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Shuri’s first Black Panther appearance: Explained

Princess Shuri has fought bravely for Wakanda since BLACK PANTHER (2005).

Black Panther comics record her exploits. She snuck out of her room to battle with other possible Black Panther contenders. Shuri’s initial attempt to become Black Panther was cut short. She was unhappy because she thought T’Challa had denied her this opportunity.

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In BLACK PANTHER, Shuri learned what it meant to inherit the Black Panther bloodline and her limits. Radioactive Man in the Great Mound surrounded Shuri, but Shuri slew Radioactive Man with the Black Knight’s Ebony Blade. Instead of feeling satisfied after defeating the villain, she felt overwhelmed by her devastating strength. Shuri, the future Black Panther, learned that she must be physically and emotionally prepared to live. Shuri would rule Wakanda someday.

In BLACK PANTHER (2009), it’s time.


T’Challa’s coma forced the selection of a new Black Panther. Storm, the queen at the moment, was not of royal blood, but Shuri was. Shuri has “stepped out of [her] brother’s shadow,” but Bast, the Panther God, disapproved. Her obsession with grandeur and entitlement made her unfit to be Black Panther, but she was alive! Bast ate Black Panther rejects. Shuri ignored Bast in BLACK PANTHER (2009) #5 and destroyed Morlun in the next issue. Shuri became the Black Panther after fighting for her brother and Wakanda.

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SHURI’s style

Shuri went beyond her brother’s claws and power to fight. Shuri adored gadgets—holopods, spider bites, shark nets, desert suns. Instead of the Dora Milaje, Shuri had a tiny but capable support crew named the P.R.I.D.E.

Shuri and T’Challa plotted how to “abandon” Wakanda in BLACK PANTHER (2009) #10-12. To the outside world, neither sibling cared about their home country after the Desturi took it, but they were only baiting the extremist group, making it easier to strike. Shuri helped rally supporters of Wakanda’s cause during DOOMWAR (2010) to end Doctor Doom’s siege of Vibranium. Shuri warned T’Challa in the last issue that “Wakanda doesn’t start wars” She won’t remember those words.

Shuri looked for Vibranium to revive Wakanda’s economy after DOOMWAR and Doom’s devastation (2010). T’Challa destroyed Wakanda’s Vibranium in DOOMWAR #6 to stop Doom. She journeyed to the Savage Land, New York City, and Madripoor to acquire her country’s most precious treasure.

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Shuri lacked leadership skills. She had a “by any means necessary” attitude and was diverted by hatred and retribution. Namor was framed by Doctor Doom in BLACK PANTHER (2009) #11 for ambushing T’Challa. DOOMWAR #2 shocked Nightcrawler when Shuri murdered the Desturi High Council.

Her (justifiable) rage against Klaw in KLAWS OF THE PANTHER #2 cost her Vibranium, and she nearly murdered Klaw’s Victim, Joya, in issue #4. In AVENGERS VS. X-MEN, she declared war on Atlantis when Namor invaded Wakanda with the Phoenix Force (2012). Namor (falsely) told Thanos the Gems We were in Wakanda. This miscalculation caused Shuri’s collapse.


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The Cabal (including Namor) attacked Wakanda in NEW AVENGERS (2013) #24. Shuri fought Proxima Midnight to save her brother. Despite her troubled connection with T’Challa (see NEW AVENGERS #12), she fought to defend him. Shuri wasn’t perfect as Black Panther, but she always put Wakanda’s needs above hers. But as she learned, it might be costly.

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Source: Marvel Comics (website & Twitter handle)