One of the most interesting topics of discussion about “Black Panther” has been that of Michael B. Jordan’s sympathetic villain Erik Killmonger. A complex character, the mercenary is fuelled by righteous anger and driven by both personal pain and noble motives.
However, the means to his ends include arms dealing, mass slaughter, and a self-centered desire for power which sees him destroy any potential challengers to his throne. Violent payback for injustices suffered being far more important to him than peaceful progress to make sure those injustices don’t happen again.
Some have debated if Killmonger can really be considered a villain, but the man who plays his onscreen father N’Jobu, actor Sterling K. Brown, tells ABC that Killmonger is definitely villain even if he has a point:
“He is a villain because, while his intentions, and N’Jobu’s intentions for that fact, are honorable, they didn’t necessarily go about it [in a way] that would actually bring about the change that they want… He wasn’t trying to create a legacy. He was like ‘I want this for myself. That’s where the intention gets confused with personal ambition, but what he was able to illuminate… is that he is not without a point.”
“Black Panther” remains at the top of the box-office this week and recently passed the $1 billion worldwide mark.