The Marvel Universe is just insanely impressive when it comes to the number of intriguing superheroes it has to offer. The perfect example of that comes with two characters in Black Panther and Wolverine. They are two of the more popular characters around these days, and each one is incredibly unique, with storylines that differ greatly from one another while still providing plenty of amazing villains and interesting plots to follow. The two characters don’t interact a ton in the comics, but they are very similar in many ways.
I’ve been a Wolverine fan ever since I started playing the X-Men video games as a kid, and that quickly led me to discover the endless amount of comics that featured him as well. Black Panther, I didn’t get exposed to as much, but I always thought the costume was awesome looking and was always curious about what there was to learn about the character as well. Wolverine was definitely the more popular character when I was growing up, but due to his place in the MCU, Black Panther’s popularity has skyrocketed, becoming one of the most well-known names in all of media nevermind superhero culture.
The two superheroes are armed with similar weapons, such as the adamantium claws for Wolverine and the Vibranium claws for Black Panther, but they also have a ton that is fully unique about them as well. We’re going to explore everything there is to know about Black Panther vs Wolverine.
The Main Differences Between Wolverine and Black Panther
There are tons of things that set the two iconic superheroes apart from one another, so let’s check out what they are.
- Wolverine uses Adamantium claws and has an Adamantium skeleton as well, while Black Panther uses claws that are made of Vibranium and has a suit made out of Vibranium too.
- Wolverine is part of the X-Men, while Black Panther is part of The Avengers
- Wolverine often fights for himself, while Black Panther is the King of Wakanda and most of his fights are for the good of his people.
- Black Panther wears an all-black suit so that he can camouflage with the night easier, while Wolverine typically wears a bright yellow or orange costume that shows no need to blend in with his background at all.
- Wolverine’s powers are limited to his strength alone, while Black Panther is aided by Wakandan technology that allows him to channel kinetic force into his attacks and unleash them in a highly explosive fashion.
- Wolverine has the ability to self-heal, curing him of pretty much any wound, while Black Panther is just a man underneath, although one that has been superpowered by ingesting the sacred heart-shaped herb from his ancestors, so he can heal himself a bit faster than most humans can. Vibranium also can be used to heal, so having access to it helps him heal as well.
- Wolverine prefers to work alone, despite being part of the X-Men, while Black Panther has fought side by side with many characters over the years, including The Avengers as well as White Wolf.
- Wolverine fights primarily with his claws out, while Black Panther fights hand to hand much of the time and then activates his claws when needed.
- Wolverine is essentially ageless, while Black Panther ages at a normal rate.
- Wolverine has fought all over the world and fought countless types of villains, while Black Panther has fought a much smaller amount of villains and generally takes jurisdiction over the land unless called upon by The Avengers.
- Wolverine was born a mutant, while Black Panther had to gain it through a ritual and through the use of his suit.
- Healing Factor allows him to heal from pretty much any wound, no matter how harsh the damage. He has even managed to regenerate organs that have been damaged in a fight, and it makes him one of the toughest superheroes to kill.
- Adamantium skeleton following the weapon X procedure gives him a nearly indestructible body, allowing him to perform massive feats of strength that outdo most superheroes in the Marvel universe.
- Adamantium claws allow him to rip through just about any material in the universe, making him one of the most deadly superheroes in existence, and he has no qualms about using them.
- Superhuman senses and tracking abilities make him an excellent detective, allowing him to track any prey he’s after.
- His superhuman healing power keeps him young, and because of this, he’s survived for 100-plus years and fought through multiple wars in the process.
- Heightened reflexes give him a huge advantage in combat, attacking in the blink of an eye while evading most attacks, regardless of who he’s facing.
- Vibranium claws let him shred through anything. Although not as strong as Adamantium, it still is a brutal form of attack.
- The most skilled hand-to-hand combatant on earth, T’challa is unmatched when it comes to a close-quarters fight.
- Healing factor granted by both the sacred herd and vibranium gives him the ability to heal after battles faster than most heroes.
- Vibranium-laden suit protects him from bullets and blades and can absorb the impact of taking heavy blows, making him a tough combatant to take out of the fight.
- Vibranium suit absorbs kinetic energy, with can be released in a massive force, blowing away any enemy in the vicinity. It can also charge daggers with kinetic energy to create dangerous projectiles.
- Access to Wakandan technology gives Black Panther tons of unique gadgets and weapons to use in battle.
- Superhuman strength and athletic ability gives him a huge edge in battle; he is often able to flip around the battlefield and get the jump on his opponents without them having a chance to defend.
- Teleporting allows Black Panther to literally vanish into thin air. This comes into play multiple times when Black Panther is looking to get an edge in battle or has to escape.
- Necromancy. Yup, Black Panther can raise the dead, and he does this by controlling the spirits of fall Wakandan warriors. One of the darker powers for sure, Black Panther only uses this when absolutely needed.
- Wolverine is pretty tough to beat in battle, but if you’re going to start somewhere, it’s with his skeleton. He is made of metal, and that means a few things. One, electricity can damage him, so any villain with that power or those near a power line might want to use that in a fight with Wolverine. Two, one of his biggest rivals, Magneto, has the ability to control metal and is a nightmare for Wolverine to fight against because of it. Thanos also used this weakness against Wolverine in their fight and used the Infinity Gauntlet to turn his bones to rubber, instantly destroying him in the process, though he would be revived later.
- Water. Believe it or not, a man-made entirely of metal doesn’t fare all that well. We saw this in action in X-Men: Days of Future’s past when Magneto ensnared him in metal and threw him into a river. Other villains have used water against Wolverine as well, and it’s because his Healing Factor doesn’t do anything when he’s submerged.
- The Muramasa Blade is another weakness of Wolverine. The first one is wielded by The Black Knight, Dane Whitman, but the second one was designed for Wolverine by Muramasa himself. Wolverine is terrified of the blade because it’s indestructible and rivals his claws.
- Carbonadium is a material created by the USSR to rival Wolverine’s Adamantium and one of Wolverine’s fiercest enemies; Omega Red wields it with his metal coils. It carries a unique ability to cancel out the healing Factor in Wolverine and makes it his biggest weakness.
- Adamantium. Although Wolverine is made of it, it’s actually the substance that ends up killing him in the comics. Overexposure to the chemical can prove fatal and the movies explored this in X-Men 2: Mutants United when Wolverine jabbed Lady Deathstrike with the Adamantium injector and filled her entire body with it.
- He’s not a mutant. Yes, T’challa is superpowered with the suit on, but aside from that and some boosted strength and healing from a magical herb, he’s just a human, and there were many Black Panthers before him and will be many after him. He’s not immortal and is vulnerable outside the suit.
- Electricity. Just like Wolverine, the metal surging through Black Panther’s suit can be used against him as well. Although he can absorb energy and project it, he cannot do the same with electricity.
- Pride. As the king of Wakanda, Black Panther is often tasked with defending and caring for his people, regardless of the cost. This has led him to have tunnel vision at times and put his people in more danger because of it.
- Magic. In the Marvel universe, there are a handful of beings that can use magic abilities, and when it comes to facing off against one of these characters, such as Thanos with the Infinity Gauntlet, for example, not even Vibranium protection can help.
The Men Behind the Mask
Wolverine aka Logan
Logan is one of the longest-running characters in comics, and because of that, he’s had a few different backstories over the years, but one of the things that stays constant is that he’s one of the only superheroes from Canada. Wolverine was born James Howlett but later took on the name Logan after working in a mining colony.
He has one of the more tragic backstories; he is the son of John and Elizabeth Howlett and has a brother named Dog. His father, John, attempts to molest his brother, and in response, Logan kills John, unleashing his class for the first time. He then runs away with a childhood friend and accidentally kills her as well. This leads him to join a traveling circus where he is captive and treated as a freakshow object. He eventually escapes and finds solace again before another tragedy strikes him and his native American lover named Silver Fox. From there, he joins the military and spends years fighting.
Logan is one of the more standoffish characters in all of Marvel. He’s pretty much allergic to showing his emotions around most people and is amongst the more prickly pears in the X-Men when it comes to making friends. He’s notorious for being sarcastic and rude in the most mundane situations, and a lot of it can be attributed to his time in the Weapon X Program.
This is the moment that shaped him the most when he joined Team X and was experimented on with the now-famous Adamantium that coats his bones. He escapes the program and starts working for the government in Canada, and it is there where Wolverine is truly born as Canada’s top superhero.
Shortly after that, Charles Xavier discovers him, and the rest is X-Men history.
Although he’s tough to get through to, Wolverine has managed to team up with plenty of people in the Marvel universe, including Captain America, Spider-Man, and my personal favorite, with Deadpool. He’s one of the most iconic superheroes in existence, and his backstory is endlessly intriguing regardless of who is behind the writing of a particular comic he’s in.
Black Panther, aka King T’challa
T’challa is one of the more interesting superheroes out there because while many of them might be super strong and have legions of supporters, very few of them are actual kings of entire countries. That is the weight that is given to T’challa from the get-go, and the mantle of Black Panther has been worn by many before him as well. T’challa has interesting ties to the X-Men as well, as before he was officially the king of Wakanda, he fell in love with a girl by the name of Ororo Munroe, who became the all-powerful Omega-level mutant known as Storm. She would leave the country and join the X-Men, but T’challa’s love for her would not wane.
When Black Panther first jumped into the comics, he invites the Fantastic Four to Wakanda, which marks one of the only invitations the outside world gets to such an incredible place due to their secrecy from the world. After engaging them in a fight to test himself to see if he’s ready to battle his arch-nemesis, Klaw, he quickly becomes friends with them and realizes that not all of the outside world is there to steal their technology and ruin their civilization.
This realization leads T’challa to The Avengers, where he would become particularly close with Captain America due to each bearing the enormous weight of a country’s protection and pride on their soldiers. He would become a staple of The Avengers, which makes sense considering weapons such as Captain America’s shield is made out of the very same Vibranium that Black Panther’s suit is made out of. After joining The Avengers, Black Panther would leave Wakanda for the first time and become part of the team while also leading his people to embrace the larger world.
Black Panther has one of the more unique stories in the comic book world. It’s one that is both culturally relevant regardless of the year you read his comics and has actually been the inspiration for several other stories, including one that we know very well in pop culture, The Lion King.
Have Black Panther and Wolverine Ever Met?
Black Panther and Wolverine have met several times as in recent years, Black Panther has branched out more into other comics, and seeing as X-Men’s number one warrior is Wolverine, they have interacted quite a few times. Although most of the time it’s been friendly, there has been one occasion where the two of them threw down against each other.
Notable Fights, Wins, and Losses
As one of the most powerful beings in the universe, Thanos posed quite a problem for many characters in the Marvel world, and one of those was Wolverine. Wolverine took on the Mad Titan during a fierce fight that also had Thor and the Hulk involved. Logan attempted to stab him through the chest and actually lands his strike, but Thanos isn’t an ordinary villain and takes the hit. He responds by using the Infinity Gauntlet to turn Wolverine’s Adamantium bones into rubber, killing him instantly in one of the most gruesome and disturbing images in comic book history.
The Incredible Hulk
It’s not exactly shameful to be beaten by Hulk, considering he’s possibly the most powerful superhero ever. Regardless, The Hulk doesn’t just beat Wolverine; he obliterated him. In one fight, Hulk literally rips Wolverine in half, leaving him to have to find his legs in order to heal, but it got even worse for Wolvie as he had his head removed from his body as well. He’s also been eaten by The Hulk as well, although he managed to survive this by healing inside his body and slashing his way out of The Hulk’s stomach but still….yikes.
Although they’ve been allies a ton, Wolverine and Captain America have fought many times, and much of the time, Captain America wins. Most of the fights involve Wolverine being brainwashed or mind-controlled, but even still, Cap has managed to win the majority of these. The most prominent victory came when Wolverine was fighting Captain America while under mind control from an unknown villain, and Cap’s investigation led him right to the possessed Logan. The two had a brutal fight where Cap tried to reason with him but ultimately had to beat him down with his shield until a group of approaching villains sent Cap off and running, leaving Logan unconscious in his wake.
See also: Deadpool vs Wolverine
This is amongst the most tragic moments ever depicted in comic panels, but Wolverine managed to defeat the entirety of the X-Men during the plot of Old Man Logan. He is tricked by Mysterio into thinking the X-Men are his enemies, and Wolverine murders every last one of them. This storyline was tweaked for the movie Logan, where it is actually Professor X that loses control and accidentally kills all the X-Men due to his lack of control over his powers in his old age.
In another tragic battle, Wolverine has actually battled and killed Jean Grey a few times before. Jean Grey, in her Phoenix form, is amongst the most terrifying forces in the galaxy, and still, Wolverine managed to kill her even despite his undying love for her.
One of the more unique fights Wolverine has had was with Venom. Both these characters are tough to kill, and while Wolverine didn’t kill Venom, he certainly beat him all over the place during a fight in the bar. This was when Venom was a villain and had no idea who Wolverine was, so Wolverine was easily able to withstand his attacks and strength and shred the symbiote up for all he was worth.
Black Panther Losses
Just as it happens in the movies, Killmonger actually defeated T’challa and won the right to become the next king of Wakanda. Their fight was a brutal one which ended just as it did in the Black Panther movie, with T’challa being thoroughly beaten and then thrown off of a cliff. The fight is an intense one because it is the clash of two ideals as T’Challa seeks to keep Wakanda hidden from the world while Killmonger wants to use the technology to help out African Americans who have lived hard lives.
Kraven the Hunter’s Son
Kraven the Hunter has always been one of the most interesting villains out there and prides himself on catching the big game. Well, his son is no different, and when he set his sights on Black Panther, the fight was a beatdown of epic proportions, and he bagged himself one of the greatest heroes in the Marvel universe.
The Fantastic Four
It was more of a test of his strength so that he could fight other villains, but Black Panther took on all four members of the Fantastic Four and almost came out the victor. Ultimately, the Fantastic Four wins the fight combining to deliver a winning strike, and afterward, Black Panter explained he was merely testing himself, and the group was shortly thereafter welcomed into Wakanda.
Black Panther Wins
Although they have been allies for years, one particular plotline had Black Panther and Iron Man throwing down. To show the ultimate sign of respect to Black Panther, Iron Man created a special armor just for the fight, but due to Black Panther’s ferocity and willingness to kill a fellow hero, Iron Man was completely overwhelmed and unprepared for the attacks that Black Panther unleashed.
Black Panther has the unique honor of being one of the only characters to defeat both leaders of the Avengers. In the Civil War storyline, allegiances were uncertain across the hero world, and that led to Cap and T’Challa having a showdown. The two are extremely similar fighters, but Black Panther’s insane athleticism and overwhelming tech were more than enough to put Captain America down for the count. Afterward, the two reconciled and have rekindled their long-lasting friendship.
This fight showed the lengths Black Panther is willing to go to in order to get the job done. Namor had killed tons o people in Wakanda during a storyline where he was possessed by the Phoenix, aka the same force that takes Jean Grey on occasion, and this led to Black Panther hunting him down and beating the life out of him before leaving him on a soon to explode planet. Although you don’t see the brutal side come out of T’Challa very often, here it was on full display.
Who Would Win in a Fight?
These are two of the more skilled combatants in the Marvel universe, and their abilities are extremely similar as well. Let’s see what each would have to do to win in a fight.
How Could Wolverine Win?
If Wolverine’s healing Factor is working, then he’s pretty tough to deal with. Even seemingly fatal blows would not stop him as he could just recover, so with that in mind, Wolverine would be able to go on the full offensive against Black Panther, who’s Vibranium suit would do little to stop Wolverine’s Adamantium claws and overwhelming strength.
Wolverine also has no qualms about holding back in a fight, and I don’t think T’challa could handle that combination of power, ferocity, and determination.
How Could Black Panther Win?
T’challa is known as the best hand-to-hand combatant in the world, and that would certainly give him an edge here. Combine that with his ability to absorb kinetic energy, and he could theoretically withstand Wolverine’s attacks and throw them back at him. His Vibrainum claws would come in handy, too, as Wolverine’s flesh is very vulnerable even though the Adamantium skeleton beneath would stay sturdy throughout.
T’challa would have to be relentless in his assault, attacking Wolverine from multiple angles and refusing to give him a moment to breath to use his healing Factor. Using water against Wolverine would work in his favor, so fighting near a body of water in Wakanda could give him the final edge in this fight.
The Winner: Black Panther
This fight actually happened in the comics though it was in peculiar circumstances. Logan was without his healing Factor and went into a blind berserker rage after T’challa riled him up by mentioning Storm, who was Logan’s ex at the time. The result was a thorough victory by Black Panther, although if the fight was against Wolverine at full strength and sound mind, I think the outcome would result in Wolverine coming out on top due to his ability to withstand any beating Black Panther is capable of dishing out.
Did you know that Wolverine is only 5’3? In the movies, Hugh Jackman plays Wolverine, and he’s a very tall man standing at 6’4, but in the comics, Wolvie is just an angry little man, but his low center of gravity helps him a ton in combat scenarios.
Did you know Wolverine was possessed by the Phoenix? During one storyline, the Phoenix entity resurrects Logan and makes him one of the most powerful beings in the universe. He uses this power to defeat Old King Thor.
Did you know that Wolverine has a son? Wolverine has a long-lost son named Daken, who eventually appears to confront his father years later.
Did you know that Black Panther initially changed his name to Black Leopard after the writers didn’t want to confuse him with the Black Panther party? It eventually went back to Black Panther as it was explained in the comics as being as dumb as Scarlet Witch changing her name to get away from negative connotations of Witches.
Did you know that Black Panther barely ever loses? He’s had a few losses for sure, but on the whole, it is very tough to take down the king of Wakanda, and he has some of the least defeats of any comic book character out there.
Did you know that T’challa isn’t the only Black Panther? The Mantle has been passed down from king to king throughout the ages, suggesting there have been many before him.
Question: Has Wolverine ever died?
Answer: He has died multiple times, but the only seemingly permanent one was during Old Man Logan, where he dies from Adamantium hardening his insides.
Question: Has Black Panther ever died?
Answer: In the comics, Killmonger kills T’challa during a plot by Storm.
Question: Is Wolverine the leader of the X-Men?
Answer: Although he’s one of the strongest, Wolverine is not the leader of the X-Men, as that duty falls to Cyclops.
Question: Is Black Panther a mutant?
Answer: Mutants are generally classified as those born with the power, so considering T’challa was born a normal man, he is not a mutant.
I hope you enjoyed running through the history of these two amazing and iconic characters with me, and it helped you get to know them better in the process. These are two characters that will be around forever, and for those just discovering them, you have tons and tons of material to enjoy.