Namor actor Tenoch Huerta shared his reaction to his Black Panther: Wakanda Forever character's on-screen bulge being digitally altered for the film's release.
Huerta's Talokanil King made his MCU debut in the Black Panther sequel, quickly becoming one of the fans' favorite villains in franchise history.
This version of the character seen on screen is pretty faithful to the source material, sporting "unique features" like his signature trunks and winged feet for the entire film. However, one change was made from what the character looked like while filming to what ended up on the silver screen.
Since Black Panther 2's release, eagle-eyed fans have noticed that the bulge in Namor's swim trunks is much smaller than in the trailers leading up to the film.
It is unknown why this peculiar edit was made, but now, days after the viral tweet pointing out the change took off, Namor actor Tenoch Huerta has commented on Bulge-Gate 2022.
Tenoch Huerta and the Case of the Shrinking Bulge
Speaking with Rolling Stone, Black Panther: Wakanda Forever actor Tenoch Huerta spoke on the recently-spotted change made to the bulge at the front of his character's swim trunks in the MCU film.
The Namor actor laughed when asked about it, telling the outlet that the photo "without [the bulge]" was actually the original:
"[Laughs] The only thing that I can say is: the original was the photo on the right. Without [the bulge]! That’s original. No, I mean, I’m not going to lie to people. Every man in the world, we have fragile masculinity, but not in that issue. I will say, the right one, the real one is the photo on the right."
Huerta also addressed what it was like wearing so little for the entire run of the movie and the fact that he may need to stay in shape in case Marvel comes calling again, a problem he is not the first MCU actor to bring up.
He said "I can’t cut off my amount of tacos from now on," remembering that his trainer had told him he can now rest, but "not too much," because if he has to play Namor again he would "need to go through the same process" he just went through to reach his fitness level for Wakanda Forever:
"Concerned! I actually worry about it. No, it’s a big problem, man. I can’t cut off my amount of tacos from now on. But, yeah, it’s funny. I don’t know. It’s something that my trainer told me. “Okay, man, now you can rest, you can chill and take your time. But not too much, because if you have to play Namor one more time, you need to go through the same process all over again. So it’s better you take care of yourself and don’t get crazy with tacos.”
Is Tenoch Huerta Telling the Bulging Truth?
From this interview, it is actually hard to glean if, in fact, Marvel sized the Namor actor up or down for the final film. The general consensus was that the studio humbled him a bit by toning down the trouser bulge.
But if Huerta is to be believed, they actually ended up using original footage in the final cut, meaning the character was made to look larger in trailers and marketing material.
It does seem like the MCU rookie answers the question in jest a bit though and knows what is going on below his waistline. But perhaps he is still a little camera shy when asked point-blank like he was here.
Audiences may never know the answer to what exactly happened to Namor's trunks in the translation from the trailer to the big screen. Perhaps fans will have to wait until the inevitable Disney+ release of the film to get a true HD side-by-side.
Tenoch Huerta's Namor (and his bulge) can be seen in Black Panther: Wakanda Forever, which is playing in theaters now.