Black Panther Annual #1 covers three eras in Black Panther’s history. In one, he’s allies with Everett K. Ross. The second story shows his relationship with Monica Lynne, who is not a native of Wakanda. The final story takes us to the future when T’challa is a grandfather and he’s married to Storm.
The first story, “Back in Black,” is written by Priest with art by Mike Perkins and colors by Andy Troy. This story has a dark tone to it and we see a lot of Everett K. Ross being interrogated. Black Panther is hiding in the shadows and appears towards the end. Once he’s on the page, you can see how strong his feelings are on how the U.S. would use Wakandan technology.
The second story takes us to a time where Monica dies of cancer and it has a huge impact on T’Challa. “Panther’s Heart” has an interesting art style from Daniel Acuña since we see a lot of the moves that Black Panther is making in quick succession instead of just having a single move in one panel. It gives a great look at his finesse whenever he moves. He’s still in mourning and McGregor’s writing makes that ooze out of the page.
Reginald Hudlin wrote “Black to the Future Part II” with art by Ken Lashley and colors by Matt Milla. This is an alternate timeline story and it’s fascinating to see T’Challa and Storm together with grandkids. These alternate stories give the chance to really explore new ideas with the characters.
All of these stories bring something unique to the table and the creators who contributed to Black Panther Annual #1 are some heavy-hitters. I’m not fully caught up on Black Panther comics, but this was enjoyable despite that.
Verdict: Check it out. Black Panther is destroying every other movie in theaters right now, so it’s hard to not recommend checking out any of the comics at this moment in time. Priest and Reginald Hudlin are always going to be associated with this character and Don McGregor has strong ties to him, too. Pick this up if you get the chance.