Wakanda is America? Big Red Circle Take

Bald Black Women stand with spears in an ornate palace. If you're sightless and  reading this please let me know. I just found out that this is for you and not an extra place to put in a joke.
Mr Saturday Movies they call me.



Allegory is hard. Just ask that movie about how Black people are discriminated against because they sided with The Dark Lord 2000 years ago, and that is also why Jews run the world.

But political messages are hard, yo know, in a general sense. I mean, if you say maybe government should butt out of your ghost busting business, obviously people who don't agree might sour on your story, and if you say perhaps , that society may be better overall if men can finally learn to express ourselves and not follow a line of thinking in which you create a terrorist group, some people might read it as "yeah, I should totally create a terrorist group! This line of thinking is great!"

So, when Black Panther started getting positive word of mouth, and positive perception in the Black and Not-Fucking-Racist demographics, some...Fine People...decided to get out ahead on it. Knowing that "Aaaaah! The Blacks!" doesn't work as well as it used to, they tried a little  Aikido: to say that Wakanda is, in fact, a place after their own heart. Wakanda is Alt-Right, even, according to them.

After all, a quick reading of the Wikipedia for Wakanda, the fictional African nation that Black Panther inhabits,  you can see the resemblance. It is Isolationist, arguably an Ethnostate. Many even critiqued how it was an advanced and resource rich place that didn't help the sorrounding countries.

But the writers and director seemed to have gotten even more ahead of said critiques. Spoilers for Black Panther follow.

But you're knee deep into my thinkpiece, you know? You had to decide that earlier.

Wakanda being isolationist and not helping the world, especially not helping the beat up continent that is it's home, is not only addressed in the story, it IS the damn story.
It's a picture of Killmonger, in a garden, shirtless.
"Time for some White Genocide up in this piece.  Turn Lara Croft  into a Black!"

King T'Challa, fresh off fighting a fanfic character in a story vaguely based on a story by Mark Milar, is the newly minted king of Wakanda after his father is killed. But unknown to him the villains Killmonger and Ulyses Klau have designs to destroy him. Klau is notorious for sneaking into Wakanda to steal vibranium, the miracle metal that powers this civilization, for Killmonger's father, a Wakandan spy that meant to use the technology to right the wrongs the White People have done on, whom the dead king killed in the confrontation. Killmonger grew bitter at his father's death and at, well, knowing he deserved more than to be a poor Black boy in America.

Wakanda faces immediate criticism from Nakia, Black Panther's also spy love interest, as well as BP's best friend who really wants revenge on Klau. The Jabari Tribe, who seem to be sort of outcasts within the enclave, also  have grievances with the way things are run.

Eventually, Killmonger defeats BP in ritual combat, claiming for himself the throne and immediately launching of into an even more extreme, more advanced  version of  his father plans, a full on invasion of the world using the advanced technology.  And  he also quickly proves that he's not gonna be a nice king either.

After Killmonger is defeated,  and an enormous civil war is ended, T'Challa opens the doors of Wakanda to all (Black?) outsiders, and begins using it's resources to help the world.

You see, what many, on both sides of the racism side, assumed was that because this was a fantasy movie set in fantasy Africa made by an African American  director, that Wakanda was here to answer the question if a Wakanda would be good, and answer it with a resounding yes.

If you assumed that and also where a huge racist trying to gain Nazi points for harshing everyone's mellow, it makes sense you would also be able to do so by pointing out a Wakanda would be bad. But Wakanda was not a statement on Wakanda itself. Wakanda is America.

A prosperous  yet flawed place ruled by people who want to do the right thing, which is not easy because there is no agreement on the right thing. Do they  get involved and risk the consequences? Do they just stay put and look out for those within?
It's a shirtless Chadwick Boseman staring at assorted Africans standing in rocks
It even has a dumb way of choosing it's leader!
 And the movie seemingly comes down with "get involved but to help, not to bully everyone." The movies main plot eventually comes down to Killmonger, who is a creation of both Wakanda's involvement and (mostly) it's apathy towards the rest of the world. To say that America's involvement and (mostly) it's apathy toward the rest of the world has created some of it's enemies is an understatement.

Killmonger's entire plan to use the country's vast resources to "fix" the world, a world that, for the record, really IS that messed up, is in essence wrong not because what he sets out to do is wrong, but because it represents the violent kind of interventionism that always further complicates matters and hurts more people in the long run, Wakanda's own invasion of Iraq.

In the end Wakanda's main sin was to leave people "out there" and not help them, and it boomerangs back to them in the form of one of those persons they left behind.

While some of y'all where asking why the most prosperous, technologically advanced country in the world wasn't helping those in need around the world, taking in refugees, sharing it's resources,  the movie was saying "well, why aren't you?"

But maybe that's just my interpretation.

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