Namor Picks a Shocking Side in Black Panther's Battle With the Avengers
The following article contains spoilers for Black Panther#13 by John Ridley, Germán Peralta, Sebastian Cheng and VC's Joe Sabino, on sale now from Marvel Comics.
In the Marvel Universe, T'Challa/Black Panther is currently locked in a heated conflict with not only his childhood best friend Jhai, but also his former allies in the Avengers. However, the former king of Wakanda just received some backup from the last person he probably expected it from: Namor, the king of at Atlantis.
In the newly-released Black Panther #13, T'Challa and his team chart a course for the headquarters of a group of terrorists led by Jhai. Jhai had been part of a network of sleeper agents T'Challa had placed around the world, but now has his sights set on global domination -- a plan T'Challa intends to put a stop to. Unfortunately, the revelation that T'Challa's own surveillance had allowed Jhai's terrorists to defeat the Avengers has caused the superhero team's trust in the Black Panther to be shattered.
Despite being effectively benched by the Avengers, not to mention weakened from an injury, T'Challa tries to take on Jhai anyway, leading to a showdown between the Black Panther and Earth's Mightiest Heroes. Black Panther finds himself in a brawl with Steve Rogers/Captain America, in which Cap decidedly has the upper hand. But just as Steve prepares to finish things, Namor appears from out of nowhere. T'Challa and his allies are naturally perturbed by this, given the bitter rivalry between Wakanda and Atlantis. In a surprising twist, however, Namor reveals that he is actually in T'Challa's corner. "Rise, T'Challa, and know on this matter -- with you, against all others... Atlantis fights at your side," the Sub-Mariner says.
Why Can't We Be Friends?
Back in November 2022, Marvel unveiled the official spoiler variant cover for Black Panther#13, revealing that the issue would see Namor arrive on the scene to aid Black Panther in the latter's conflict with the Avengers. Namor taking T'Challa's side on this matter is surprising not only because the two characters famously don't like each other (to put it mildly), but also because Namor is himself currently part of the Avengers' roster.
That said, the solicitation text for next month's Black Panther #14 suggests Namor isn't helping his rival purely out of the goodness of his heart. "Battered and beaten after his grueling battle with Captain America, T'Challa has everything to prove and nothing left to lose," it reads. "So when Namor arrives on the scene, Black Panther is determined to make him pay for the pain he's inflicted on Wakanda in the past. But the terrorists of his making still loom large, and Namor never goes anywhere without a plan -- and an angle..." Adding further intrigue is issue #14's cover art, which sees the Sub-Mariner draped in the Wakandan flag.
Written by John Ridley, illustrated by Germán Peralta, colored by Sebastian Cheng and lettered by VC's Joe Sabino, Black Panther #13 is on sale now from Marvel Comics.
Source: Marvel Comics