The Marvel Cinematic Universe is at the threshold of a new era and yet, the scars of the past remain blatantly exposed. It has been 3 months since the premiere of Black Panther: Wakanda Forever and the tragedy that reached the masses on August 2020 was made real once again in the film’s opening moments when Shuri, despite her best efforts, fails to save her brother T’Challa from a mysterious illness.
For a long time, the realm of possibilities presented an opportunity for people to reinvent a truth and apply it as a reason behind the cause of T’Challa’s death in Wakanda Forever. It looks like the fandom has finally found one favorable enough to settle with.
Also read: Black Panther: Wakanda Forever – Why No Avengers Showed Up to T’Challa’s Funeral
MCU Fans Find a Theory to Support Black Panther’s Passing
The inevitability of death is a subject that has been a fascination, obsession, and cause of dread for many poets and painters through the centuries. And yet, when the sickle-wielding reaper does come to collect, it becomes an issue of grave concern for those that are the closest to the person who is meant to pass on. When the news about Chadwick Boseman reached the world during the height of the pandemic, the people who had grown to love and worship the actor had a difficult time processing the insensibility of the fact. But the human mind finds solace in rationality and logic in a time of grief and unprecedented tragedy.
Also read: “He was Black Panther to everyone”: Black Panther 2 Clip Reveals Heart-Wrenching Scene of Nakia and Okoye Addressing Chadwick Boseman’s King T’Challa Passing Away
Consequently, a new theory by Marvel enthusiasts has provided an answer to the questions about T’Challa’s death in the film which corresponds to Boseman’s passing. According to these theorists, the Black Panther’s association with the Heart-Shaped Herb doesn’t end with its ingestion at the beginning of the rites of ascension. Rather, the Bast-blessed Black Panther of Wakanda needs to keep ingesting the herb at regular intervals or succumb to an illness that sets in during moments of extended withdrawal.
Does the New Herb Theory Make Sense in T’Challa’s Context?
The theory about the Heart-Shaped Herb proves to be sound in all aspects, although no such logic has ever been presented in the Black Panther comics before. But considering how Marvel’s cinematic universe has digressed on numerous occasions to create its own canonically accurate world, characters, and events – it’s not a far-fetched conclusion to arrive at in terms of giving meaning to the interlinked fate of Chadwick Boseman and his arc as King T’Challa.
Also read: ‘Obviously, that changed’: Black Panther: Wakanda Forever Was More Focused on T’Challa’s Son But the Story Was Changed After Chadwick Boseman’s Death
However, another rationale found in the comments and one that was derived from the aforementioned theory states that during T’Challa’s fight in Black Panther, the draught that was ingested to strip away his powers for the duration of the initial challenge, followed by ingesting the herb again for his final battle against Killmonger, affected his immune system negatively, poisoning him in the aftermath. As a result, the illness that was spreading in T’Challa’s body was paused momentarily during the 5-year Blip but returned once again (and with force) after he re-materialized.
The latter version makes the theory of T’Challa needing to ingest the Herb at regular intervals to keep his illness at bay and possess the powers of Black Panther seem logically valid without having to apply the same theory to all Black Panthers that preceded or will succeed him (thus keeping it canonically accurate to the comics).
Black Panther: Wakanda Forever is now streaming on Disney+
Source: YouTube | @bruno1