Wakanda Forever: The Local Impact of Black Panther

Sophomore Alaynah Crosby sees hope in The Black Panther film.


The impact of the first Black Panther movie was so immense and took the world by storm.

Imagine the result after the second comes out.

The Black Panther movie allowed black and brown people to see the representation that was long overdue on the big screen.

The BLM movement and Black Panther run parallel, recognizing the struggles that people of color battle and they have both combatted this in some way.

The Black Panther franchise isn’t just about the movies, but in actuality, it leaves an enormous cultural footprint that has been monumental.

Not only was the first Black Panther movie incredibly entertaining, it also grappled head-on with the issues affecting modern-day black life.

Activist Erin Dooley diligently works to push out white supremacy and restore dignity to black people and is very involved in the community.

She works with multiple organizations that press to bring black and brown people the justice they deserve and speak out, bringing awareness for their rights.

Dooley said, “The film is truth-telling in art form. Black people have been saying the same thing for a long time but when it is said in a movie the things Black people have been saying can be heard by our White counterparts… I believe the film allows White people to ask themselves questions about how they participate in a system that keeps Black people

As a black woman in America, seeing Black Panther meant a lot to Dooley.

Dooley said, “Watching Black Panther made me feel seen. To see a movie where black people aren’t the help, the funny guy, the bad guy, or the stupid one reaffirmed that Black people have dignity.

To see an all-Black cast make an incredible movie with an incredible story was honestly life-changing.”

The Black Panther franchise leaves a tremendous cultural footprint as well.

Dooley said, “It is a fictional story but represents true events when it comes to what Black people historically have contributed to society and how we have navigated the colonization of whiteness.”

Black Panther truly was so much more than just a movie, and it has changed many lives.

Dooley said, “The Black Panther movie is important to me becoming more of who I am, I grew up in mostly White spaces so surrounding myself with Black people and Black experiences is critical to my development as a Black woman.”

Dooley says that the historical and monumental BLM movement and the black panther movie tie in together.

Dooley said, ”I believe both the Black Panther movie and the BLM movement are both simultaneously trying to restore dignity to Black people and also open the eyes of oppressors so that they may stop oppressing us.

There is no one-size-fits-all way of doing this so the initiatives of the BLM movement and the Black Panther movie support one another.”

Dooley believes that the Black Panther movies restores dignity to black people.

Dooley said, “Historically that dignity has been stripped from us and it is literally art’s prophetic voice in this film that restores dignity and value back to us.”

Viewers were impressed after seeing the first movie in theaters for the first time.

Sophomore Alaynah Crosby said, “After seeing the first movie for the first time, I felt amazed, it was super well done but above all it sent a strong message.”

Crosby believes the Black Panther movie gives black people hope.

Crosby said it has helped black people, “in the way that instead of bringing down and oppressing black characters, it lifted them up and glorified them, which is rare in mainstream media, so that was beautiful and inspirational.”

Dooley said that she felt ‘so seen and free’ after watching the trailer for the new Black Panther: Wakanda Forever movie.

Dooley said, “The trailer makes me feel like it’s going to be about the liberation of Black women and how Black women bring liberation to other people.”

Crosby agrees with this theory and hopes to see this shown throughout the movie as well.

Crosby said, “Since Chadwick Boseman sadly passed, I believe his sister is going to take on his role as black panther, but I’m excited to see a black woman in power since black women aren’t often represented in mass media.”

The Black Panther movies give people of color the rarity of seeing themselves on the big screen, but more importantly in a high-budget film.

Crosby said, “It’s good to see that people of color can be represented in mass media because you don’t often see that.”