This week's rumors that Selma director Ava DuVernay had signed on to direct a Black Panther movie were a bit premature (though talks apparently continue), but the excitement that surrounded the news confirmed one thing: People really want to see Wakandan King T'Challa on the big screen, and they want to see him done right.

And why wouldn't they want that? Since his debut in 1966's Fantastic Four #52 by Stan Lee and Jack Kirby, the character has played a huge role in Marvel history, anchoring a solo series multiple times (first as the star of Jungle Action, then in a Kirby-written-and-drawn ongoing, then in three more volumes). He's been a member of the Defenders, the Fantastic Four, the Crew, the Avengers and the Illuminati --- the group that became so important to Jonathan Hickman's Avengers run that set up the events of Secret Wars.

He has married Storm and taken over for Daredevil; stories have focused on him as a king and as a crimefighter --- he was a secondary character in his own title for a bit while New York cop Kasper Cole took over --- and he's proven he can hold his own with the brainiest, most powerful characters in the Marvel Universe. Oh, and he was one of the last holdouts against the Marvel Zombies. In every regard, he's one of Marvel's most impressive heroes.

Here's some of the best art featuring T'Challa from the past five decades, from Kirby, Denys Cowan and John Buscema, to Francesco Francavilla, Olivier Coipel, and the best fan art around.


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