Black Panther: African fiction making African history

Actor Chadwick Boseman as Prince T’Challa (Black Panther)

We have heard the maxim “style over substance”, yet in some cases there is no need to choose one over the other, when you can get both in equally healthy portions. The Los Angeles premiere of Black Panther, the latest Marvel super hero movie, had style to spare so let’s start there.

Beauty and poise were on display with the attendees coming out dressed like royalty: African royalty–let that sink in for a moment. The vibrant colours, tantalizing styles and tastefully form-fitting cut gowns and suits of the premier were representative of a culture all too under-represented in Hollywood and world media in general.

The display was more than just eye-candy but served as a positive challenge to our expectations as to what “looking good” looks like. Admittedly, there was much embellishment and free license with the styles and accessories. The outfits were not merely “traditional” African dress, which is fitting, as the fictional country of Wakanda is the work of a creative, futuristic African-Stylized vision of which much more could be said…

Instead, let’s now look at the substance. Black Panther is based on a Marvel comic book that happens to share the same name with the African-American quasi-militant political group that mainly operated in the 60’s and 70’s. The comic has nothing to do with the Black Power group yet is poised to leave a comparable mark in history with the release of the Black Panther film. The hero is Prince T’Challa, the soon-to-be king of Wakanda, a fictional near utopian African country.

Historically it is the first “all black” film with an unprecedented budget and backing of Hollywood. According to lead actor Chadwick Boseman, “Its not just a movie, its become its own thing. It’s a movement.”

The significance of having the director, writers and vast majority of the cast be of African descent should not be understated. Yet, Black Panther is not a “black” film. It is an international big budget film which is an historic step in the right direction that announces to the world that this is how you treat a people and a culture right in media.

 

Click here to view photos of the event

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17 Comments

  1. UDOHREADYET
    February 3, 2018

    Like Thousands of other people I pre purchased tickets to see this film! Hopefully no one buys a boot leg but actively participates in the economic and cultural empowerment such films bring.

  2. Pride Builds self Confidence
    February 2, 2018

    As an avid reader of Marvel comics purchased at CeeBees bookstore on Cork Street in the 1970s I remember when Stan Lee came out with Black Panther. It was a time if civil rights victories and recent passage of civil rights legislation due to leadership of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and the other worthy Black, white, Hispanic, Asian, and Native Americans who allied in freedom struggle. It is good that the Black Panther film cane out. Today we celebrate Black History Month every February in the USA where most overseas Dominicans live. That month needs to be celebrated on Dominica too so we can have pride in our heritage! We will also exalt the good in our Kalinago ancestry and the other strands which make up our heritage where such strengthens us. The sad truth is that it is the absence of pride in too many Black Dominicans which allow for our people to be trampled upon . I salute the Black Panther. Pride in ones self and heritage builds confidence.

  3. Ibo France
    February 1, 2018

    DNO, I’m very proud of you for posting this item which is profoundly uplifting and extremely positive. Our race has been demonized and denigrated for far too long. What is sometimes disconcerting, is that, there are some of us who cannot appreciate the real value in movies such as this one. Keep on striving to disseminate positivity, particularly about our race, when the opportunity arises.

  4. Baptiste
    February 1, 2018

    I can’t wait to see this in the movie theater in Portsmouth!

    • ATKINSON
      February 2, 2018

      Me too, and i hope the Kalinago super heroine “SuperDominica” will partner up will the Black panther, fighting Maria and the Looters :mrgreen:

  5. Andrew
    February 1, 2018

    Next stop is a Maroon epic Movie filmed in Dominica (No harm in dreaming).

  6. Proud to be black
    February 1, 2018

    These comments are disturbing. This film marks a historical milestone in black culture worldwide. Dominicans need to stop viewing the world as just something we see on TV. Look up the history of this Comic book and the very reason the great author Stan Lee even created this in the first place. This is a story of an African Nation which has technology that surpasses any nation on earth. This story has the possibility to show young black children worldwide that they too can be represented without being shown as a thug, thief, rapist, extortioner or someone trying to be anything but black excellence. It is tine that we all stood up and be recognized as the Kings that we are. I am from African roots and I am proud to see that people who look like me can be seen as Super Heroes and not criminals. Long Live T’Chala and long live The Black Panther. I wish to see a thousand more movies from this .

    • Baptiste
      February 1, 2018

      Dominicans don’t read books silly.

    • ATKINSON
      February 2, 2018

      Proud to be black, let not hope they show the black children as looters after a hurricane :mrgreen: because they really, showed the world as stood as kings, if only the police commissioner had the panthers cell number. he could have saved roseau, for our future kings

    • Titiwi
      February 2, 2018

      If a white person said “I’m proud to be white” we would enounce him as being a racist, and we would be right since the colour of one’s skin is not an achievement. It’s nothing be proud or shamed off. And yet, why do we have this hang-up about colour? Why this obsession with wanting to be different and give superior status to it and turn ourselves into racists in the process. We should take a step back and focus on equality rather than colour,something that has relevance to all people, not only us.

      • Irma
        February 3, 2018

        I have several issues with your blog but I will make it short.
        What’s wrong with wanting to be different? If a white person said they’re proud to be white, of course it would be viewed as racism! White people have snatched status and power for themselves from time immemorial. So stating any white pride is more of a face slap to other races than any tacit acknowledgement of their right to do declare their pride.
        Unless and until such time that all races of people acknowledge, respect and allow every colour of people to live freely, then yes, black people should keep shouting out to the world of their black pride.

  7. Anon
    February 1, 2018

    Slow news day DNO?

    • Meself
      February 1, 2018

      Yeah, I was wondering what this has to do with news, especially as it relates to news pertaining to Dominica. I know DNO has to publish international “news” but what is this?

      We don’t even have a theater in Dominica to watch the movie.

      ADMIN: We appreciate your comment. This is entertainment and international news. We have received requests to provide more of all types of news. There are many that depend on DNO for their news as access to various media is still limited in most parts of the island post Maria.

    • Cowboy
      February 1, 2018

      It is a good story about black consciousness and progress. It’s a bit disturbing you do not see it that way.

    • Da Blakker Da Berry
      February 1, 2018

      There is no local politics in this news post, therefore Anon and Meself see no significance in the post; two dummies in a can.

      When hurricane Maria de ka lay our behind and make herself wet wet wet wet wet, then the rest of the world’s news outlets should not have reported on it cause “what does it have to do with them” right?

      Thank you DNO for allowing your readers who don’t know about the movie to know of its existence. They will watch it when their government build a theater for them since is it that have to do everything for them.

    • ATKINSON
      February 2, 2018

      :mrgreen: Very slow

    • UDOHREADYET
      February 3, 2018

      thank you for saying that… Ive been trying to tell people how stupid people like you are but your comment proves that to people who understand the important of culture, history and global representation.
      this is beyond your capacity because of the lazy mind syndrome some Dominicans suffer from. READ MORE BOOKS!

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