Michael B. Jordan shares his perspective on why Killmonger is not considered a villain in Black Panther, due to his motivations behind his media.
Michael B. Jordan reveals he doesn’t believe his portrayal of Killmonger in Black Panther it was that of a villain. Black Panther’s first solo outing, starring the late actor Chadwick Boseman as T’Challa, was a cultural reboot and the second-highest grossing film in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. The filming of the sequel, Black Panther: Wakanda Forever, is currently on hiatus from production due to complications from Letitia Wright’s injuries, and is expected to resume production in January.
Erik Killmonger is a former US Navy SEAL and was featured as the main antagonist in Black Panther, played by Jordan. He is the son of Prince N’Jobu (Sterling K. Brown), who was tragically murdered by the young T’Chaka (Atandwa Kani), due to revealing the existence of Wakanda to Ulysses Klaue (Andy Serkis). The death of Killmonger’s father led him to embark on the path of vengeance, seeking to avenge his father’s death and take his rightful place in Wakanda. Killmonger’s ultimate goal was to achieve the global liberation of the black community through world domination.
According to a conversation with Bleach report, Jordan explains why Killmonger is not a villain in Black Panther. By mutual agreement with the host of the interview, in terms of portraying Killmonger as someone who is “a necessary part of the conversation, “Jordan explains that his character shared the same concern for his people as T’Challa, but”I had a different way of doing it. Check out his full answer below:
Many have grown to sympathize with Black Panther’s rival due to his understandable motivations and origins in achieving his means, and Jordan agreed that his character’s argument was not entirely unfounded. Therefore, some may consider Killmonger to be an anti-villain as his desired ends are consistent, but his means of achieving those goals were objectionable. Likewise, fans understood Magneto’s (Michael Fassbender / Ian McKeller) motivations in the X Men series, despite their methodologies, as people recognized their ideals while attempting to dismantle the oppression mutants face by those who do not possess the X-Gene.
A good anecdote of an antagonist is built through his relatable story, with T’Challa and viewers coming to understand and mourn Killmonger’s ingrained suffering by the end of the film. Despite Killmonger’s tragic departure in Black Panther, many have found solidarity in understanding the motivations behind the Wakanda contender due to the continuing discrimination and mistreatment of the black community today. If anything, people have come to understand Killmonger as a victim, a by-product of his environment.