Before the recent release of the new Wonder Woman, some might have wondered if the superhero trope had been done to death. Now, Marvel has released the poster design and first teaser trailer for Black Panther, and the internet promptly lost its collective mind.
Digital media is thought to be king in the modern age, but people tend to engage more with printed materials than digital ones, as the latter is often skimmed within 15 seconds. Marvel has managed to dip into both mediums, combining a traditional love for comic book series with a contemporary adoration for CGI-heavy action movies.
But Black Panther isn’t just a superhero flick. For many fans, the best part about the upcoming movie is that the cast is almost entirely made up of African American actors, including Lupita N’gonyo, Angela Bassett, Forest Whitaker, Daniel Kaluuya, Danai Guirra, and others.
The film centers around an Avengers spin-off character, King T’Challa, who rules the fictional nation of Wakanda. On the day the first trailer premiered, more than 100,000 tweets using the #BlackPanther hashtag were sent in a four-hour span. Impressively, 86% of fan reactions expressed in those tweets were positive, according to a CNBC marketing analysis.
Jonathan Cohen, the principal brand analysis at the Amobee, the firm that conducted the analysis, told CNBC via email, “The real-time reaction to the Black Panther trailer was overwhelmingly positive on social media; reaffirming what the success of Wonder Woman has already proven — that fans of Marvel and DC movies are hungry for representation.”
Even the first poster for the film was met with overwhelming approval. Some have speculated that the composition may be a subliminal tribute to the Black Panther Party. Although the original comic book in which T’Challa appears predates the Black Panthers and the 1967 image that bears a striking resemblance to the promotional poster for the film, the Marvel character has a history that’s become important for African Americans.
When Black Panther is released in February of 2018, it will become the 18th Marvel movie installment. The character will also return as part of Avengers 3: Infinity War later in 2018.