Marvel made a wise decision in making Black Panther the eighteenth film in the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU). The cultural emphasis surrounding this diverse film shouldn’t be taken lightly. Overall, Black Panther was a fun movie to watch. The cinematography was stunning, and the acting was above average for a Marvel film. If you haven’t seen the movie yet, we strongly suggest seeing it in the theater.
Spoilers Ahead! Spoilers Ahead! Spoilers Ahead!
Before we throw Marvel under the bus for their mishaps, there were several positive points of Black Panther that are worth mentioning. The interaction between T’Challa (Chadwick Boseman) and his sister Shuri (Letitia Wright) was off the charts awesome. Shuri brought life to every scene she was in, creating a good balance of humor over dark and serious tones. Her character was like Q from James Bond, but with spunk, beauty, and a higher intellect.
Erik Killmonger (Michael B. Jordan) was an excellent villain and we wish he had been the only villain too. Not that Andy Serkis portrayed Ulysses Klaue poorly because he was also on point too. The action scenes were cut nicely, although the imaging was on the darker side, making it difficult to witness the brilliance taking place. Most of the CGI was on point except for the crowds gathered around the challenging arena.
Despite the overwhelming success of Black Panther, there were a few things that made little sense within the context of the film and the MCU overall. Because no movie is ever perfect. Which is why we’re here to call out Marvel and Disney on the things that made no sense within Black Panther.
23 Erik Killmonger’s Entry Into Wakanda
Erik Killmonger tells Ulysses Klaue to take him to Wakanda following their escape from the CIA, but Erik Killmonger ends up taking Klaue out. How does Erik find Wakanda? According to the source material, Klaue knows how to get into Wakanda because he stole Vibranium for his Wakandan sonic cannon prosthetic arm. And according to Avengers: Age of Ultron, Klaue sold his entire stockpile of Vibranium before losing his arm and fleeing.
So, Klaue must have known a way in.
Even if Erik Killmonger had a map left by his father, the odds of him finding Wakanda, let alone walking directly into one of the tribe villages, is extremely low. Which means only Klaue knew the way, but he wasn’t planning on going there. It’s also unlikely Klaue mentioned anything regarding how to get into Wakanda off-screen.
22 Life-Saving Vibranium
Everett K. Ross’ spine is severely damaged during the underground casino scene in South Korea. T'Challa places a bead of Vibranium into the bullet wound which supposedly stabilizes the injury. While a tad bit of a stretch — that’s not the real issue.
Ross recovers from his injury in just one day. Yep, 24 hours. And it’s a “I can get up and walk around with ease,” type of healing. Shuri attributes his healing to Vibranium technology. But if this is true, then why wasn’t Rhodes healed in following Captain America: Civil War?
Using Vibranium as a reason for Ross’ almost immediate healing is vague. Vibranium itself is just a metal, and metals don’t heal. It’s also shown throughout Black Panther that Vibranium enhances abilities, it doesn’t provide new ones.
21 Bucky And The White Wolf
The second post credit scene of Black Panther shows Bucky being taken care of by Shuri. Upon waking up, he’s called White Wolf by the local children. But how did Bucky end up in the village?
Shuri has been working on removing the triggers from Bucky’s brain, but wouldn’t Bucky need to be in the lab for her to work on him? A large part of the lab is destroyed during the final battle of the movie. And audiences were not shown Bucky being moved.
Having the kids call Bucky the White Wolf is a callback to the comics. King T'Chaka takes in a white outsider whose plane crashed and ends up adopting him into the family. He would later serve as Hunter (White Wolf), head of Wakanda’s secret police. So, how does this all tie in with Bucky, Avengers: Infinity War, and future installments of Black Panther?
20 Vegetarian Jabari Tribe
It’s easy to write off M'Baku’s statement regarding his tribe being vegetarian as a joke. Technically it was, but the actual joke was about allowing Ross to become a meal, with the tribe being vegetarians, the punchline. But this brings about questions, considering the Jabari Tribe lives in snow-covered mountains. No greenhouses were shown in the wide shots of the village. Plus, M'Baku is wearing Ape fur to stay warm.
No apes were harmed or mistreated in making the fur coats.
Say’s a tag on the back of M'Baku’s winter coat. Very little is explained about the other tribes in Wakanda. This includes how the Jabari Tribe gets their food if they really are vegetarians, along with how their clothes are made without killing other animals. Or do they kill the animals and trade the meat for vegetables? Could the fur be Vibranium?
19 A Pointless Heist
Heist scenes seem to pop up everywhere in movies, and Disney is milking it for all its worth. Most are unnecessary solely because they provide an intense action sequence. This is the case with the museum heist in Black Panther. If Erik Killmonger’s intent was to bring Ulysses Klaue back to Wakanda (alive or otherwise), why go through the hassle of the heist and the breakout?
Simply kidnapping Klaue seems like a simpler plan.
How Erik Killmonger knew the item in the museum was Vibranium, is also a mystery. It almost sounds like Marvel included the heist just to have an action scene in the first act. The whole sequence of events makes little sense once the desires and goals of Erik Killmonger are revealed.
18 Wakanda’s Secret Wealth
The film Black Panther depicts Wakanda to be extremely wealthy. How was this wealth gained though? According to Marvel canon, the public thinks Wakanda had the last of its Vibranium stolen, and it wasn’t even that much. A gram of the stuff is worth $10,000, but this still doesn’t explain the massive amounts of money used to create weapons, state-of-the-art transportation, or high-tech devices. Let alone an entire city.
If Vibranium was sold in mass quantities, the world would have known about Wakanda’s prize resource. The money itself would also leave a paper trail. Considering Wakanda is viewed as a third world country, leaving behind bank records would likely blow their cover. But the country must have billions, if not trillions, at its disposal.
So, how much of Wakanda’s wealth was achieved through money laundering and other illegal methods? If they’re not selling the Vibranium, where is the money coming from?
17 The Disappearance Of Everett Ross
Everett Ross works for the CIA, and a CIA underground holding facility was attacked to break Ulysses Klaue out. Not to mention, large parts of South Korea were destroyed during the previous car chase. To top it all off, Ross suddenly vanishes off the face of the planet.
This should have raised major red flags at the CIA, and possibly the Avengers involved. But instead, Ross’ disappearance seems to go unnoticed. Records should have also indicated that T'Challa was also present during the prison escape, which would have left a reason for the U.N. to get involved too.
Ignoring these facts through the course of the film can’t be logically explained. Not having the issue resolved prior to T'Challa’s big speech, doesn’t make any sense either.
16 Destroying The Heart-Shaped Herb’s
According to Erik Killmonger, the plan was to equip all the weak nations of the world with Wakanda weaponry, allowing for a shift in power. But he destroys the most powerful weapon of them all, the Heart Shaped Herb. Logically, this makes little sense because he might have a need for it in the future. Plus, cultivating the Herb and giving it to his new army would only secure Erik Killmonger’s dominion and world takeover.
Erik Killmonger burns his most valuable possession, securing his failure before his reign even began. Upon the destruction of the Heart Shaped Herb, the other tribes should have challenged or possibly revolted. Except for the Jabari Tribe, no others get involved. The other tribes also value the origins of Wakanda but let Erik pretty much do as he pleases, just because he’s king.
15 A Clean Escape
Ulysses Klaue loves chaos, leaving behind a wake of bodies during the museum heist. The crew disguises themselves as paramedics, allowing for a means of entry and escape. But there are a few things that don’t add up.
No paramedics or police are shown responding to the heist.
Wouldn’t two lone paramedics arriving on the scene before police be huge give away? Klaue and crew walk out with no one raising an alarm regarding multiple bodies scattered about the museum room.
By the time they escaped, the museum should have been surrounded by police (including helicopters). But nobody notices an ambulance pulling out of an alley behind the museum? Let’s also not forget that the girl on the crew leaves (to take a break) at the coffee shop without raising any red flags too.
14 Okoye’s Loyalty
Okoye is general of the Dora Milaje and the head of Wakanda's armed forces. It is her job to serve the king while also serving Wakanda. She mentions several times throughout the film that Wakanda’s traditions and secrecy must be maintained, showing frustration over T'Challa’s decisions.
Enter Erik Killmonger as king and suddenly she’s fine with him destroying everything she has fought to protect. Eventually, she comes around. But only because T'Challa appears, meaning Erik Killmonger isn’t the official king. It would have made more sense if she stayed behind to be a mole, especially after she witnessed the events which take place after the official challenge. If this was the case, the entire final battle in the third act might have been prevented.
13 Disintegrating Cars
The car chase scene following Klaue’s breakout of the CIA bunker was intense. Two beats within the chase, however, don’t make any sense. Okoye throws her spear at one point but is never shown retrieving it. When Klaue disintegrates the car her and Nakia are riding in, she has the spear back and uses it to save herself.
Nakia however, is stuck in the driver’s seat upon impact. The entire car explodes and disintegrates leaving Nakia scooting down the road in the driver’s seat while still holding the wheel to the car. The beat was humorous but highly unrealistic. At the cost of ripping the audience out of an amazing action sequence, the humorous bit was unnecessary and improbable. Thanks Marvel for destroying another great action-packed moment with a plot that doesn’t make sense.
12 Spirit World Journeys
Given the fact that Black Panther is a comic book movie about superheroes, we’re giving the whole spirit world journey a pass. The part that makes little to no sense is Erik Killmonger’s personal journey into the spirit world upon drinking the Heart Shaped Herb.
T'Challa sees his father because he was King of Wakanda. He also sees the previous kings that have ruled before him. But Erik Killmonger see’s his own father, who was never a king. This disputes the entire spirit realm possibility, reducing it to mere visions instead. Which would be fine, except the film pays tribute to the spirit realm during the opening sequence by tying it directly into the Heart Shaped Herb. Meaning Erik Killmonger should have come face-to-face with the one who left him behind, not his own dad.
11 Failed CIA Operation
Either the CIA is meant to look like a joke, or they really are — which doesn’t make any sense. Ulysses Klaue has a rap sheet half a continent long, and the CIA still needs to catch him trying to sell the Vibranium? Let’s say they wanted to get their hands on the precious metal. Why then wouldn’t Ross take him down when he had the chance? Even better, the CIA should have taken him out once Klaue arrived.
Waiting for Ulysses Klaue to make a move doesn't line up with the CIA’s reputation.
Once in custody, they could have interrogated Klaue (like Ross did anyway) and found out where he had the Vibranium stashed if it wasn’t on him (which it was). Ross also knew about Erik Killmonger, but he doesn’t ask Klaue regarding his whereabouts.
10 No Backlash For Actions
The Sokovia Accords were introduced because the Avengers needed to be held responsible for their actions. King T'Chaka even gave a stirring speech prior to the explosion that took him out.
“Our people's blood is spilled on foreign soil, not only because of the actions of criminals but the indifference of those who pledged to stop them,” T'Chaka says of the Avengers. “Victory at the expense of the innocent is no victory at all.”
But T'Challa, Okoye, and Nakia violate T’Chaka’s statement in South Korea, especially T’Challa. Once cornering Klaue, they almost have a full-on brawl with hundreds of innocent bystanders standing close by. The Black Panther should have been held accountable by the rules established in the Sokovia Accords. Even more so since his father spearheaded it. Having him ignore this doesn’t add up.
9 Sharing Recourses
Wakanda apparently withheld their wealth from neighboring countries and people, but secretly tried to improve their conditions of life. Meaning they were burning the candle at both ends, and that makes little sense. If Wakanda truly cared about their neighbors, wouldn’t they have dropped the whole secrecy thing long before the film Black Panther?
There’s also the issue of the other tribes. The film gave an appearance that some tribes were wealthier than others. If all five tribes are one, then why do some have fewer resources than others. We’re straws drawn to see who would have to live secluded in snow-capped mountains, or in the plains out of basic huts? Perhaps W'Kabi’s rebellion was more about money than T'Challa’s failure to bring Klaue to justice.
8 Non-Warrior Mother
The culture of Wakanda favors and promotes women being warriors, hence the Dora Milaje. But Ramonda, the Queen Mother of Wakanda, is clearly not a warrior. While possible, it still doesn’t make sense. Considering the emphasis put on defending Wakanda and its traditions, Ramonda should have been a warrior too.
Having Ramonda not fight takes away from her position as Queen Mother.
Seeing her ride in to save the day with M'Baku would have been priceless, and logical. In the comics, Ramonda is the third wife of T'Chaka, so perhaps her background was in something else. But in the movie Black Panther, it’s presumed she is the first and only wife. What role did Ramonda fill as Queen Mother?
7 Klaue’s Entourage
The casino scene in South Korea provided some memorable moments (wig’s flying), and some questionable ones too. Ross is supposed to be undercover in a casino surrounded by criminals. But he talks directly into his cuff (total giveaway). As pointed out by the Black Panther crew, the Americans stood out like sore thumbs. But only they noticed that.
Black Panthers silent “sneakers” aren’t so silent.
Then there is the grand entrance of Ulysses Klaue. The club is supposed to be a secret from public eyes, but Klaue rolls up with multiple giant black SUV’s. It’s obvious a fight is about to happen, but T’Challa insists on being patient. He could have avoided the entire car chase if he’d acted like he said he would. Klaue announced his intentions clearly, but nobody except Okoye picked up on it.
6 Offering Erik Killmonger Healing
There are several problems regarding T’Challa offering Erik Killmonger the option of being healed after his defeat in battle. T’Challa doesn’t ask him if he yields first, per the rules of the challenge. That means if T’Challa saves Erik Killmonger, neither is king until one yields or perishes.
T’Challa drags Erik Killmonger a great distance out of the mountain and speaks about the beauty of Wakanda before offering any healing help. If he really cared about saving Erik Killmonger, he would have communicated with Shuri immediately after the battle ended. Black Panther’s actions regarding Erik Killmonger’s defeat don’t line up with his actions throughout the movie. There’s also the glaring issue of T’Challa dragging Erik out when surrounded by state-of-the-art transportation. Is it almost like he didn’t want him to survive?
5 Grabbing One Heart-Shaped Herb
Erik Killmonger awakes from his “vision,” disposes of Zuri, and burns all the Heart Shaped Herb’s. Nakia at the same time is sneaking in to snag a Herb as an offering for M'Baku of the Jabari Tribe. She hears the burning, and can see it, yet only grabs one.
If the Heart Shaped Herb is directly related to Black Panther and the kingship, why only grab one? Shouldn’t she have been concerned about the future? Nakia could have saved multiple Herb’s and used them to grow a new garden. If she believes in Wakanda’s traditions, she would have grabbed as many as she could.
Using the Heart Shaped Herb as an offering doesn’t make sense either. M'Baku believes in the traditions of Wakanda and apparently doesn’t know about recent events (because nobody catches him up). Once M’Baku knew about Erik’s plan, perhaps he might have accepted it, but not before.
4 Silly Secrets
Keeping secrets is one of the underlining themes discussed in Black Panther. T'Chaka kept Erik Killmonger a secret, along with the actions of his brother. Wakanda is supposed to be a giant secret, yet a bunch of people seem to know about it. Neither of these secrets makes sense. Yes, there wouldn’t be a movie without them. But that doesn’t mean they’re logical.
Wakanda has also come under way too much heat in recent events for its Vibranium to remain a secret. How did a third world country acquire such an expensive metal in the first place? In 30 years, Klaue kept Wakanda a secret? Highly unlikely. Satellites would have also picked up on the air traffic, pinpointing a location for Wakanda, which would again raise a bunch of red flags.
3 The Final Battle
Black Panther enters dramatically by taking out one of Erik Killmonger’s ships full of Vibranium. But where did he get the weapon from? It’s possible M’Baku had some, but he also refused to help. If they raided the laboratory for weapons, they should have been spotted. If the scene took place, it should have been mentioned at the very least since it wasn’t shown.
The huge fall T’Challa and Erik took seems questionable too. We can see them surviving it due to the Heart Shaped Herb, but it should have seriously damaged them both. And if it didn’t why did a simple explosion take out T’Chaka back in Captain America: Civil War?
T’Challa understands Erik’s pain but inadvertently allows him to take himself out. It this wasn’t his plan, dragging Erik towards the mountainside view would have been pointless. Too many moments aren’t lining up in this final battle.
2 Nakia’s Patience
From the beginning of Black Panther, Nakia is trying to help out Wakanda’s neighbors. T’Challa asks her to stay in Wakanda and rule by his side, but she refuses because she believes in helping the people around Wakanda rather than pretending to rule. T’Challa understands her motives because he has gone out of his way to help those in need too.
Nakia was also a member of the War Dogs, who were often sent on missions around the world to help those in need. Which means T’Challa had to have known that Wakanda remaining a secret had run its course. Logically, anyway. But he fights it and creates a huge mess in the process.
At the end of the film, he tells Nakia his plans to open Wakanda up to the world. She lovingly smiles and agrees, which makes no sense. She should have at least said, “I told you so.”
1 Oh Where Art Thou Soul Stone?
Everyone assumed the Soul Stone would come into play during Thor: Ragnarok. And when that didn’t happen, the only logical place it could be was in Wakanda. But that didn’t happen either. Is it possible no one knows it’s in Wakanda? That seems shady, however, and a little too convenient.
If the Soul Stone is knowingly in Wakanda why not use it to reclaim the throne from Erik Killmonger? Based on the trailers for Avengers: Infinity War, a large battle takes place in Wakanda. And we doubt Thanos would randomly show up there unless it contains the Soul Stone. If anyone knew the Soul Stone was there in Black Panther, their decisions following T’Challa’s defeat in the challenge would have made no sense at all.