What the Black Panther End Credits Scenes Mean for the MCU
Now that everyone has had adequate time to see Black Panther, let’s discuss those two end credit scenes and what they mean going forward.
The first shows T’Challa addressing the United Nations and explaining that Wakanda will no longer keep to itself and will instead share its resources with the world. When a foreign ambassador asks what a country like Wakanda can possible offer the rest of the world, T’Challa simply smiles. This may very well be a scene from Avengers: Infinity Warand has lasting implications on the MCU.
Wakanda will no longer be a hidden gem as the world will know the depth of its wealth and technological advancement. Wakanda may become the leading supplier of the world’s weapons tech going forward if Tony Stark exits the MCU in the next couple years.
This scene may also be significant in that T’Challa’s proclamation may draw the attention of Thanos. We know Thanos will attack Wakanda Infinity War. What is it that he wants? The soul stone is the most logical conclusion. Now that Wakanda will no longer be hidden from the world, look for a direct consequence of T’Challa’s decision to draw Thanos to his homeland.
The second scene was what all of us were waiting for (or at least I was). Despite denials from Marvel, Bucky does indeed make an appearance. A group of Wakandan children awaken him and are ushered away by Shuri, but not before the children refer to him as “White Wolf”.
In the comics, White Wolf was a man named Hunter who became T’Challa’s adopted brother. Look for Bucky to take on that role and possibly play a larger role in future Black Panther films. It would be a creative way to link the new generation of heroes to the old guard.
Shuri referenced Bucky earlier in the film when Everett Ross is brought to her after being shot and she calls him “Another white boy for me to fix”. It also appears that Shuri has made a lot of progress in removing Bucky’s Hydra brainwashing, though the job isn’t fully complete as she tells him he still has a lot to learn.
Was the White Wolf comment just an obscure easter egg? Possibly. At the end of Captain America: Civil War Bucky was seen wearing a white shirt as he was being put to sleep. When we see him at the end of Black Panther, he’s wearing red and blue. Could the red, white and blue theme be a signal that he’ll be the next Cap once Steve Rogers is out of the picture? Marvel does seem to be laying some groundwork for that, in addition to Bucky using Cap’s shield a few times in the MCU, but I still tend to think Sam Wilson will take over the mantle, allowing Bucky to serve by T’Challa’s side as White Wolf. It’s the best way to keep both characters prominent in the MCU. Best of both worlds!
Of course, we know from the Infinity War trailer that Bucky is fighting right alongside the other heroes in Wakanda. I always thought we’d at least get a glimpse of him before that, and that end credits scene was a huge payoff.