(The Disneycember logo is shown, before showing clips from Black Panther)
Doug (vo; acting as an excited fanboy): We did it! We defeated racism! And all it took was Black Panther! Finally, a black superhero... (The poster for Marvel's Netflix show Luke Cage is shown) ...we've seen that before. But a big-budget comic book movie with a lot of black people in it... (The poster for Spawn is shown) ...we've seen that before. But it made a lot of money... (Posters of Blade, Blade II, and Blade Trinity are shown) ...yeah. And it's actually so good, the Oscars tried to create a new category so that they could give it an Oscar! (A news report talking about the planned and since-delayed Best Popular Film Oscar is shown) This is getting kinda weird. (Speaks normally) Okay, years from now, you might be looking back at this saying, "What the hell was I talking about?", but the hype around this movie was crazy, both before and especially after it came out. People act like this was the Schindler's List of superhero films, like there was never anything better, will never be anything better! We did it! We reached perfection! And me, being the sniveling jerkoff that I am, of course had to go, "Yeah, it's good. I might even go see it again." I say that not because I saw anything majorly wrong with the film, but I saw it almost reaching that epic level and kind of pulling back at the last minute, which is fine. It's still a good movie. I just never quite got on the bandwagon like everyone else.
Story[edit | edit source]
Doug (vo): As you probably remember from Civil War, Black Panther is a superhero who tries to fight for justice. It also turns out he's a prince, though, who's now being appointed to king. From where, you may ask? The land of Wakanda, a technologically advanced super-world whose technology is kept from the rest of the Earth. Why? They feel the world is not ready for such technology and that mankind is just a little too...well, goddamn crazy. Wakanda seems to have crime as well, but its culture is a lot heavier and the people seem a lot more peaceful, that is, until an enemy from the past named Killmonger comes around, played by Michael B. Jordan, one of the best, if not, the best Marvel villain we've ever gotten. He thinks Wakanda should not only open its doors to the rest of the world, but it should invade, attack, kill those who abuse the power they have. As the story goes on, we find out he actually has the possibility of becoming king, and challenges Black Panther to a duel. Huh. For such a peaceful culture, that's a very strange way of working your government. From there, of course, there's action, technology, sidekicks, big armies, all that cool stuff.
Review[edit | edit source]
Doug (vo): There's easily a lot to like in this film, #1, again, being for me, the villain.
(The film's villain, Killmonger, is shown in several clips)
Doug (vo): He's very identifiable, you know why he's doing what he's doing, and you even almost agree to it. Like many great villains, he just goes that one step too far, but you're kind of following him on all the other steps, or at least you identify with where he's coming from. His acting is so great, too. You get an idea that this guy from the streets wouldn't really fit in with this cast that talks really big and epic and has this grand language, but he just walks in like he always owned the place, and immediately takes command and charge, and he's just amazing!
(Footage focusing on the main character, T'Challa/Black Panther, is shown)
Doug (vo): Truth be told, the side characters really upstage the main character in this, which I think is kind of a problem. Not that the main character's bad or unlikeable or annoying or anything, he's just...kind of dull. He's not really Black Panther that often, you don't see him go through that much of a huge journey in terms of learning what it means to be king and getting responsibility and so forth, he just kind of seems like the nice guy trying to do the right thing. Which is fine, but the movie is called Black Panther. I want to know more about Black Panther, I want to find him more interesting. There's a scene where he's at his lowest point and he's practically banished, some even think he's dead, and I thought, "Well, this'll be like a great Moses story, he'll go through all this realization, and he'll go through this spiritual journey, and he'll come back and he'll learn a lot." And I guess he kind of does, but they don't really put that much focus on it. Again, I remember the side characters' journeys through this moment more than I do his journey.
(Scenes focusing on the film's visual effects are shown)
Doug (vo): The effects of this movie are also not very good, surprisingly. That is to say, Wakanda looks amazing. Anytime they cut to this city, it just looks phenomenal. I'm assuming this is where all the money for the CG effects went, because the rest of the CG looks really bad. Thank God this movie does have interesting ideas and characters, because if it just relied on the action, that really wouldn't fly.
(Footage focusing on the film's climax is shown)
Doug (vo): Even the big climax, if they really wanted to make this huge, they would've had Black Panther and Killmonger, like, on the top of a tall temple, fighting against a sunset, something crazy like that. But, no. It's on these fake-looking train tracks, and it just looks stupid. This isn't epic, this is if Marvel did straight-to-DVD movies. And even the big battle happening above with the side characters doesn't seem especially epic because some of their motivations, we don't even get, or the connections with other characters. I mean, there's a scene where the captain of the guards has to take on, like, the new captain of the guards, and they had kind of a connection, but they didn't really dive into it that much.
Final thought[edit | edit source]
Doug (vo): So, yeah, I wanted to be 100% onboard with this. I wanted to shout, "This is epic! This is huge!" But a lot of those little distractions did constantly get in the way for me. I feel like if they cut out a few other elements, like maybe the Andy Serkis character, we could've had more time to focus on these people and sort of relate to them even more. But again, the ones we do relate to, we really relate to. And the issues and problems they bring up are good issues and problems, and they lead to a lot of interesting questions. I also do get where people are coming from when they say this is an important movie, because, yeah, there are movies out there, comic book movies that star black people, but not usually this many and not on such a grand scale, so it is nice to get that representation. But I don't think that makes it an instant masterpiece when there are very obviously some clear problems with it. Not godawful problems, but enough to take notice. Nevertheless, this is still a very enjoyable movie and does do things a little differently than other Marvel films, at least in terms of the issues and ideas it brings up. It still ends with the traditional Marvel climax, it still has the typical Marvel jokes, but the look is very different, the culture is very different, and like I said before, some of these dilemmas are very different. It's still a really good movie, and I really, really recommend it. I want to see even more, in fact. I'd love to see a Black Panther 2, 3, 4, I'd love to see more of these characters, I'd love to see how they develop. Like I said, I didn't really feel Black Panther himself was all that interesting, maybe we can really make him interesting. Maybe we can find out even more about him and what kind of guy he is. So I'd say check it out, but let's face it, you already have checked it out. But go ahead and check it out a few more times to see what works, see what doesn't, and hopefully get a lot of Black Panther sequels in the future.
(A scene showing Black Panther jumping off a rolling car to land in another speeding car is shown)