Michael B. Jordan brings swagger and charisma to every role, but Erik Killmonger might just take the cake. The Black Panther villain got ample screen time in the spectacular teaser trailer that was released last month, but thanks to Entertainment Weekly‘s special San Diego Comic-Con issue, we know what really makes this Wakandan exile tick.
“I think Killmonger has his own opinion on how Wakanda has been run and should run, and what I think Michael brings to the table is sort of a charming antagonist, who doesn’t agree with how T’Challa is running things, frankly,” executive producer Nate Moore told EW. “That puts T’Challa in a difficult situation. Killmonger is a voice of a different side of Wakanda.”
Not to mention, he’s mastered the whole “malevolent charm” thing. Just look at him.
The former Wakandan wants to dethrone the Black Panther, and he even takes the violent necessary step to do so by challenging T’Challa to a sanctioned battle at the holy Warrior Falls. Moore likened Black Panther to The Godfather, which makes Killmonger the one lurking outside “the Family.”
Entertainment Weekly released dozens of new photos, including this one of Killmonger and T’Challa squaring off.
Jordan’s would-be usurper isn’t the only antagonist of the film. According to EW, he allies himself with Ulysses Klaue (Andy Serkis), the smarmy arms dealer from Avengers: Age of Ultron. He’s after Wakanda’s lucrative vibranium, an indestructible metal native to the land. With such a valuable resource at his country’s disposal, it’s no wonder that T’Challa wants to keep its existence hush-hush.
Here’s hoping MBJ can break the Marvel Cinematic Universe’s terrible track record when it comes to compelling villains. Erik Killmonger might even have a chance of dethroning Loki as the charming baddie we can’t help but love to hate.