CAT PEO­PLE

Ta- Ne­hisi Coates and Brian Stel­freeze get their claws into Black Pan­ther

SFX: The Sci-Fi and Fantasy Magazine - - Red alert -

Set to be brought to life on the big screen by Chad­wick Bose­man in the up­com­ing Cap­tain Amer­ica: Civil War, Black Pan­ther will first re­turn to monthly comics in a new solo book writ­ten by Ta- Ne­hisi Coates and drawn by Brian Stel­freeze. Set pri­mar­ily in Wakanda, the open­ing sto­ry­line “A Na­tion Un­der Our Feet” sees T’Challa’s right to rule the myth­i­cal African king­dom chal­lenged by su­per­hu­man ter­ror­ist group The Peo­ple.

“Ta- Ne­hisi starts with a ques­tion, ‘ How can the world’s most tech­no­log­i­cally ad­vanced na­tion still have one of the most an­cient forms of gov­er­nance?’” Stel­freeze tells SFX. “This could get even more com­pli­cated when you con­sider that the king is of­ten out of the coun­try, so we’re ex­plor­ing thoughts that come from at­tempts to an­swer those ques­tions.”

Ad­mit­ting that he’s “only seen what ev­ery­one else has in the pre­views,” Stel­freeze is look­ing for­ward to see­ing ex­actly how T’Challa is por­trayed in the up­com­ing Civil War movie. “I’m dy­ing to know what their ap­proach to the char­ac­ter is, and if it will have any re­sem­blance to ours,” he says. “I’ve had vary­ing de­grees of dis­ap­point­ment with most of the su­per­hero genre movies but Cap­tain Amer­ica has been the ex­cep­tion, so I’m re­ally ex­cited to see Black Pan­ther in the cinema.”

With Creed’s Ryan Coogler hav­ing signed on to di­rect Black Pan­ther’s 2018 solo out­ing, Stel­freeze hopes that some syn­ergy can be de­vel­oped be­tween the comics and the films. “They op­er­ate al­most in sep­a­rate worlds, so I can’t re­ally take on too much of an in­flu­ence from the movies,” he says. “But if it’s not too ar­ro­gant for me to say, I hope they can take a lead from us.”

Black Pan­ther # 1 is re­leased by Marvel on 6 April.

Can T’Challa still rule his king­dom when he’s out sav­ing the world?

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