As the MCU prepares to revisit the story of Black Panther and the world of Wakanda, it's important to reflect on the story so far. Even though things will be drastically different this time around as Chadwick Boseman's T'Challa is tragically absent, there will be many continuing stories and returning characters.
Despite this only being the second solo dive into the world of Wakanda, the fictional African nation has been proving essential to the MCU across the board ever since it was first formally mentioned in Avengers: Age of Ultron as the heroes went after arms dealer Ulysses Klaue.
So, with Wakanda Forever just days away from finally arriving in theaters, here are the five MCU projects that are most likely to impact the sequel - all of which can be streamed now on Disney+.
5 MCU Movies & Shows to Watch Before Black Panther 2
1.) Captain America: Civil War
After Andy Serkis' Klaue brought Wakanda into the MCU in Avengers: Age of Ultron, Black Panther finally entered the fray with Captain America: Civil War. As King T'Chaka met his demise at the hands of the Winter Soldier, by way of the villainous Zemo, the journey of Chadwick Boseman's T'Challa was kicked into gear.
This saw the Wakandan Prince seek revenge against his father's killer, fight alongside Team Iron Man while meeting the Avengers for the first time, and prepare to ascend to the throne. Ultimately, Civil War serves as something of a prequel to Black Panther and thus an important watch in T'Challa's story.
Take a look at Black Panther's Civil War suit in Marvel's Avengers game.
2.) Black Panther
Obviously, Black Panther is essential for viewing ahead of watching Wakanda Forever as the journey of these characters continues. With Chadwick Boseman's T'Challa tragically gone, the Wakandans who surrounded him in the first film will now step to the forefront, making this the most important watch of all.
Throughout this MCU flick, fans learn all about T'Challa, Shuri, Nakia, Okoye, and Ramonda, all of which will have great influence over the sequel. Beyond that, Wakanda itself sees plenty of development as audiences begin to understand the unique culture and systems that will continue to be of importance going forward.
3.) Avengers: Infinity War
Once Civil War and Black Panther collectively saw Wakanda open up to the world and its heroes, Avengers: Infinity War took the fight against Thanos to the African nation. Not only did Wakanda prove to be the battleground for the fight, but T'Challa was really the one to lead the conflict before eventually being snapped.
While Okoye also got involved in the battle, perhaps the most interesting development that Infinity War brings is for Shuri. As the Princess leads the efforts to remove the Mind Stone from Vision, this may be the greatest showcase of her genius ahead of stepping into the leading role for Wakanda Forever.
Watch Captain America and Black Panther fight side-by-side in Avengers: Infinity War behind-the-scenes footage.
4.) Avengers: Endgame
There may not be too much Wakandan action involved in Avengers: Endgame, but there are several moments of notable importance. In the absence of T'Challa and Shuri, Okoye leads relations with the Avengers and mentions an "earthquake under the ocean," perhaps giving the first tease of Black Panther 2 villain Namor.
Ultimately, T'Challa and Shuri return by the end to join the final fight against Thanos but get too much to do here. What's most important is that this marks their return from The Blip and sets up the Wakandan royal family being reunited peacefully - something which will soon be uprooted.
5.) The Falcon and the Winter Soldier
After surfacing in the cliffhanger ending of Episode 3, Ayo brings the Dora Milaje into The Falcon and the Winter Soldier on the hunt for Zemo. The group doesn't get too much to do in the series aside from a tangle with Sam Wilson, Bucky Barnes, John Walker, and Lemar Hoskins which only leads to Zemo's escape.
Eventually, the Dora Milaje assisted in escorting Zemo to the Raft after his capture before encouraging Bucky to steer clear of Wakanda. This perhaps marks the most prominent appearance of Ayo in the MCU ahead of her taking a larger role in Wakanda Forever.
Find out more about Ayo's role in Black Panther 2, which will include being in an LGBTQIA+ relationship.
BONUS.) What If...?
What If...? may not quite be essential viewing ahead of Black Panther 2 as it takes place in a branched timeline, but it does tell a unique story with Chadwick Boseman's MCU hero. So, while his installment (Episode 2) may not be connected storywise, it will only add to fans' connection to and understanding of T'Challa.
Discover how Chadwick Boseman planned for his What If...? story to influence the Black Panther sequel.
Black Panther: Wakanda Forever hits theaters on Friday, November 11.