The death toll in Avengers: Infinity War exceeded all expectations. Sure, we figured Vision would die and perhaps Tony Stark or Steve Rogers if Marvel Studios and Disney were feeling exceptionally cruel. But Doctor Strange, Black Panther, Bucky Barnes and Scarlett Witch?! Pretty much all the Guardians of the Galaxy, too?! And even Spidey? As Nick Fury and Maria Hill collapsed into dust in the post-credits scene, it just felt like one more twist of the knife.
But now we’re receiving news of some confirmed survivors, courtesy of none other than iconic actress Angela Bassett, who was speaking to Screen Rant recently to promote her appearance in Mission: Impossible – Fallout. During the interview, she was asked directly whether her character, Ramonda, mother of T’Challa and Queen Mother of Wakanda, had died when Thanos snapped his fingers, and here’s what she said:
“No. Neither did my daughter. Shuri, she’s a bright girl there in Wakanda. So…”
Well, that’s a relief. From pretty much the moment she appeared in Black Panther, Letitia Wright’s super smart, ass-kicking science princess rocketed to the upper echelons of my favorite MCU characters. Maybe now that there’s a gap at the top of the food chain in Wakanda, Shuri, with the wise guidance of her mother, can step into T’Challa’s shoes and prove herself as the Black Panther?
This wouldn’t be the first time this has happened, of course. Back in 2009, T’Challa was left comatose in the comics and Shuri successfully proved herself to the Wakandan Panther God and officially assumed the role of Black Panther. If the films seek to emulate her arc from the source material, we may also soon see her be able to turn her flesh into bulletproof invincible stone, transform into a flock of birds, gain super-speed and the ability to temporarily animate Wakandan corpses.
Regardless of whether any of that crazy stuff happens, I’m just pleased that she’s still alive and kicking. Rumor has it that Avengers 4 will show us the longterm consequences of life after the Snap, too, with things only reverting to ‘normal’ once Thanos’ actions have been reversed and all our fave superheroes have been de-dusted. It’ll be a fun ride, then, and one I hope we get to see a lot of Shuri and Ramonda involved in along the way.