Herb, which Shuri made with the help of T’Challa’s DNA. Shuri, Nakia, and Ironheart perform the ritual, and Shuri has an encounter in the Ancestral Plane.
Initially, she believes her consumption of the herb is unsuccessful, but quickly realizes that she does, in fact, now have the power of the Black Panther, meaning Wakanda have a new Black Panther.
But does Black Panther 2 have a post-credit scene? Is Doctor Doom in Black Panther 2? There’s only one way to find out. You can watch Black Panther 2 in theatres from November 11.