Dive into the Marvel library with Erik Killmonger!
Before Marvel Studios’ “Black Panther” hits the big screen this weekend, we decided to look back at the comic book history of a few of T’Challa’s greatest nemeses. Part One covered the life and times of Ulysses Klaue, and today we’ll review the Black Panther’s other archenemy: N’Jadaka, A.K.A. Erik Killmonger!
Forced into servitude by the evil Ulysses Klaue, N’Jadaka’s father was forced to help the mastermind steal vibrantium from Wakanda. The heist culminated in Klaue’s murder of King T’Chaka before the villain went on a rampage, killing N’Jadaka’s entire family before taking him captive.
After escaping Klaue’s clutches, N’Jadaka ended up in Harlem, New York. There, the young man developed a deep hatred for T’Chaka, believing that his weak leadership was responsible for the death of his family. In return for these perceived failures, N’Jadaka vowed to take revenge on T’Chaka’s son, T’Challa. During his time in Harlem, N’Jadaka changed his name to Erik Killmonger and dedicated his life to avenging his family’s murder.
Erik cultivated his combat skills, and eventually got his Doctorate in engineering, before contacting T’Challa himself for permission to return to Wakanda. His request was granted, and once in the country, the villain began working to overthrow the King. After wreaking havoc on several small villages, Killmonger lured The Black Panther into coming to help. Then, using his trained leopard, Preyy, as well as a number of his followers, the man formerly known as N’Jadaka attacked. After being defeated in his initial run-in, Killmonger returned again with the aid of fellow baddies Sombre and King Cadaver. After another battle, T’Challa prevailed again, this time killing his foe in the process.
Killmonger was resurrected by his followers and, in a meeting of villainous minds, teamed up with Klaue to take down T’Challa. This time, however, he succeeded, defeating T’Challa and taking control of Wakanda. Though, when Killmonger tried to consume the Heart-Shaped Herb to undergo the full process of becoming The Black Panther, the Herb turned out to be poisonous to those not of the royal bloodline. After recovering from being poisoned, Erik learned that T’Challa had retaken his place on the throne, but had not resumed his duties as The Black Panther—a New York cop named Kaspar Cole had taken over the mantle instead. Killmonger created a synthetic version of the Heart-Shaped Herb and came to New York City for a rendezvous with Cole, and attempted to woo him into revolting against T’Challa to no avail.
Recently, since T’Challa resumed his position as The Black Panther, Killmonger was the despotic ruler of Wakanda’s neighbor country, Niganda. After capturing T’Challa’s sister, Shuri, Wakanda invaded in retaliation and, in the chaos, Erik Killmonger was killed again.
Meet Erik Killmonger, Ulysses Klaue, and the rest of the characters in Marvel Studios’ “Black Panther” on February 16!
The Black Panther baddie enters Battlerealm!
Erik Killmonger, longtime nemesis of The Black Panther, enters “Marvel Contest of Champions” today! He threatens T’Challa no matter where the King goes—from Wakanda to the cosmic Battlerealm! To celebrate the villain’s arrival in the mobile game, we talked to Kabam Lead Character Artist Gene Campbell, Game Designer Piero Herrera, and Product Marketing Manager Vincent Huynh to get all the details.
Marvel.com: Battlerealm is getting an infusion of a classic Wakandan villain! This wouldn’t have anything to do with a certain Marvel Studios’ “Black Panther” hitting theaters this weekend, would it?
Gene Campbell: Of course it does! All of us here on Contest of Champions are huge fans of the films, like you would expect. We were already hyped for the upcoming “Black Panther” movie. The team always gets super excited when we get the chance to release a build alongside a big event like this, and even more so when we can be inspired by one of the main villains of the film!
Marvel.com: How closely did you work with Marvel Studios to get all of Erik Killmonger’s costume details just right?
Gene Campbell: So much detail and thought goes into creating these amazing cinematic costumes for the big screen. It’s very important to us that we can get as close to these designs as possible. We gather all the great reference from the Marvel Studios team and keep checking in with the cinematic teams to make sure we are getting all those design points correct so we can honor all the hard work and attention to detail that went into making the costumes of “Black Panther.”
Marvel.com: And what about his abilities? Where does this character excel?
Piero Herrera: Erik Killmonger has one of the best defensive abilities in the game when you play him offensively. Whenever activating a Special 2 Attack, he will receive Indestructible Charges that enables him to withstand the opponent’s Special 3 Attack without taking damage. He also has something called Counterpunch Charges, which enables him to shrug off the impact of the opponent’s attack when he is blocking, allowing him to immediately start his own combo. Use this against Stun Immune opponents!
Marvel.com: We know that Erik wants to take T’Challa out by any means necessary, but who else is best equipped to help him survive the ravages of Battlrealm?
Piero Herrera: Put him on a same team with Winter Soldier, Black Panther (Civil War), and Void to maximize Killmonger’s power. Those synergies will provide various bonuses like Regeneration and easier ways to get True Strike, which should help a lot against Champions who Evade such as Spider-Man.
Marvel.com: And he’s available today?
Piero Herrera: Yes! Players will be able to utilize Erik Killmonger starting February 15! Check in-game messages for more information.
Marvel.com: Anything else we need to know about the character or other Marvel Studios’ “Black Panther” related events?
Vincent Huynh: If you’re looking to battle the real Erik Killmonger, head to our Event Quests page and challenge Michael B. Jordan’s hand picked team of characters in his Champion Challenge! This quest will only be live until February 21, so test your skills today to get some awesome rewards!
Stay tuned to Marvel.com and @MarvelGames on Twitter for more “Marvel Contest of Champions” news and interviews!
Players embark on a daring mission within the kingdom of Wakanda.
Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment today announced details around the content included in “Marvel’s Black Panther Movie Character and Level Pack,” the next DLC for “LEGO® Marvel Super Heroes 2.” The pack, available at $2.99 suggested retail price, will add a level and characters inspired by Marvel Studios’ upcoming film, “Black Panther,” in theaters nationwide on February 16.
Set within the Kingdom of Wakanda, players will take the legendary Wakandan Super Hero and his sister Shuri on a dangerous mission within the darkest depths of their homeland, battling mutated creatures and arch-nemesis Erik Killmonger’s vicious army. New playable characters Black Panther (Vibranium Suit), Okoye, Nakia, Erik Killmonger (Black Panther), Ulysses Klaue and Everett K. Ross, add to the main game’s roster of over 200 Super Heroes and Super Villains.
The Black Panther level pack can be purchased separately or as part of the Season Pass which includes six Level Packs and four Character Packs, including the previously released Marvel’s Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 content, and the Champions, Out of Time, and Agents of Atlas Character Packs. The Season Pass is available for $14.99 suggested retail price or as part of the LEGO Marvel Super Heroes 2 Deluxe Edition, which features the main game, access to the Classic Guardians of the Galaxy Character Pack, and an exclusive Giant-Man LEGO Minifigure (Minifigure only available in the physical version of the Deluxe Edition).
“LEGO Marvel Super Heroes 2” is available on PlayStation®4, Xbox One®, Nintendo Switch™, and Windows® PC.
For all the latest on “LEGO Marvel Super Heroes 2,” stay tuned to Marvel.com and follow @MarvelGames on Twitter!
Take the fight to Killmonger and Klaue in Black Panther’s home
Hot on the heels of the release of Marvel Studios’ “Black Panther,” the world of “Marvel Future Fight” get a little more Wakandan. Erik Killmonger and Klaue feature as the threats in the game’s new Legendary Battle, while Shuri comes to join the fight alongside her brother, T’Challa. Recruit Shuri, defeat and recruit Killmonger, and deck everyone out in their finest Wakandan regalia as the multi-dimensional battle rages on!
We spoke to several members of the Netmarble team to get the rundown of just how much of Wakanda we’ll see in this update.
Marvel.com: “Black Panther” hits theaters soon, but Wakanda makes a big showing in Marvel Future Fight this week. What can you tell us about this new update?
Minkyun Kim (Lead Game Designer): In this update, we have prepared various characters and content based on the regal nation of Wakanda to coincide with the release of the movie. While Wakanda was previously featured in the “Marvel Future Fight” storyline, this update provides a more detailed look at Black Panther’s home and his allies and enemies. Players will be able to experience the adventures of the sinister Erik Killmonger and Ulysses Klaue, as they plot against the throne, and the heroes that protect Wakanda, namely Black Panther and Shuri.
Marvel.com: Which characters will be sporting new threads as they take the fight to Killmonger and Klaue?
Youjung Kim (System Designer): We have prepared new uniforms for the heroes appearing in “Black Panther”; these uniforms were designed with the movie in mind. Black Panther gets a brand-new uniform, of course, his second movie-inspired costume to be included in the game. Princess Shuri has the Panther Blast Uniform, representing her unique appearance in the movie. And finally, Erik Killmonger gets a golden Black Panther Uniform to face down his nemesis!
Marvel.com: What new heroes and villains are making their “Marvel Future Fight” premiere?
Jongho Park (Skill Designer): We have added the comic versions of Shuri and Killmonger to our game in this update. Players will see that we put great effort to keep Shuri and Killmonger closely aligned with their portrayals in the comics, including their appearances and innate skills. Players will also meet our other new character, Ulysses Klaue, in his movie form. We are excited for our players to experience how we integrated the characters from the film into the multiple layers of our game!
Marvel.com: The film and comic portrayals of Killmonger vary somewhat. Which Killmonger will we see here and how has his skillset been expressed in the game?
Jongho Park (Skill Designer): While Black Panther uses his Vibranium claws to defeat his foes, in the film, Erik Killmonger uses two swords as his weapons of choice. Players will see that this is reflected directly in the game, as his skills are based on his swordsmanship. Additionally, when Killmonger is fitted in his movie uniform, a Vibranium suit like Black Panther, he has greater defensive capability than his comic version.
Marvel.com: With this new update comes a new Legendary Battle. What will players fight their way through this time around?
Jungtae Pyo (Level Designer): This upcoming Legendary Battle is based on the conflict between Ulysses Klaue and Erik Killmonger, who vow to conquer Wakanda for their own reasons, and Shuri and Black Panther, who are sworn to protect it. The Battle is structured in 3 stages; Players will battle in Busan City, Wakanda, and the Vibranium Mine. T’Challa and Shuri must stand against this evil that threatens their home and their people, and the conflict leads them across the globe. We hope they are excited for the various bosses, stages, visuals, and other new elements that we have prepared!
Marvel.com: This update draws a lot from Black Panther and Wakanda as they are portrayed in the film. What fun new elements can you highlight for our players?
Minkyun Kim (Lead Game Designer): We have put tremendous effort in bringing the unique and compelling characters, settings, and other elements from the movie directly into the game, just as we did with the previous update inspired by Marvel’s “Thor: Ragnorak.” We hope that this gives players a chance to feel the same exhilaration playing the game as they get from watching the movie. Additionally, we made sure to focus much of our efforts on the backdrops and visual scenes for this update. Our ultimate goal is to have our players feel fun and excitement exploring the unknown lands of Wakanda and the adventures that unfold!
Marvel Future Fight is available worldwide on the App Store® and Google Play™. For all the latest on “Marvel Future Fight,” stay tuned to Marvel.com and @MarvelGames on Twitter!
Running the deadly gauntlet of Killmonger!
For more than 50 years, the Black Panther has stood at the forefront on the Marvel Universe. With T’Challa appearing on the big screen again this year in both Marvel Studios’ “Black Panther” and “Avengers: Infinity War,” take a look back at over five decades worth of comic book adventures for the King of Wakanda!
Still exiled to the Land of the Chilling Mists by his rival Erik Killmonger in JUNGLE ACTION #13, The Black Panther met and defeated a creature once thought to be only a Wakandan legend, the white gorilla. Exiting that area, he then pursued Killmonger into the dreaded Serpent Valley in JUNGLE ACTION #14, where the King of Wakanda avoided the jaws of a gigantic prehistoric dinosaur to stay on the track of his foe.
The trail next took T’Challa into the Forest of Thorns in JUNGLE ACTION #15, but Killmonger’s newest assassin, Salamander K’Ruel, and a curious pterodactyl made things hot for the Panther while he sought his opponent. Meanwhile, back in Central Wakanda, the wily assassin called Venomm escaped from his captivity there in JUNGLE ACTION #16.
After informing the Avengers that he couldn’t return to the States and continue his membership in AVENGERS #137, T’Challa witnessed a wholescale invasion of his capital city by Killmonger’s army of assassins and dinosaurs in JUNGLE ACTION #17. This led to a final confrontation between himself and the would-be usurper at Warrior Falls, but one of the Panther’s associates, Kantu, ended the clash by pushing Killmonger into the Falls, seemingly killing him.
Believing the threat of Killmonger to be over in JUNGLE ACTION #18, the Panther found himself the target of the fallen man’s mate, Madam Slay, who captured and tortured T’Challa for the incident at Warrior Falls.
The Black Panther jetted to the United States in JUNGLE ACTION #19 to visit his friend Monica Lynne’s parents at their home in Georgia, but received a rude welcome by the vicious Dragon’s Circle. The Ku Klux Klan added fuel to the fire in JUNGLE ACTION #20 when after a battle with T’Challa they captured him and tied him to a burning cross.
Once freed from the fiery trap, the Panther turned the tables on the Klan and the Dragon’s Circle in JUNGLE ACTION #21 by attacking their rally and bringing them to justice for their crimes in Georgia. Later, T’Challa and Monica listened to a story of the post-Civil War years told by Monica’s mother in JUNGLE ACTION #22, as Monica imagined the Black Panther mixed in with the historical details of the tale.
Still in the States in JUNGLE ACTION #24, the Panther held off an attack by Windeagle, a young man outfitted with Wakandan flight technology by the Dragon’s Circle. In DAREDEVIL ANNUAL #4, T’Challa made his way to New York City on the trail of criminals, but wound up in a battle between the Namor the Sub-Mariner, the Man Without Fear, and a new villain called the Mind Master.
Get ready for T'Challa's royal arrival on screen on February 16!
T’Challa first appeared in the pages of Jack Kirby and Stan Lee’s 1966 FANTASTIC FOUR (#52). Now, the heir to the Wakandan throne gets ready to take center stage in the Marvel Cinematic Universe in next month’s Marvel Studios’ “Black Panther.”
Last year, Marvel.com had the opportunity to visit the “Black Panther” set, and we saw and learned tons of incredible information surrounding our Wakandan king T’Challa, the women that make up the Dora Milaje, our main antagonists, and Wakanda itself.
Here are the 10 biggest things we learned about “Black Panther” from our set visit!
- The Marvel Cinematic Universe “Black Panther” is based on Christopher Priest and Ta-Nehisi Coates’ comics runs.
- “Black Panther” continues exactly where “Captain America: Civil War” left off.
- “Black Panther” explores what happens when T’Challa returns home, how does Wakanda cope with the loss of T’Challa’s father, King T’Chaka, and if T’Challa is ready to be the king of Wakanda
- Expect to see and learn about the Dora Milaje (the “Adored Ones”) or as “Black Panther” Executive Producer Nate Moore describes them, “an all-female Seal Team Six,” led by Okoye (Danai Gurira).
- In fact, Chadwick Boseman wants you to know that there are no damsels in distress in this film.
- T’Challa’s 16 year old sister Shuri may very well be the smartest person in the world, and she heads up Wakanda’s technology. Tony, did you hear that? Step up your game!
- The independent African nation, Wakanda, is the most technologically-developed city in the world. Its advancements is due in part to Vibranium, their knowledge of handling Vibranium, and their isolation from the rest of the world.
- There is no shortage of James Bond-like action in this film. Lupita Nyong’o even handles her own stunts giving heavy Judo and Jujitsu influences to Nakia’s fighting style.
- Can we expect any of our Avengers popping up on screen? According to Moore, “There’s so many characters in the Black Panther world that we wanted to explore, we didn’t want to rely on cameos from other movies.”
- As for our antagonists, filmgoers can expect to learn more about Ulysses Klaue’s relationship to Wakanda and Erik Killmonger’s vision for Wakanda’s power and legacy.
We’ll be exploring more secrets and insights of Marvel Studios’ “Black Panther” in the coming days and weeks leading up to its theatrical release!
Get your tickets now for “Black Panther” and stay tuned for even more royal action in the coming days and weeks!
If you’re interested in learning more about Wakandan architecture and Marvel Studios’ “Black Panther,” pick up MARVEL’S BLACK PANTHER: THE ART OF THE MOVIE in stores February 13. Go behind the scenes with exclusive concept artwork and in-depth analysis from the filmmakers in this keepsake volume!
“Black Panther” hits theaters February 16! While you await the King, follow @theblackpanther on Twitter and like Black Panther’s official Facebook page!
Black Panther, Deadpool, and The Wasp by Sal Velluto
Erik Killmonger takes his place as the new Black Panther!
Read through some of T’Challa’s most thrilling adventures on Marvel Unlimited to mark Black Panther’s 50th anniversary!
Both T’Challa and Everett K. Ross experienced trials and tribulations in BLACK PANTHER #18–25 by Christopher Priest, Kyle Hotz, Sal Velluto and M.D. Bright. The latter found himself no longer king of Wakanda and stripped of his Black Panther rank by Erik Killmonger while Ross and his boss/girlfriend Nikki fell apart after he discovered that she used to date the King back in college. Making matters worse, Ross essentially facilitated to Killmonger’s defeat of T’Challa.
To help ensure that T’Challa lived after nearly dying at Killmonger’s hands, Brother Voodoo enlisted Moon Knight to aid the once and future king on a journey through the spirit world that actually pit them against Nightmare. Luckily they succeeded, but the son of T’Chaka had to stay in a floating wheelchair for a time.
Meanwhile, Killmonger developed his own take on the Black Panther costume and headed to America where he attempted to join the Avengers. Though the team didn’t quite know what to do with him, the Achebe-hired Deadpool appeared and mixed everyone up by teleporting Killmonger’s leopard Preyy and the Avenger Triathalon to Wakanda.
With the Avengers—consisting of Giant Man, She-Hulk, Wasp, and Iron Man—and the new Black Panther back on Wakandan soil, the players came into quick conflict, but with Triathalon recovered the team took off, leaving ‘’Challa to deal with Malice, formerly known as the Dora Milaje Nakia. At the same time Killmonger attempted at fully becoming the Black Panther. Not one to let another take his place, T’Challa worked out to regain his physical prowess.
Unfortunately for everyone involved, the arc ended with a great deal of blood. Achebe killed Preyy, creating an unflinching enemy in Killmonger. As it happened, he wound up on the wrong end of an assassin’s scope and proved to no longer be a problem—for the time being at least. More troubling, though, came the death of Nikki at the hands of Malice.
All of this came to a head when Ross and T’Challa get into a knockdown, drag out argument that led into the former actually decking the latter. Eventually the two patch things up and T’Challa regained both the throne and station of Black Panther, but not before dealing with more pain and suffering than he’d experienced in quite a while.
Secrets of Wakanda
For the full story on what the Merc with a Mouth was doing working for Achebe and causing trouble for Wakanda, read DEADPOOL #44 by Priest and Jim Calafiore. That issue holds much of the discussion about what to do with Killmonger plus the actual teleportation of Preyy and Triathalon to Wakanda, plus an explanation of what’s up with Constrictor and Titania at the beginning of BLACK PANTHER #23.
Speaking of BLACK PANTHER #23, check out page 12. See that tall panel on the left side, the one with T’Challa reading? That panel features a yellow, black and red costume with a big T on the belt. That’s actually Velluto’s take on Jack Kirby’s very first designs for the Black Panther! All respect to the King, but we’re glad he went with something more simple.
Black Panther helps track down the person behind a massive chemical attack on U.S. Soil alongside his teammates in AVENGERS #65-70 by Geoff Johns and Olivier Coipel.