Film / TVRace

chadwick boseman agrees: “t’challa is the enemy, killmonger is trying to achieve greatness”

March 1, 2018
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While speaking at an event presented by AFROPUNK, The Apollo, The Atlantic this week in New York, continuing the dialogue about themes in Ryan Coogler’s “Black Panther”, Lupita Nyong’o, Chadwick Boseman, and The Atlantic’s Ta-Nehisi Coates spoke on many hot takes. But one of the most notable takes was Boseman’s perspective on the rivalry between his character T’Challa and his nemesis Killmonger.

Taking a stance that many fans have since the film’s premiere, Boseman showed a sympathetic side for the “villain”, as reported in The Atlantic. Attacking the privilege had by the character he plays, claiming T’Challa was “born with a vibranium spoon in [his] mouth”, Boseman said: “It’s the enemy I’ve always known. It’s power. It’s having privilege.” He addressed the legitimacy of black rage within the diaspora and how African Americans might identify more with the villain on this one than in a typical superhero film. “Killmonger is trying to achieve greatness … but there’s an expectation of greatness for me,” Boseman continued. “I don’t know if we as African Americans would accept T’Challa as our hero if he didn’t go through Killmonger. Because Killmonger has been through our struggle, and I [as T’Challa] haven’t”.
Here’s a video of the full conversation, skip to 27’45 for that part:

Killmonger is seen by many as fighting for more than himself, aiming to use Wakanda’s advanced technology for Black liberation and to fight Western imperialism. To him, the elitism of the Wakanda establishment is also an enemy, as it makes them complicit: the leaders of Wakanda have formed a pact with the colonial white leaders of the world that grants them security. They turn a blind eye to the Trans-Atlantic slave trade and European colonialism of the rest of Africa.