People are seeing MCU's latest offering Black Panther as a groundbreaking film and rightly so. The film is changing the course of superhero movies as we know it. The movie takes us away from the American culture references, which are predominant in the other 17 Marvel movies, and towards a whole new African world of Wakanda. Of course, exploring a new territory comes with a huge responsibility of showcasing new cultures and Black Panther lives up to expectations.
From the costumes of the characters to rituals in the film - everything is an amalgamation of various cultures and tribes found across the continent of Africa. A Twitter user named @diasporicblues posted a thread, which very nicely names the referral points of many of the tribal costumes or aspects of it.
It is established in the film quite early on that whenever Michael's character, Killmonger, assassinates someone, he gives himself a mark on his skin. By the time he faces our hero T'Challa in the battle for the throne of Wakanda, he has hundreds of these markings covering his ripped body. These markings are not just to tell us how twisted and deadly the villain is, but to make a cultural reference as well.
Something that intrigues me while watching Black Panther was this man with a lip plate. He appears several times in the movie and I had clue what that thing in his lips was but I thought it was super cool.
Queen Ramonda is played by Angela Bassett in the film. She is T'challa's mother and wears beautiful headdress throughout the film.
Killmonger is played by Michael B Jordon in the film. He is one of the best villains in the MCU. He develops a liking towards a mask that he comes across while robbing an art gallery. He steals it and we see him wearing it when he helps Ulysses Klaue escape.
The border tribe in Black Panther wear blankets around their shoulders. In the movie, these blanket are technologically advanced and infused with vibranium. They double up as impenetrable shields in the war scenes.
Wonder why Dora Milaje warriors wore red? Here you go!
Another Twitter user pointed out that the markings we see in Shuri's lab are also a proper South African script.
And here is the reason of the earthy tone of the costumes.
It was the hard work of these two women, Ruth Carter and Hannah Beachler, who spent months to research for the film and draw cultural references. We sure see them winning many awards this season.
Well, you have Twitter user @diasporicblues for the awesome thread. Black Panther for the win!
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