Products for Black Panther: Wakanda Forever have confirmed a major change in Namor the Sub-Mariner. Created by writer-artist Bill Everett back in 1939, Namor the Sub-Mariner actually preceded Marvel Comics as a company. Traditionally portrayed as the ruler of Atlantis, Namor finally makes his way to the KVM in Black Panther: Wakanda Forever.
Namor from the MCU, played by Tenoch Huerta, is very different from the comics. While his basic look is close to the Silver Age Namor – green shorts with a gold belt, gold armbands and a lot of skin on display – he also has a ceremonial outfit that is much more unusual. The appearance of the costume looks as if it is somehow connected with the mythology of the Aztecs or Maya, and this idea is confirmed by the costumes of other Atlanteans shown in the trailer. This has led to speculation that Marvel has made major changes to Namor, making him the king of the underwater kingdom off the coast of South America, not Atlantis.
Products for Black Panther: Wakanda Forever confirmed this theory. The Hasbro website is currently accepting pre-orders for items related to “Black Panther: Wakanda Forever,” and the description of the Namor submariner figurine from Marvel Legends shows that he is not the ruler of Atlantis at all. Rather, it reads:
“The ruler of Talokan, an ancient civilization hidden in the depths of the ocean, Namor will stop at nothing to protect his people.”
The change was apparently made so that Namor could not be directly compared to Aquaman from DC, both monarchs of Atlantis in their respective superhero franchises. Marvel has clearly changed the situation by linking Namor to Aztec mythology, a smart move that will give director Ryan Coogler a huge opportunity to show his creative muscles in terms of building a world. The name Talokan comes from the Aztec legend of Tlalocan, a paradise kingdom that was traditionally ruled by the rain god Tlaloc and his consort, the goddess of water Chalchiutlicue; perhaps Namor and Namora act as these two figures.
An interesting question, of course, is whether Namor and Namora are somehow related to the gods themselves. Talokan does exist in the comics, where it serves as home to a group of gods known collectively as Teteo; all members of Teteoh are immortal, possess amazing combat skills and accelerated healing factors. If Namor and the Atlanteans have indeed merged with Teteoh and serve as a pantheon equivalent to the Egyptian gods from Moon Knight, then the Wakandans are in serious danger in Black Panther: Wakanda Forever. It will be interesting to see how these changes will be reflected in the MCU.