Mind's Eye Comics Pick! - BLACK PANTHER LEGENDS #1 -
From writer Tochi Onyebuchi, and artist Setor Fiadzigbey comes Marvel Legends: Black Panther issue #1
One flip through this book was enough for me to want to give this four-issue series a try! Setor Fiadzigbey’s art is breathtaking and beautiful to behold. There’s a fluidity to it and has a life to it that's missing in a lot of modern comic art. Coupled with an immediately compelling story from Tochi Onyebuchi, and we find ourselves treated to a great comic book.
This new Black Panther origin story begins 15 years after the ruler of Wakanda, T’Chaka, adopted a white child named Hunter after his parents were killed. The story seems to take place during the last twenty years of apartheid in South Africa. T’Challa and Hunter have grown up as brothers in Wakanda and are naive to many of the unjust ways of the outside world. T’Chaka, allowing a delegation from the UN to enter Wakanda as a first step to opening its nation to the outside world, coupled by bringing the family to South Africa has tensions high. The Queen Ramonda, skeptical and protective of her sons, Ramonda fears her children and nation will become targets in the outside world. After a fateful visit to South Africa, Hunter is forcibly separated from his family, the UN delegation visit doesn’t go as planned, as enemies close in, and tragedy strikes.
A beautiful 1st issue, both the artwork and the writing. While Hunter may be a new character introduced to the Black Panther mythos, his inclusion highlights the xenophobic nature of the world, including the fictional nation of Wakanda. As T’Chaka struggles to bring his nation into the modern world, he is still reluctant to do so, and protective of his people based on the history of the outside world. Meanwhile, Hunter’s feelings of being passed over by T’Challa, who is destined at birth to become the next King and Black Panther, are very emotional and resonated very much with me. The story is ultimately a story of family found, and family lost. And it’s set up to be a profound and powerful tale.