Wednesday, February 21, 2018

Thoughts on Black Panther

As a white guy who only knows comic book stuff from the movies and from watching comic nerds discuss said movies and point out Easter eggs that I would never have noticed (“That’s a reference to Red Spandex.” “Okay, if you say so.”) I’ve been hesitant to discuss Black Panther.  Mostly because it seems like so many people are hypersensitive to those who don’t see it as the bestest, most influential movie ever made.  And I’m of the opinion that it was a solid movie, but I did have a few, minor issues with it.

One miniscule issue I had was I would have liked more debate over the issue “What should the powerful do?” What they had was good, but given the importance, and relevance, of the matter, I feel more would have been better.  I think it was a month or so ago I saw a post where someone said the first cut of the film was almost four hours.  That, may have been a bit much, but another twenty minutes or so further fleshing out the sides would have been great.

The bigger issue I had was the … cliché story structure.  I mean, bad guy jumps good guy and leaves him for dead.  But he’s not dead, thanks to someone saving something special from being destroyed.  Good guy fights bad guy, but needs to call his plucky female “sidekick” to tech something to help him finish the fight.  Oh wait, that’s the ending of Iron Man.  Obadiah jumps Tony and takes his second chest reactor.  Tony would have died, except Pepper had – instead of destroying it like he had asked – made the “Proof Tony Stark has a heart” thing with his first chest reactor.  During the final fight, Tony has Pepper overload the big arc reactor to finish off Obadiah.

Okay, it’s not point for point the same as what happens in Black Panther, but during the first T’Challa/Killmonger fight I got bored because the bad guy always wins the first fight, that way the good guy has an even greater comeback.  We’ve seen that … a million times.  I guess given all the hype, I was just expecting more than your basic, paint by numbers, comic book movie.

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