Students rush to see ‘Black Panther’

Brian Lang

The smell of popcorn and hum of a crowd filled the Wichita Falls Cinemark Friday, Feb. 16 as the community congregated to see Marvel’s newest superhero movie, “Black Panther.”

While people waited in line, many wore African style clothing along with Marvel attire and discussed their excitement for the film. The anticipation was electrifying throughout the theater, and about 30 people met with the Black Student Union and the Office of Equity, Inclusion and Multicultural Affairs at the 10:30 p.m. showing of “Black Panther” to witness the premiere of this historic installment in the Marvel Cinematic Universe with the inclusive cast.

The about 200 seats of the theater were filled, and to further the Marvel saturation of the night, a preview to the new “Avengers: Infinity War” played before the screening, and Ben Colvin, chemistry freshman, said he was glad to have events like the meet-up to get students out-and-about in the community doing fun things.

“I’m interested in the MCU, and I wanted to see the preview for ‘Avengers: Infinity War,'” Colvin said. “I would like to go to more events like this off campus if they were just for MSU students for college prices, like Target night.”

During the beginning of the semesters, University Programming Board members and Resident Hall Association members will host a variety of events like late night bowling and Target nights for students to have fun and create community involvement.

According to Colvin, “Black Panther” was a great movie in itself and the themes, motifs and conversations bred out of the film encourage discussions on relevant topics today.

“It was a pretty good movie, the storyline was, overall, very good,” Colvin said. “It showed a strong sense of family while acknowledging real-world problems. It had a sense of oppression and perseverance through real-life obstacles.”  

According to Savannah Rodriguez, biology freshman, she went to the movie because her friends went.

Haskell Hollier, mass communication sophomore, who said he is a “big nerd” when it comes to Marvel, plans to see Panther a second time because of how good it was.

“The movie did really well with establishing everybody’s character. The character development, Micheal B. Jordan, his role as a villain, I haven’t seen that good of villain since Heath Ledger’s Joker,” Hollier said.

Kendall Ogletree, criminal justice junior, also wanted to see the movie because of its representation and that he has never seen a black super hero before.

“It’s Black History Month right now and I saw how the movie took place in Africa, and I was really interested in it,” Ogletree said. “And Michael B. Jordan, he’s one of my favorite actors so that’s another reason why I wanted to see it.”

Hollier also said he liked the film’s representation of African culture and how it was not white washed.

“You know the movie ‘The Great Wall’ with Matt Damon. He’s a Caucasian actor, but he’s playing an asian role,” Hollier said “Also, even though Wakanda is like an advanced technological city, they still didn’t just rule out all the African culture. They still have African culture. You can see it even though the city is advanced, they still go back to those types of old day, so they didn’t really lose their traditions.”

Additional reporting by Kristin Silva and Chloe Phillips.