We May Already Know When ‘BLACK PANTHER: WAKANDA FOREVER’ Occurs on the MCU Timeline

Not only is it tough to make a sequel to the MCU film with the highest critic score on Rotten Tomatoes and the first superhero film to receive a Best Picture nomination at the Academy Awards, but to do so without its lead actor is an even greater challenge. Fortunately enough, Ryan Coogler and his team have taken on that challenge in the form of Black Panther: Wakanda Forever, which promises to honour the legacy of T’Challa/Black Panther actor Chadwick Boseman while also setting up a new character to take on the eponymous mantle. The film will also further explore the African nation of Wakanda, while also introducing the lavish underwater Mesoamerican civilization of Talocan, ruled by Tenoch Huerta’s Namor. From information running around the internet prior to the release of the film, we can expect it to explore the past of the MCU through Talocan, and the future of the MCU through Wakanda, as revealed by Kevin Feige at The Walt Disney Company’s 2020 Investor Day presentation. In this article, we will attempt to break down Ryan Coogler’s vision for the film’s placement in the MCU timeline using official information, rumours and speculation, so let’s dive in (no pun intended)!

The primary events of Black Panther: Wakanda Forever have been confirmed to take place after the epilogue of Avengers: Endgame (the last appearances of T’Challa, Okoye and Shuri on October 29th, 2023), as mentioned by M’Baku actor Winston Duke, saying that his character “was really Wakandan” and that “his entire community has expanded”. The official synopsis for the film also confirmed that the film will follow the events “in the wake of King T’Challa’s death”, an unfortunate mirroring of the real-life passing of Boseman on August 28th, 2020. It is still unclear whether or not the film takes place before The Falcon and the Winter Soldier, which featured the Dora Milaje in 1×03 “Power Broker”, 1×04 “The Whole World Is Watching” and 1×05 “Truth”. The three members we see, Ayo, Yama and Nomble, never make reference to the passing of their King or the turmoil their nation would be in as a result of his death, implying the series takes place before the forthcoming movie. This means that Black Panther: Wakanda Forever takes place after roughly May 9th, 2024.

To go one step further, I would guess July/August 2024 at the earliest based on a rumour from The Cosmic Circus which mentions that Nakia will give birth to her and T’Challa’s son in the film (October 2023 + 9 months = Late July/Early August 2024). Given that we don’t see Nakia visibly pregnant (the baby bump typically becomes noticeable during the second trimester (16 – 20 weeks/3.6 – 4.6 months)), the birth of their son may happen in either the epilogue of the film or in a mid/post-credits scene, however, our prior pieces of evidence are much more sound. Again, this is a rumour, and hasn’t been confirmed to occur.

We do know of events taking place much earlier in the timeline, which we will most likely visit through flashbacks. Set photos and rumours have indicated that we’ll see the Spanish colonization of the Americas (1500s – 1600s) play out in the film (which most recently appeared in Eternals with the Siege of Tenochtitlan in 1521), with shots in the trailer (1:13 – 1:15) of a young Namor (Manuel Chavez) and other Talocanians walking up to a burning building in a setting set in the past all-but-confirming we’ll see this historical event in the past, which may very likely be pivotal in Namor’s backstory, potentially fueling his distaste for surface-dwelling nations like Wakanda.

And there you have it! Our proposed timeline placement of Black Panther: Wakanda Forever is that it will take place primarily sometime during or after July/August 2024, with flashbacks set in the 1500s. Do you disagree? Have any other thoughts about when this or other upcoming MCU projects could take place? Are you excited for Black Panther: Wakanda Forever when it finally releases on November 11th, 2022? Leave a comment below or tag us on Twitter @Geekritique with your thoughts.

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