Black Panther #1 Review

Black Panther #1 Review – “Reign At Dusk”

Black Panther is a character whose series I’ve never read as it was going on. I’ve mostly caught up with all of the Black Panther series through Marvel Unlimited. But with Marvel getting a lot of new creative team runs on their Avengers line this appears to be a good time to see how all the franchise is doing. Black Panther is part of that refresh as Eve Ewing and Chris Allen are taking over the series. Based on the preview it looks like Ewing and Allen will be continuing the “King In Exile” direction for T’Challa. How will that start of this new series? Let’s find out with Black Panther #1.


Writer: Eve L. Ewing

Artist: Chris Allen

Inkers: Chris Allen and Craig Yeung

Colorist: Jesus Aburtov

Letterer: Joe Sabino


Still in exile, Black Panther has secretly made The City of Birnin T’Chaka his new home where he does his best to help people from the shadows and fight the remnants of the Hatut Zeraze. While on patrol N’Yobi Umaru, a lawyer who provides free services to his community, catches Black Panther’s attention.

One night one of the Hatut Zeraze corners N’Yobi in an alley. Black Panthers saves N’Yobi and they head back to N’Yobi’s office to hide out.

Black Panther #1 Review
T’Challa reminisces of recent events that occurred in his life to start off Black Panther #1. Credit: Marvel Comics

There Black Panther reveals that he is T’Challa, who N’Yobi shows great respect. T’Challa reveals that N’Yobi’s father once served his father and they met as babies. T’Challa mentions he was hoping to find a comrade in N’Yobi. Before they can talk further someone is heard coming to the office and T’Challa leaves.

A mysterious person wearing a white costume named Beisa shows up and searches through N’Yobi’s office. Once she finds the information she needs Beisa says that since she didn’t expect N’Yobi to be there she will let him live.

Elsewhere scientists are shown secretly working on bringing Deathlok back online.


From the moment you open Black Panther #1, you feel how the continuity for T’Challa has left him in a complicated spot. There was a choice to either start fresh with the character or continue what has happened. Eve Ewing and Marvel have chosen to continue where John Ridley left off with T’Challa as a King living in exile. That decision comes with its fair share of positives and negatives.

With T’Challa forced to be exiled from Wakanda, there needed to be confidence in the writing to get this status quo over. That is because if the focus is just explaining why that is, Black Panther #1 could’ve easily felt like a full recap issue. Luckily Ewing takes the approach of just moving forward with what the King in exile would do for T’Challa’s day-to-day life.

Ewing makes sure throughout Black Panther to have T’Challa firmly established as the lead rather than an unseen narrator. That is not always the easiest thing to do when it comes to starting off a new series that is heavily reliant on continuity, as we’ve seen a lot in other Marvel series. It speaks to Ewing’s talent that it’s T’Challa’s voice that is always heard when doing his inner monologue. Through that inner monologue, we get a strong sense of conflict going in T’Challa’s mind.

On one end he understands why he was exiled but battles that status quo because he still wants to protect his people. That is shown through why T’Challa makes The City of Birnin T’Chaka, which sits on the edge of Wakanda, is a setting that reflects his state of mind. He could’ve easily stayed away from Wakanda by being a full-time Avenger and journeying throughout the world as a solo hero. But that would not be fulfilling as T’Challa always cares for his people.

This makes his new direction more than him just becoming a Batman-esque hero now. T’Challa is actively trying to find his new place and how he can still help Wakanda as Black Panther. At the same time, he is using this status quo to gain a better understanding of the people of Wakanda his previous status as King didn’t allow him to. Gaining this understanding can lead to a lot of growth for T’Challa that we haven’t seen because his status quo as King of Wakanda had him looking at the bigger picture most of the time.

For all those positives in Black Panther’s new status quo, it does come with a major drawback. That is if you don’t know what has been going on with Wakanda’s politics you could be lost with T’Challa’s current direction. Ewing doesn’t really do much in terms of clarifying where Wakanda is politically at the moment.

Black Panther #1 Review
T’Challa reconnects with N’Yobi Umaru in Black Panther #1. Credit: Marvel Comics

All we get is the atmosphere of Birnin, which even T’Challa says is different from the rest of the country because of where it is located. That leaves a lot of confusion when T’Challa does speak on his status quo since we don’t have those hints of who is in charge of Wakanda’s current standing in the world. That is something future issues will hopefully clarify soon.

Back on the positive side, Ewing does a good job at starting to build out Black Panther’s supporting cast by focusing on N’Yobi Umaru. Black Panther #1 sells N’Yobi Umaru as a key character just as much as T’Challa’s status quo. We spend enough time seeing what kind of person N’Yobi is to care for him being part of the cast of this series. Adding in the connection that their fathers worked together in the past was a nice touch. This works without question as you would expect T’Challa to try to connect with people he knew and was connected to his childhood, no matter how long, in his current status quo.

Similarly, the introduction of the mysterious Beisa was done well. The focus was on selling Beisa as a badass who no one should mess with. The design by Chris Allen alone sells this as the costume Beisa wears has great detail. That all leaves you wondering where Beisa will fall in Black Panther’s new status quo.

On a clearer villain side, the return of Deathlok is a strong choice for the first antagonist for Black Panther to face. Especially if the focus is on Deathlok being a Terminator-like hunter against Black Panther he is a credible threat. Though the way Deathlok’s return is being done does need to be explained more as the characters bringing him back come across as random. That randomness goes back to detail on how we ended up in this Black Panther status quo not being new reader friendly.


While a new volume to the franchise Black Panther #1 very much acts as an extension of the previous run by John Ridley. This approach by Eve Ewing comes with both positives and negatives. Luckily, it’s the positives that largely outweigh the negatives as Black Panther #1 concludes.

Story Rating: 7 Night Girls out of 10

Art Rating: 7 Night Girls out of 10

Overall Rating: 7 Night Girls out of 10