The Black Panther

Comic Books: Where stalks the Panther!

Created by comic book's greatest duo, Stan "The Man" Lee and Jack "The King" Kirby.  The Black Panther roared onto the scene in July 1966. His existence predates the creation of the controversial yet grossly misunderstood African American political party of the same name.   However the first real ownership of the namemay belong to the legendary segregated WWII  all black tank battalion.  Onlyhistory and Stan know for sure.

T'Challa was born a prince and the son of King T'Chaka of Wakanda.  A fabled country in Southern Africa.  Wakanda has been an independent nation since its inception.  Despite manyattempts to invade it due to its main export, one of the world's most valuableand priceless minerals vibranium.  Theextra-terrestrial ore has so many uses in various technologies that many havedied in attempts to take over the small yet extremely technologically advancednation.

One of the most notable fatalities was T'Chaka the king who fell in battle while defending his country against Ulysses Klaw.  A thief and his band of criminals bent on stealing the rare substance.  T'Challa was little more than a child when he saw his father murdered and took revengefor the heartless act.   Nearly killingthe villain with his own sonic weapon.  

The Black Panther is a ceremonial title given to the chief/ King of the Wakandas and the surrounding  tribes as well. He dons the costume for official duties and battle.   As a young man, T'Challa was educated abroad  in order to learn about the world.  As the Black Panther his name is legendary amongst the heroes in theMarvel universe.   A special herb giveshim heightened senses and agility.  Amember of Mighty Avengers, he's  one ofthe first and most famous Black superheroes.

Only Blade comes close and that's only due to his movie trilogy and TV series.  Hollywood and action star Wesley Snipes had sought to bring the Panther to the big screen since the early nineties, but Stan wasn't happy with the early scriptdevelopments  and Marvel had problems atthe corporate level.  The projectlanguished in studio  limbo foryears.  There was an animated seriesdeveloped  by B.E.T. and it aired inAustralia but never here in the states. 

Now some of that original animation and the story line written by Reginald Hudlin has been transformed  into a digital comic book.  It can be downloaded from I-tunes and it rocks hard!  Written with an updated style that still stays very true to the originalstory written over 44 years ago.

The digital comic book uses the same voices cast for the animated series, Djimon Hounsou voices T'Challa, Kerry Washington as Princess Shuri, and of Stan Lee as General Wallace. is glad to finally see this legendary comic icon come to animated life.  "Black Panther: Who is the Black Panther?" will be available for download from I-tunes  and other various formats onJune 23,2010, with new episodes airing each week.  Get ready to have a Hot summer with thePanther!

This is my latest article on  Please check it out and go back and read some of my other stories on the black experience in the comic book universe as well.  I'm the Detroit Comic Book examiner so if you live in another state put Detroit in as the city and look for me! 


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