The Black Panther: Wakanda Forever star, Tenoch Huerta is currently making news with his socio-political and cultural statements with each public appearance since the announcement of the Marvel film. His on-screen presence is no less spectacular and most recently, the actor broke barriers with his ethnic representation on the cover of Empire. However, as far as the film goes, only a bare minimum is known about the role of Namor in Black Panther: Wakanda Forever.
Black Panther: Wakanda Forever Changes Namor’s Arc
Namor the Sub-Mariner is the first anti-hero and morally ambiguous character in the comic book world. Not only is he one of the strongest characters to have ever been brought into existence, but he is often referred to as Marvel’s first mutant. His origin follows the tragic and doomed relationship between a human explorer and a princess of Atlantis, following which he took his rightful place as the ruler of the oceanic kingdom.
However, his life has been marked by a visceral animosity toward the surface world for its reckless mistreatment of the marine world. Namor has been known to sound the warcry occasionally which is also enacted in his appearance in MCU’s Black Panther: Wakanda Forever. However, Tenoch Huerta assures us that that is not all there is to his character. The live-action role of Namor transcends from a villain into an anti-hero by giving him something more substantial, without enclosing the character in a stereotypical representation of a Marvel villain being a persistent thorn in the heroes’ sides.
Tenoch Huerta Claims Breaking Off From Stereotypes
This is not the first time Marvel has intentionally broken away from established plotlines or origin stories to adapt to the needs of contemporary times. The world is constantly shifting and sticking to the literal representations from half a century ago would only contribute to stagnation. Marvel has also gained a reputation for digressing from major origin arcs to suit their larger narrative (for instance, changing Kamala Khan’s origin from Inhuman to mutant).
Tenoch Huerta now adds to this trend when he claims that his MCU character, Namor, will move away from his infamous character trait of being the antagonist — “Latin-Americans are always the bad guys in Hollywood movies. And now we are the heroes – or an anti-hero, in this instance.” MCU has already been causing ripples ever since their announcement of the ground-breaking film.
Now, the entire fandom awaits the revelation of Chadwick Boseman’s successor and the introduction of new characters into the mainstream universe in the last Phase 4 film, before the universe deep dives into the multiversal story of Kang the Conqueror and his entry into the MCU.
Black Panther: Wakanda Forever premieres on November 11, 2022.