Warning: This post contains spoilers for Black Panther: Wakanda Forever
Michael B. Jordan had to keep his appearance in Black Panther: Wakanda Forever hidden from his family. The actor first appeared in the Marvel Cinematic Universe as the brutal yet convincing villain Erik Killmonger in 2018’s Black Panther. His character, T’Challa’s (Chadwick Boseman) cousin, goes on a brutal road of vengeance that leads him to seek Wakanda’s throne for himself. Though Black Panther ended with Killmonger’s death, his character makes a surprising appearance in the latest MCU chapter.
Jordan’s character Killmonger makes an appearance in a shocking Black Panther: Wakanda Forever scene when Shuri (Letitia Wright) consumes a newly created strain of the herb that grants the Black Panthers of Wakanda their powers & allows them to visit the Ancestral Plane. When T’Challa ingested the herb, he saw his father T’Chaka (John Kani), and Shuri is hoping to see either her deceased brother or recently deceased mother, Ramonda (Angela Bassett). Killmonger, her cousin, appears in front of her, surprising both Shuri as well as the audience. Jordan spoke with Entertainment Tonight about the mystery surrounding his cameo in the sequel. Here’s what he had to say:
“I had to lie to my whole family. See what Marvel had me doing? Lied to my whole family, it’s crazy.”
Killmonger’s Surprise In Black Panther 2 Cameo
The secrecy surrounding Jordan’s appearance, while likely frustrating for the actor and those who were know, paid off as Jordan’s surprise appearance surprised viewers who assumed they’d seen the last of Killmonger. While it’s not surprising that Marvel has been able to hold the secret of Killmonger’s involvement in the sequel movie under wraps due to the many bombshells they’ve kept under wraps over the years, there is a lot of hype surrounding Killmonger’s character, making it even more incredible that the secret was kept so close to the vest. True to the theme of Black Panther: Wakanda Forever, death did not mark the end of the estranged member of the royal family, who returned due to parallels between Shuri’s mission inside the sequel and Killmonger’s mission in the original film.
Killmonger’s appearance achieved an excellent narrative balance of being both surprising and predictable, as Shuri’s journey in Black Panther: Wakanda Forever bore many striking parallels to the villain’s. Shuri lets rage consume her for much of the sequel film as she seeks to bring down Namor and the kingdom of Talokan. Killmonger’s appearance in the film serves as a warning and early foreshadowing of the path that could await her if she continues on that path, which she ignores at the time but eventually heeds, redirecting her energy at the film’s climax.
Killmonger’s appearance in the Ancestral Plane before Shuri worked on several levels. First, it did remind viewers of the Black Panther villain’s status as a member of the royal family and bloodline, reinforcing the Wakandan-Talokan bond. Furthermore, it gave Shuri strong personal stakes in the midst of her many tragedies, reminding her that there was more to lose, and also thrilling viewers who might have hoped to see a different character. Finally, in the film, Killmonger’s speech to Shuri shows the character sticking to his mission from Black Panther, alerting viewers of his strong convictions and also the groundwork his character set for the themes in Black Panther: Wakanda Forever.
Source: ET Online