Created in 1966, it’s taken 50 years for the Black Panther to earn the mainstream success and respect he is currently seeing now. Comic book fans and moviegoers got a taste of what he is capable of in Captain America: Civil War, but 2018 is looking to be the year of T’Challa. In the last year alone, the character has been given multiple ongoing series, became the leader of the Avengers on the Avengers Assemble animated series, is about to get his first feature film on February 16, and will feature prominently in Avengers: Infinity War out May 4.
When we talk about the best Marvel Comics superheroes, we usually talk about people like Spider-Man, Iron Man, and Captain America. The superhero that usually gets left out of the conversation is Black Panther. That is now going to change thanks to all the attention he’s getting right now, but it’s important to note that he’s been one of the best superheroes in the Marvel Universe for quite some time. Gifted with only minimal superpowers that he gained from the Panther God, T’Challa primarily relies on his incredible fighting prowess, advanced weaponry built from Vibranium, and his own intelligence. If the Black Panther is going to be considered among the best, he has the resume to prove it. Here are 15 overpowered beings Black Panther has destroyed.
Namor and Black Panther had a longstanding feud within the pages of Jonathan Hickman’s run on New Avengers. When the Marvel Multiverse begins to collapse, the Illuminati determines that the only way to save their world is to destroy others. However, no one can go through with it except for Namor.
It gets to the point that Namor actually leaves the team and forms his own Cabal with the likes of Thanos and Maximus. Disgusted with their actions, Black Panther works out a way to strand the villains on another Earth, and Namor gets to join them. Just as the Sub-Mariner thinks he will escape, T’Challa plunges a dagger into his chest and, with the help of his teammate Black Bolt, he sends Namor down to the planet that’s about to explode.
14 VLAD THE IMPALER
For a brief period of time, Black Panther filled in for Daredevil as the Man Without Fear who kept Hell’s Kitchen safe. During his stay in New York City, T’Challa went up against a new crime lord known as Vlad the Impaler. This new villain was a former super-soldier with the same strength and agility as Captain America with the added power that allowed him to unleash massive amounts of energy.
The Black Panther would eventually take him on in direct combat, and the fight proved to be brutal. T’Challa seem to have Vlad beat when he ensnared him in a device to mute his powers, but the conflict ultimately came down to fisticuffs. Even with all the power Vlad possessed, he stood no chance against the Black Panther, and his reign of crime ended suddenly.
During the events of Civil War II, Deadpool decides to invade the headquarters of The Ultimates in order to go after the Inhuman Ulysses. After the two have a conversation, he ends up running into Black Panther and all hell breaks loose as they get into an epic battle. It’s hard to imagine a mutant ninja assassin with the most powerful healing factor in the world falling to Black Panther, but it still happened.
Wade and T’Challa battle it out for several pages, with the two trading blows to the groin and Deadpool leaving an “upper decker” in The Ultimates’ toilets. The fight finally ends when Black Panther launches his opponent out the window of the building, breaking almost every bone in Deadpool’s body. T’Challa then throws the toilet at the merc before he can make his getaway.
With the ability to see the weakness in any opponent, it should be impossible to defeat the Inhuman Karnak in hand-to-hand combat. In fact, the only way to beat him is to eliminate him as quickly as possible, before he has time to launch a counter attack. That has proven to be Black Panther’s tactic when fighting Karnak, because he’s managed to defeat him more than once.
Back in Fantastic Four Annual #5 from 1967, while Sue and Reed were announcing they are having a child, Black Panther has an altercation with the Inhumans. He manages to knock Karnak down with one punch. It happens again during During Storm and T’Challa’s trip to Attilan many years later. Karnak sizes him up, but the Black Panther is quicker, and a single knee to the face renders him unconscious.
In the animated series Avengers: Earth’s Mightiest Heroes, the Man-Ape defeated T’Chaka and took the throne of Wakanda. It then came to T’Challa to take on the Black Panther identity and retake the throne. In “Panther’s Quest” he recruits the Avengers in his plan to confront the usurper, but in the end, the Black Panther and Man-Ape fight in one-on-one combat in order to determine the true King of Wakanda.
Much of the fight is highlighted by how T’Challa’s speed and agility overcome Man-Ape’s superior strength. Just when it seems like an easy victory, M’Baku pulls out a sonic device that leaves the Black Panther unable to stand. Just when it looks like the fight is over, T’Challa manages to get to his feet, chase down the Man-Ape, and finally defeat his opponent.
10 DRAGON MAN
Dragon Man is one of the strongest synthetic lifeforms in the Marvel Universe, but he traditionally has the intelligence and the mentality of a child. This has led him to be manipulated by the bad guys over the years, including the geneticist Dr. Erich Paine. While the X-Men are in town, Black Panther and Wolverine take the Dragon Man on in combat.
As a wild animal, T’Challa thinks he can tame the beast, while Logan believes they just need to put him down. It doesn’t look like the heroes will be able to overcome their enemy until Black Panther is able to land a decisive blow against the Dragon Man. It appears that all he needed to do was give him a firm hit to the snout.
9 ANDREA AND ANDREAS VON STRUCKER
Ta-Nehisi Coates tells the story of the lengths Black Panther will go in order to save someone he cares for from trouble. When Doctor Faustus kidnaps an old friend of T’Challa’s, it’s the Black Panther who comes to the rescue. The trail leads him to Club Fenris, where Andrea and Andreas von Strucker have reportedly been holding Asira.
Accompanied by his Wakandan allies Asha and N’Kano, the Black Panther battles the villains inside the club. Andrea and Andreas are able to use their powers to overload T’Challa’s suit and leave him in tatters, but the two still don’t stand a chance. While Andreas is busy threatening him, Black Panther quickly swoops upon him with an energy dagger held to his temple and ends the fight.
Wolverine has always been the ultimate brawler, but when his healing factor is shut down during the “Killable” storyline, his fighting prowess begins to fade. On a quest to find someone who can help restore his abilities, Logan ends up in Wakanda without Black Panther’s approval. The two end up meeting and it turns into brief fight, one that Wolverine never stood a chance in.
T’Challa is easily able to get the better of the weakened X-Men member, with him commenting that Logan’s fighting style is dependent on his ability to take damage. With his powers gone and him unable to heal from the ravages of battle, Wolverine can no longer fight like he once could. T’Challa uses this fact to his advantage and easily bests his opponent.
7 BLACK DWARF
During the events of Infinity in 2013, Thanos unleashed a full-scale invasion of Earth, sending out his Black Order to face the Earth’s Mightiest Heroes. That group of villains included Corvus Glaive, Proxima Midnight, Ebony Maw, Supergiant, and Black Dwarf. It was that last guy, Dwarf Star, who felt he was the right person to send to Wakanda in order to take out Black Panther.
Unfortunately for him he never met T’Challa and the forces of Wakanda before, so he was shocked to find out that they could actually defeat him. Though we didn’t get to see the actual fight take place, we did see the aftermath of the encounter. Black Dwarf went running home to Thanos, only for the Mad Titan to punch him through the floor as punishment for failure.
6 THE FANTASTIC FOUR
Marvel finally allowed the Black Panther to appear on television in the 1990s. Voiced by Keith David, T’Challa showed off his fighting prowess in Fantastic Four: The Animated Series when he took on the entire Fantastic Four at once. The episode “Prey of the Black Panther” proved to be more or less based on the character’s first confrontation with the super team.
Black Panther proved to be too much, even for a team like the Fantastic Four. While he managed to trick Human Torch into a containment pod, he defeats Mister Fantastic and The Thing in combat. He also manages to penetrate the Invisible Woman’s force field and renders her unconscious with knockout gas. In the end, it all ends up being a test because he needed to see if they were worthy enough to help him.
5 DOCTOR DOOM
The Black Panther had to fight off an invasion against Doctor Doom himself, perhaps the ultimate villain of the Marvel Universe. With mastery over both science and magic, Doom is a worthy adversary against any superhero. However, T’Challa ended up coming out on top in the final moments of “Doomwar” from 2010.
In hand-to-hand combat, Doom proves to be too powerful for Black Panther to take out, but his usage of advanced technology allows him to win out in the end. Doom’s desire to take control of Wakanda stems from the massive presence of Vibranium coming out of the kingdom. In order to bring the fight to an end, T’Challa taps into Doom’s armor in order to render all Vibranium in the country inert and useless. This brings the conflict to an end and sends Doom running back home.
4 SILVER SURFER
During T’Challa and Storm’s time as members of the Fantastic Four, the team journeyed into space in order to figure out who stole Gravity’s body following his untimely death. In Fantastic Four #545, they ended up in a conflict with the Silver Surfer, even if they were all friends at the time. You would think Black Panther would stand no chance in a fight, but then you’d be underestimating him.
The Fantastic Four work together to take the Silver Surfer down. After he’s fallen off his cosmic surfboard, T’Challa jumps into action and effectively puts his opponent out of commission by putting him in an unbreakable arm lock. Despite all his powers, the Silver Surfer can’t seem to break free, and the fight came to an end.
3 SUPER SKRULLS
The Secret Invasion storyline proved to be a difficult time for the heroes of Earth, because no one knew who to trust or how to face the challenge. One superhero who knew exactly what he needed to do was Black Panther. When the Skrull tried to invade Wakanda during the “See Wakanda and Die” storyline, he led his people against the enemy.
During the battle, T’Challa took on multiple Super Skrulls all on his own. These aliens had the powers of many of the strongest heroes and villains in the world, and yet Black Panther was able to come out on top. He not only beat up the bad guys, he broke bones and chopped off heads. He then led his people to victory over the invaders.
Sometimes victory can’t be achieved by fighting, so it’s a good thing T’Challa is one of the smartest members of the superhero community. When The Ultimates take on Thanos in battle, they are unable to defeat him. Instead of continuing the hopeless attack, Black Panther comes up with a better way to fight Thanos and bring him down without anyone dying.
While Miss America Chavez and Captain Marvel keep the Mad Titan busy, T’Challa recruits Spectrum and Blue Marvel to put together a device that can block out their opponent’s brainwaves. When the three unleash the power of the device, Thanos drops to the ground unconscious. His inability to die is the only thing that spared him against the technical genius of the Black Panther.
Believe it or not, Black Panther managed to defeat the devil himself in very quick and easy fashion. Before Mephisto went after Peter Parker’s marriage, he challenged Black Panther at the beginning of Christopher Priest’s run on the character in the late ‘90s. Things didn’t turn out so great for him in the end.
After Mephisto and Everett K. Ross spent several hilarious issues waiting for T’Challa, the Black Panther finally shows up and punches the devil right in the face. In order to finally defeat the bad guy, Black Panther allows him to take his soul. The catch is that all the pure souls of his ancestors come along with him, and it proves to be too much for the devil to handle. In desperation, he gives up and goes home.