An Ode to Namor’s Ankle Wings
Fly my pretties, fly!
Black Panther: Wakanda Forever has smashed into theaters and with it an exciting new… supervillain? Anti-hero? Aqua-hottie? That’s right I’m talking about Tenoch Huerta’s powerful superhuman character, Namor.
Namor (also known as the Sub-mariner) has been a popular character in Marvel comics, going all the way back to his first introduction in 1939. At one point described as “The First Mutant,” Namor is the ruler of the Talokan (or Atlantis in the comics) and has been both a foe and an ally (depending on his mood) to groups like the X-Men, The Fantastic Four, and even The Avengers. He’s strong, he’s shirtless, he’s in a speedo, and most importantly, he always has those cute little wings on his ankles.
Which is what brings us here today! Because the wings, they are perfect. In the comics, the wings represent his mutant ability to fly and when he loses the wings he loses flight. They feel more symbolic and mystical than actual appendages capable of lifting a human body and propelling it through the air.
But delightfully, Ryan Coogler and the MCU said “suck it physics, those bad boys are going to flap!” And so for Namor’s screen time in the two-hour and forty-minute feature, they do. They flippity-flap and hum and buzz like little hummingbird wings and I love it with my whole soul. Namor is able to not only swim faster than a torpedo but he also flies with a speed and agility comparable to Superman (oops wrong cinematic universe!) and it is all thanks to those flippy-flappies.
Those lil appendages move Namor’s big muscly body around without a care in the world, defying gravity, biology, and logic. A visual homage to both the greek god Hermes and the golden snitch. They are both beautiful and absurd. They are fun and extremely impractical. They are the representation of everything I love about superhero comics and I love that they were included in his big-screen debut.
So three cheers for Namor’s ankle wings! Science might say they shouldn’t exist, but then again, science says bumble bees shouldn’t be able to fly either. So there.
What is your favorite part of Black Panther: Wakanda Forever?
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