Erik Killmonger, played by Michael B. Jordan introduced in the MCU in Black Panther with his story connecting to T’Challa, but if he has to return, it will risk his origin’s story.
Black Panther, an amazing action film based on a superhero from Marvel Comics, which Ryan Coogler directed, was released in 2018. It introduced T’Challa, aka Black Panther in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, who was the head of Wakanda, state for the African Nations.
Black Panther introduced Erik Killmonger as a protagonist who wanted to take over Wakanda and use its technology for his own good. In Black Panther, Killmonger had his short but complete story. However, Michael B. Jordan has recently commented about his return as a villain in MCU. The return of Killmonger will become a big risk to his original story.
In Black Panther, Killmonger is T’Challa’s cousin who challenges T’Challa in combat for the throne. Killmonger wanted to take revenge for his father’s death by using the technology Wakanda has. His intentions were clear, making weapons from the technology and sharing it with the African people, empowering them so that they could change the whole world.
In the movie, Black Panther eventually defeats Erik Killmonger, and his death is heartfelt. Killmonger, Black Panther’s cousin, decided to die as his ancestors did instead of living like a man in the chains of slavery.
Killmonger’s Return in MCU: A High Risk
In Black Panther, Killmonger’s story was successful because it was grounded. The fans can relate to Killmonger’s story, even though he was shown as a protagonist, and Killmonger was shown sympathetic and, at the same time, relentless. Killmonger challenges T’Challa in physical combat, as well as his principles regarding the treatment people face in America.
Erik Killmonger’s methods were not appropriate; however, his motivations for his actions were understandable and clear. Michael B. Jordan stated that he didn’t see the character, Killmonger as T’Challa, aka Black Panther’s villain.
Erik Killmonger was a child when T’Chaka killed his father because he was trying to murder Zuri. At so young, Killmonger witnessed his father’s death not from a stranger but from his own family. The reason why he challenged T’Challa and his principles was understandable.
The character of Erik Killmonger in Black Panther was a little complex. However, Killmonger was given justice by opting for a natural and satisfying end for him. And if Killmonger has to be returned to MCU in the Black Panther movies, which already had a meaningful end, it would be highly risky.
The new story of Erik Killmonger might betray the morality of the original tale and his decision to die a meaningful death. Along with that, Killmonger was portrayed opposite of T’Challa, willing to break the rules and deny principles for his own wants and needs if he were to return to the MCU, making his character win which will be a betrayal over T’Challa’s Legacy.
Michael B. Jordan did voice another variant of Erik Killmonger in Marvel’s What if..? Series on Disney+. The next phase of the multiverse is on its way in MCU, Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness, which can explain Killmonger’s resurrection to Wakanda. However, it won’t justify the original story of Killmonger from the Black Panther movie.
The next project in line in relation to Black Panther Series is Black Panther: Wakanda Forever. This project is a difficult task as bringing the story close to T’Challa’s story because of the tragic death of Chadwick Boseman.
Although there hasn’t been an official announcement on the protagonist’s role, rumors have been heard about introducing Namor, the Sub-Mariner as the villain instead of Erik Killmonger.
Michael B. Jordan’s mesmerizing performance as Erik Killmonger in Black Panther movie has set a bar for all the villains in MCU. The return of Killmonger, Black Panther’s cousin in the MCU, is appealing; however, it is better if his story remains finished.