Free Digital Download: Black Panther The Intergalactic Empire of Wakanda #1

Book 1: Many Thousands Gone

This month Marvel released a promo code for five free digital downloads of Black Panther comics to coincide with Black History Month.  The code is FOREVER.  Go download them to the app.  It’s worth it.  In terms of comics I haven’t had a lot of exposure to Black Panther.  I’ve seen the movie, and have an issue of Spider-Man that he saves Spidey’s butt in, but haven’t picked up much else.  As such, I jumped at the chance to check these books out.  I wasn’t disappointed.  Ta-Nehisi Coates has penned a grat kick off issue for this series!

The Cover

The cover is really neat.  It features Black Panther standing front and center,looking powerful and majestic.  In the background behind him is a futuristic looking city.  Though a lot isn’t explained in this debut issue, I get the impression this is not a story of the present day T’Challa, but of a descendant far in the future.  Perhaps what is most striking is the colouring inside the title.  It is like peering through a window out onto the universe.  It’s a nice touch.

The Art

I liked the look of this book.  It feels a little light on detail at times, but also gives off a gritty, almost survivalist vibe.  While the detail in some of the characters and aliens are sometimes just filled in with colour, it fits with the story and overall feel of the book.  It feels like it’s taking place in an alien environment, and the art in the book is what really sells that.  Daniel Acuna has done a great job here.

The Story

The book begins with a one page summary of the history of the Intergalactic Wakandan empire, and quickly moves to a slave in the vibranium mines waking up.  His memory is spotty, as all he can remember is a beautiful woman beckoning him to come home.  He quickly makes an attempt to escape, and though he is eventually captured, the way he moves and behaves left me wondering if this was the original T’Challa.

The story is action-packed, yet still manages to deliver on character development, as T’Challa saves a fellow slave that had previously tried to kill him.  Hey, there’s no arguing that our protagonist is a hero!  This book was a quick read for me, due to the excellent pacing, and the fact that it really was a fun issue.  If you haven’t checked it out yet, do yourself a favour and get the download, or track down a trade!

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