Follow us


Is Aquaman just Black Panther with Killmonger in the lead? We investigate

Spoiler: Yes. Yes, it is

Ujjainee Roy @UjjaineeRoy 23 July 2018, 1:27 PM
Killmonger, is that you — with better tats?

Killmonger, is that you — with better tats? Image: Twitter

Superhero clans are getting predictable on the domestic drama front — be it Marvel or DC.

If you had been a preacher for the #JusticeForKillmonger hashtag after MCU's Black Panther released earlier this year, we've got some news for you. We fear Aquaman might just be Killmonger — only this time, he gets the girl and the title card.

The Aquaman trailer smashed every other trailer which came out last week — and there were a LOT. Shazam, Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald, Godzilla 2, Dr Who, The Titans, Iron Fist.

But the trailer taught us two things — Jason Momoa is more comfortable when wet, and he just might be DC's answer to Killmonger (Michael B Jordan).

Oh, and Atlantis? That's just underwater Wakanda. #NoJoke

The reason we say this is because both films feature the abandoned prince returning home to claim his birthright narrative. But when Killmonger did it, he was straight up made to be the baddie.

In the upcoming Aquaman, directed by James Wan, Arthur Curry aka Aquaman was left in the surface world (or you know, our world) by his mother Queen Atlanna (Nicole Kidman), and while he grows up to be a superhuman who can manipulate tides and communicate with fish, he is not exactly interested to return to his home Atlantis.

But he does return as the 'reluctant king' as he is caught up between the battles between surface dwellers which threaten his underwater home. Plus, he has an evil brother, King Orm, who, unlike Aquaman, was groomed to be the ruler of Atlantis.

In Black Panther, of course, T'Challa (Chadwick Boseman) was brought up as the heir and eventually given the powers of the Black Panther. But when his cousin, Killmonger (who was abandoned by T'Challa's family to fend for himself) returns, he is perceived as a threat.

Killmonger does at one point prove he is more powerful than T'Challa, as he defeats him in combat. Oh, expect to see the public combat ritual in Aquaman, too.

People also resonated with Killmonger as he was the voice of the disgruntled commoner, and sought to use Wakanda's resources to empower people across the world, especially who were victims of social injustice — something T'Challa hadn't wanted at first.

Hence, the birth of the #JusticeForKillmonger hashtag.

"I think when he was a little boy, he had these powers and he didn't hone them in so this whole journey of him going to become the king...the last frame of this movie you're going to see him actually become the thing he was destined to be," Momoa told Entertainment Weekly recently.

This is essentially what the MCU fandom wanted for Killmonger, too.

And while both the abandoned princes come back to take what's their own, the treatment meted out to them is vastly different. Granted Killmonger's techniques were brutal, and he wasn't a very good ruler, but we don't know what Aquaman has up his sleeves either. But he is already getting his own glorified perspective and the title card.

 With its new outing, DC basically asks us to root for the Killmonger-esque hero. Only this time, he looks like Jason Momoa, so it's easier.

But the Killmonger dilemma isn't the only thing Aquaman has in common with Black Panther. Both films focus on a primitive land and its unpredictable futuristic resources. Atlantis looks exactly like an underwater Wakanda. In fact, the shot where Arthur returns home in a flying ship is exactly like T'Challa's homecoming to Wakanda.

The family drama subplot is becoming is a fast-seller in both DC and Marvel movies. So much so, people are calling Aquaman underwater Thor. And considering DC's unfortunate relationship with the box office, we'd say it's a safe bet.

And we're not saying DC is making another Black Panther, we're just thinking it.

Read more:

8 things you need to know about Aquaman before the trailer drops

This is our Benedict Cumberbatch appreciation post. You're welcome, ladies

Frances McDormand to play the voice of God in Neil Gaiman's Good Omens – like she damn well should

Trending stories

We use cookies to enhance your experience on our website by showing you relevant ads and content. By continuing your navigation, you accept the placement and use of cookies. To learn more about cookies and/ or to opt-out of these services, please see our Cookie Policy.