Who is Namor & His Possible Impact on the MCU

News recently broke that production on Black Panther: Wakanda Forever has recently started again after being on hold. Despite the delay in filmmaking, Marvel Studios still has its sights set on the current 2022 release date. A lot is riding on this film after the death of actor Chadwick Boseman, whose tragic loss will change the trajectory of the Black Panther story forever. Winston Duke’s character, M’Baku, is rumored to be the new Black Panther moving forward due to a recent expansion of his role. Aside from this, another role is expected to be filled, one fans have anticipated for years.

The primary antagonist of the Black Panther sequel is rumored to be none other than Namor the Sub-Mariner, a character as prominent in Marvel Comics as Black Panther himself. He’s also a more complicated individual. He is one of Marvel’s most notable antiheroes, who has both aided and fought the Avengers in multiple disputes. Now that he may be entering the MCU, he will likely have a significant role as the multiverse expands and, indeed, unravels. For the lesser knowing fans, we’re here to tell you about the Submariner and give some clues as to what his impact may be in the MCU.


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Namor’s Comic Book Origins

Photo Credit – Marvel Comics

Namor is a sea-dwelling Atlantean introduced in the very first issue of Marvel Comics back in 1939 as one of Marvel’s first superheroes. He’s half-human and half-Atlantean, to be precise. When seeing the blue tint to a full-blooded Atlantean’s skin, one could tell. Namor’s human flesh color comes from his father, Commander Leonard McKenzie, who led a vessel to conduct deep-sea experiments that resulted in the loss of many Atlantean lives. Namor’s mother, Princess Fen, infiltrated McKenzie’s ship to stop his experiments but inexplicably fell in love with the commander. Namor was the child conceived from the affair. This has also earned its distinction as being the first mutant.

His abilities include super-strength, aquatic telepathy, and the ability to control water flow (or aquakinesis). His accolades include having been an Avenger, one of the X-Men, a founding member of the Defenders, and even fighting alongside Captain America in World War II. This fact could come up when Namor appears in film. His most prominent role, of course, is as the king of Atlantis, and he defends his people with fervor. At times, the hero is known to be quick-tempered and proud and is willing to do anything it takes to protect Atlantis, which has put him at odds with other heroes.

He’s not exactly a by-the-book hero like Captain America. His temper and arrogance have earned him his anti-hero status with no scruples against doing anything to achieve his goals, running through anyone that gets in his way. Despite his half-human blood, his fierce dedication to his kingdom has left him with no love for humans. But while his hatred for the surface dwellers used to be more hostile, he has since softened his stance, fighting for and against the mainland in the name of his kingdom and its protection. Despite this, he has maintained his hubris throughout.

Where Does Namor Fit in Black Panther’s World

Photo Credit – Perfect World Pictures, Platinum Dunes, Blumhouse Productions, Man in a Tree Productions

It’s been rumored that Narcos: Mexico star Tenoch Huerta will be playing Namor the Sub-Mariner in the Black Panther sequel, although nothing is confirmed yet. What is known is that he’s rumored to play an unknown antagonist. If he is leading Atlantis against Wakanda, it may be part of a longstanding rivalry between the two nations. Indeed, Atlantis and Wakanda have been at odds in the comics since 1980 with The Defenders # 84. The feud took its deadliest turn in The Avengers vs. The X-Men comic series. He had sided with the X-Men in their conflict with the Avengers. Imbued with the power of the Pheonix Force, he used his aquakinesis to attack Wakanda, the hiding place for the Avengers, by sending a gigantic tsunami at the nation. This resulted in many casualties and prompted Wakanda to war against Atlantis. Unfortunately, this was not the worst of the damage either. T’Challa would lure Namor into a false peace meeting as a distraction while Wakandan forces destroyed Atlantis. With his kingdom ravaged, Namor returned home to find an envoy of Thanos waiting to demand his loyalty to the Mad Titan. With no other choice, Namor did so, but not before lying about the presence of an Infinity Stone in Wakanda, prompting Thanos to attack the already wounded country. While this conflict happened in the comics, it’s only a taste of how bad things could get if the two nations go to war. The two leaders have joined forces as well, although begrudgingly. They notably teamed up to fight Doctor Doom in the Secret Wars series.

Related: Namor the Submariner Easter Egg in Avengers: Endgame Confirmed

Namor’s Possible Impact on the MCU

Photo Credit – Marvel Comics

Namor has so many possibilities in the MCU that it’s both exciting and scary. Assuming that the current Multiverse arc stretches across a decade like the Infinity Saga, then we could see the sea-dweller both help and fight the Avengers. If he does help them, then it may take some convincing from Earth’s Mightiest Heroes to get his cooperation as he may not do so unless it benefits Atlantis. Furthermore, his comic connections to The Fantastic Four and the X-Men could lead to some huge links to both teams. Namor has an on / off friendship with Doctor Doom, who leads a country himself. The Fantastic Four’s legendary nemesis gave the surviving people of Atlantis safe harbor after their homeland was attacked. They have also been enemies as well, however.

With the X-Men waiting to be introduced, and the first mutants rumored to enter the MCU in the next Doctor Strange movie, we may see Namor as well. After all, he is said to be the first mutant, having predated the X-Men who first appeared in 1963. This would tie into his having been a member of the mutant team if the studios go in that direction. This could also lead to more significant conflicts depending on how the current MCU heroes handle the mutant arrival.

Fans probably should not expect a Namor film series, however. While Marvel has the right to introduce the character, Universal owns the solo film rights, much like they do with The Hulk. So unless a deal is struck, we may never see the popular antihero in his own film. That does not mean he will not be a significant force as we advance, though. As the world in the MCU continues to change, there is promise that the King of Atlantis could be a prominent figure in the ever-shifting landscape.

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