With Daredevil being taken out of commission for a couple of months following his current crossover “event,” Shadowland, Marvel Comics has drafted a surprise replacement to take care of New York City’s downtrodden and overlooked: T’Challa, AKA the Black Panther. Well, a Black Panther, at least.
Announced on last night’s Attack Of The Show on G4, Marvel’s long-running Daredevil series will be getting a new protagonist and title change with December’s #513, when it becomes Black Panther: The Man Without Fear, with the new creative team of novelist David Liss and artist Francesco Francavilla. Already predictably drawing fan anger – my favorite comment so far speaks to the idea that T’Challa will be cleaning up the mess Daredevil will leave behind after Shadowland by saying “Great. Marvel just made their most major black character a janitor” – it’s also worth considering what this means for the Black Panther franchise itself; released in the same month as Black Panther: The Man Without Fear #513 will be the final issue of Klaws of The Panther, a mini-series starring an entirely different Panther – T’Challa’s sister, Shuri, who’s held the position for a few years now – that was described by its writer as “a fresh start for the Panther.” Just, apparently, not the right fresh start. Will there be two Black Panthers from December, one in America and one in Africa? Will Shuri meet her end as her series ends? Will anyone care?
And for those worried about what’s happened to Daredevil in the middle of all this, don’t. He’s getting relaunched a month later, as Daredevil: Reborn launches. Well, he’s already used the “Born Again” title…
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