During the past couple of years, Marvel movies have gained popularity among the general public and their usual fans. Even those who weren’t followers of the superhero films have now developed a taste for them. More recently in the Marvel universe, “Black Panther” and more specifically the fictional African nation of Wakanda has been trending all over social media.
Along with its growing fame on Twitter, “Black Panther” has become a distinctive entity. The ground-breaking film has earned a total $220 million from opening weekend and an estimated $387 million on global ticket sales according to comScore.
Notably, “Black Panther” rose instantly to one of the top-grossing movies in history by a black director (Ryan Coogler) with a predominantly black cast (Chadwick Boseman, Michael B. Jordan, Lupiya Nyong’o and Danai Guirira). Therefor, the US and countries abroad are in love with everything Black Panther has to offer. Critics have even come to call it “revolutionary.”
The film delivers multiple modern themes. One of the most striking is the presentation of women and the surprising lack of sexism.
The Black Panther has been the protector of Wakanda for generations and reigns over his kingdom in Africa. Fighting to protect alongside him are the warriors of Wakanda. More strikingly, the warriors of Wakanda are not your typical macho-men, but rather ordinary women. They were not portrayed to be unrealistically perfect women, as stereotypes would have them be.
The warriors protected their king T’Challa and Wakanda with loyalty that was unquestionable. Showing no mercy to their enemy or any vulnerability when it came to their duties. Okoye, General of King T’Challa’s armed forces called the Dora Milaje, is his right hand woman.
Okoye is a great example of powerful women with important responsibilities. Unlike other superhero movies, the kings’s warriors are not his sidekicks but rather an elite group he heavily relies on. Beyond that, “Black Panther” shows that these characters are just as important to the plot of the story as the king. The designer for the film, Ruth E. Carter, had a vision for the Dora Milaje to look feminine, beautiful and strong. They exuded power, history and womanliness along with their spirit as a warrior.
“Comics are produced for boys, and they want the girls to be sexy and bad-ass,” Carter said in an interview with the Washington Post. “But you don’t want [T’Challa’s] highest-ranking female fighting force walking around in bikinis.”
“Black Panther” displayed women in a new light by giving them strength, power, and intellectual input.