Created by comic book's greatest duo, Stan "The Man" Lee and Jack "The King" Kirby. The Black Panther roared onto the scene in July 1966. His existence predates the creation of the controversial yet grossly misunderstood African American political party of the same name.
However the first real ownership of the name may belong to the legendary segregated WWII all black tank battalion. Only history and Stan know for sure.
T'Challa was born a prince and the son of King T'Chaka of Wakanda. A fabled country in Southern Africa. Wakanda has been an independent nation since its inception.
Despite many attempts to invade it due to its main export, one of the world's most valuable and priceless minerals vibranium. The extra-terrestrial ore has so many uses in various technologies that many have died in attempts to take over the small yet extremely technologically advanced nation.
One of the most notable fatalities was T'Chaka the king who fell in battle while defending his country against Ulysses Klaw. A thief and his band of criminals bent on stealing the rare substance.
T'Challa was little more than a child when he saw his father murdered and took revenge for the heartless act. Nearly killing the villain with his own sonic weapon.
The Black Panther is a ceremonial title given to the chief/ King of the Wakandas and the surrounding tribes as well. He dons the costume for official duties and battle. As a young man, T'Challa was educated abroad in order to learn about the world. As the Black Panther his name is legendary amongst the heroes in the Marvel universe.
A special herb gives him heightened senses and agility. A member of Mighty Avengers, he's one of the first and most famous Black superheroes.
Only Blade comes close and that's only due to his movie trilogy and TV series.
Hollywood and action star Wesley Snipes had sought to bring the Panther to the big screen since the early nineties, but Stan wasn't happy with the early script developments and Marvel had problems at the corporate level.
The project languished in studio limbo for years. There was an animated series developed by B.E.T. and it aired in Australia but never here in the states.
Now some of that original animation and the story line written by Reginald Hudlin has been transformed into a digital comic book. It can be downloaded from I-tunes and it rocks hard! Written with an updated style that still stays very true to the original story written over 44 years ago.
The digital comic book uses the same voices cast for the animated series, Djimon Hounsou voices T'Challa, Kerry Washington as Princess Shuri, and of course Stan Lee as General Wallace.
Examiner.com is glad to finally see this legendary comic icon come to animated life. "Black Panther: Who is the Black Panther?" will be available for download from I-tunes and other various formats on June 23,2010, with new episodes airing each week. Get ready to have a Hot summer with the Panther!
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