A detailed look at the last official trailer for Black Panther.
Tickets are on sale (mine are purchased), and the NCAA National Championship game brought to us another gift (besides another reason to hate Alabama): an extended TV spot.
Black Panther “Rise” TV Spot Breakdown
I was just a tad disappointed that what we got wasn’t another full two minute thirty second trailer, but this extended spot provided a bit of interest. While there weren’t really any new action sequences revealed, we did get new extensions of sequences that have already been shown.
The trailer opens on Busan, South Korea, showing the bridge that is the centerpiece of an extensive car chase in the film. We quickly transition to the Ross/Klaue interrogation that opened the original teaser, intercut with some of the action sequence in the jungle.
Ross: You’re telling me that the king of a third world country runs around in a bulletproof catsuit?
Klaue: Why don’t you ask him yourself? Because he’s right outside.
This is an interesting exchange, because Ross already knows that T’Challa is the Black Panther from their interaction in Captain America: Civil War. Perhaps Ross is trying to game Klaue for more information?
Danai Gurira’s Okoye looks on and smiles, “The Black Panther lives.” Judging by the background, this looks to be near the end of the film as the Dora Milaje and Wakandan soldiers appear to be assembled in front of the entrance to the Wakandan mines.
Next we see Zuri (Forest Whitaker) put a ceremonial panther mask on T’Challa (it’s hard to tell from the still, but in motion, you can definitely see this is Chadwick Boseman and not a previous Black Panther).
We can see that T’Challa is fighting Winston Duke’s M’Baku. This is seemingly the first of two sequences we’ll see at Warrior Falls, a location that will play an important role in the film. As part of his ascension to the throne, T’Challa must fend off all challengers, and must continue to do so as king.
In the comics, Warrior Falls is where one could challenge for the mantle of Black Panther, which is a separate title from the King of Wakanda. While Captain America: Civil War showed that these were separate titles in the MCU as well, it could be that Warrior Falls is now the place to challenge for the kingdom directly, rather than simply for the Black Panther title.
“A war is coming,” Zuri ominously warns. In the comics, Zuri is T’Chaka’s right hand man in a fight, and continues to serve T’Challa as an adviser. Here he appears to have taken a more shamanistic approach to life, though I imagine he can probably handle himself as well. This scene appears to be set within a temple of some sort, as candles glow from inside crevices in the wall.
This shot has been included in just about every ad for the film, but a small detail stuck out to me this time: the ring on Killmonger’s necklace. In Captain America: Civil War, T’Challa took great care to take a ring from his father’s finger and place it on his own, seemingly signalling a royal crest. Does Killmonger’s ring have similar significance?
“Let them come,” T’Challa says in a callback to his post-credits scene in Captain America: Civil War. This sequence is edited to seem as if its a response to Zuri’s line about War, but if you look in the background, you’ll see the wreckage of the cars that Black Panther takes out earlier in the jungle fight.
“I hope you’re ready, bro. Cause I’m just getting started.”
Killmonger stares into the mask that he wears when breaking out Klaue. It would appear that this is a museum artifact that he steals. Could it have some significance in Wakanda’s culture? In my breakdown of the first teaser, I noted that the mask does look similar to the mask Killmonger wears in Hudlin’s run, so I imagine that might be where the film is drawing from.
We see Black Panther take out Klaue’s SUV by removing the wheel with his claws before arriving on this shot of Shuri. Previously, I noted that the blue Lexus T’Challa is riding atop of had no driver, but appeared to be operating remotely. Judging by the way this car seems to fade in-and-out around Shuri, I wonder if she’s the one doing the driving using some sort of hologram tech.
One thing I have to give this TV spot props on is that we’re seeing very few new sequences, it seems the marketers are keen not to spoil every action bit. Above is one of the few new shots in the trailer, a continuation of a sequence seen before. This appears to be the spirit realm (which recently acquired the name of the Djalia in Ta-Nehisi Coates’ run), where T’Challa can meet with the previous Black Panthers for advice or to command them.
Killmonger: I want your weapons. Your secrets. It’s all mine now.
Killmonger’s line here is clearly taken from two different points in the film (how can he want something he has?) In the comics, Killmonger has always been motivated by revenge and aimed for exploiting Wakanda’s resources to his own capital gain. Based on his ring, the scars on his chest, and his line about “secrets” though, I’m guessing he may have more emotional investment in his conquest in the film.
This investment is seen here, at Warrior Falls. As he duels T’Challa in front of onlookers, Killmonger asks passionately, “Is this your king?”
The trailer ends with a montage of new shots, including Klaue using his cannon inside the Korean casino, and opposing shots of the Wakandan soldiers and the Dora Milaje charging at one another.
For a Black Panther fan, though, the shot above might be the most interesting of the bunch as it clearly shows W’Kabi (Daniel Kaluuya) working alongside Killmonger in ordering this cruiser to the sky. In the comics, Killmonger and W’Kabi are serious enemies (Killmonger is even responsible for W’Kabi losing an arm), but this shot suggests that the MCU versions might be able to work with one another. Whether this really is a heel turn for W’Kabi, or just him putting his loyalty to the throne over his friendship with T’Challa, it’s a big reveal.
Credit to the marketing department at Marvel/Disney. They’ve definitely been getting everything they can out of the same moneyshots in each trailer. It’s still pretty crazy to think that we haven’t seen anything of Sterling K. Brown, who just won a Golden Globe for his role in This Is Us. There was also very little of Angela Bassett and Lupita Nyong’o in this trailer, with Letitia Wright and Forest Whitaker getting most of the spotlight out of T’Challa’s supporting cast. And while we do see some humor in the form of the playful banter between T’Challa and Shuri, the ads for Black Panther have all been fairly serious, though not as grim as those for Avengers: Age of Ultron or Captain America: Civil War. It’ll be interesting to see if more humor appears in the TV spots as the film ramps up towards its February 16th release date.
This will be my last breakdown for anything Black Panther related. At this point, I’m getting recklessly close to spoiling the film for myself, and I’m going to do my best to avoid all other spots and ads for the film. Thanks for having the courage to journey into this secret nation with me. But we’re not leaving this place alive…