#ComicBytes: The 'Marvel'ous country of Wakanda
Wakanda, Marvel's fictional sub-Saharan country is the home of Black Panther. The character was always a D-list seller in the comics with very little licensing power. But ironically, Black Panther became one of the highest-grossing Marvel Cinematic Universe movies. Apart from being a cultural phenomenon, the movie brought Wakanda to our screens. Read ahead to learn more about this beautiful fictional nation.
Comic origins: The reason why Wakanda come into existence
To address the dearth of black characters in comics, Stan Lee and Jack Kirby created T'Challa, a member of the royal family of the fictional African country of Wakanda. Wakanda debuted as an African nation that was a unique mix of futuristic technology and traditional life. The entire existence of Wakanda revolves around the presence of vibranium, a rare and indestructible meteoric ore.
The Gods and cults of Wakanda
Wakanda worships Bast, the Panther Goddess responsible for the creation of the Black Panther; Kokou, the God of war; Mujaji, the God of hunger; Thoth, the God of light and reason; and Ptah, the God of metal alloys, mainly vibranium. Together, they are known as the Orisha. Wakanda also has four cults named Panther, Lion, Crocodile, and the infamous White Gorilla, which M'Baku followed.
Wakanda has a strong education system
Along with advancements in health and technology (as seen in MCU), Wakanda has a high literacy rate. After completing 11 years of education, citizens choose their career paths and take necessary classes for free at one of its universities. If not scholarly education, they can be trained in labor-focused fields. Wakanda also has the Wakandan School for Alternative Studies for people with meta-human abilities.
The defense system of Wakanda is spectacular
Wakanda is an advanced and fully-equipped military power comprising army, naval and air forces. The king is protected by Dora Milaje, a group of skilled female warriors. Wakanda had its own intelligence agency called N'Charu Silema, which was later developed into Princess Regent Intelligence Division Executives (P.R.I.D.E.). The Hatut Zeraze (Dogs of War), the nation's former secret police, also continues to operate covertly.
The core of it all, Vibranium
Fundamental to Wakanda's self-sufficiency is vibranium, the strongest metal in the world. Wakanda is the only country on Earth to have this meteoric ore that can absorb kinetic energy and release it later. The near-inexhaustible supply of it has made Wakanda the most technologically advanced nation on Earth. Since it is rarely exported, Wakanda has successfully avoided the depletion of its resources.