It’s been a week now since Black Panther: Wakanda Forever arrived in theaters and a lot of Marvel fans have had the chance to see the sequel to 2018’s Black Panther film starring the late Chadwick Boseman as King T’Challa aka Black Panther. Prior to production of the Black Panther sequel, the question of recasting Boseman was looming over at Marvel Studios. Though they decided not to recast Boseman, the Black Panther: Wakanda Forever mid-credits scene introduced a surprising character that may be Marvel’s way of bringing back King T’Challa. Sort of.
Black Panther: Wakanda Forever SPOILERS below. Mid-credits Scene Explained
Wakanda Forever ends with Shuri (Letitia Wright), who is now Black Panther, visiting Nakia (Lupito Nyong’o) in Haiti. Shuri carries out the ritual of burning the clothes she wore to Ramonda’s (Angela Bassett) funeral — as a way to symbolize a new chapter in her life.
The film comes back to the same location in the Wakanda Forever mid-credits scene. This time, Nakia coming into frame with a child. Nakia introduces Shuri to her son, Toussaint (Divine Love Konadu-Sun), and reveals his father is King T’Challa (Chadwick Boseman), who passed away at the start of Black Panther: Wakanda Forever. Nakia also tells Shuri that T’Challa has prepared them for that moment of his father’s passing. Toussaint than tells Shuri his Wakanda name — T’Challa.
Who is T’Challa’s Son in Marvel Comic?
In Marvel Comics, T’Challa does have a son, Azari, who also becomes the Black Panther on Earth-555326, the universe where the animated movie Next Avengers: Heroes of Tomorrow takes place. But in the comics, Azari’s mother is X-Men’s Ororo Munroe a.k.a. Storm. There were actually rumors that Wakanda Forever would introduce Storm but that obviously did not happen.
Introducing Toussaint in the Wakanda Forever mid-credits scene not only introduces a Marvel legacy character into this universe (Earth 616), but also is a clever way to “recast” T’Challa without actually recasting Boseman so to speak.
“I could not imagine turning to the best young actor in the world who wasn’t Chadwick, and being like, ‘OK, so you’re T’Challa.’ I could not, and cannot, imagine that. I really couldn’t,” producer Nate Moore said in a recent interview with Total Film. “Other people will have a different answer to that question. And we’re very aware of the talkback, and how people feel. And I think all of that, to be quite honest, is fair. Everybody’s going to have a different opinion. I can just say, after being in it, I couldn’t do it. I couldn’t get there.”
Black Panther: Wakanda Forever is currently playing in theaters only.