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Poor Photoshop job on Black Panther poster has fans dunking on Marvel

Just after that terrible Spider-Man: Homecoming poster

Marvel Studios

Black Panther’s first teaser trailer is set to be released tonight, but right now, the poster that Marvel debuted today it is being torn apart for its poor Photoshop job.

In the poster, seen in full below, T’Challa can be seen sitting upon the throne in Wakanda. The only thing that fans can agree on is that Black Panther, played by Chadwick Boseman, looks absolutely fantastic sitting on the throne in his Vibranium suit. The problem, as many people have pointed out, is the distractingly poor Photoshop work that appears throughout the rest of the poster.

Marvel Studios

This isn’t the first time that Marvel fans have been disappointed with a movie poster. Just a couple of weeks ago, people were left scratching their heads at the busy and confusing poster that the studio released for Spider-Man: Homecoming. The poster for Black Panther is far less busy, but the sentiment among fans is the same: Was this really the best option?

“I know they’re just posters, but wtf is going on with Marvel recently?” one fan posted on the biggest Marvel subreddit. “Between this, that mess of a Spider-Man poster with everyone on it, and (not MCU movie but still kind of counts) the Inhumans reveal and those terrible costumes ... someone needs a talking to.”

Others agreed, but many noted that despite the poster’s lackluster aesthetic, there was no question that Boseman was the best part about it.

“I think I agree with most of the comments so far,” another fan wrote. “Bad photoshop, could be confused with something fanmade, and just bad execution. Great costume and idea though!”

On Twitter, people poked fun at the Black Panther poster, with many of the same sentiments: The idea behind the poster — to focus on T’Challa sitting upon his throne — was great, but the poster failed to execute it well. The main problem, as many people have taken the time to illustrate, is that Boseman’s head seems to be floating on top of his body.

Another interesting aspect of the Black Panther poster is that it shares quite a few similarities with other Marvel designs for its MCU films. The use of gold and black, for example, is very similar to what Marvel went with for Doctor Strange, another movie that exists as part of the MCU’s third phase. When the poster for Doctor Strange was released, however, the reaction from fans was overwhelmingly positive. The difference between the two seemed to come down to how the heroes fit into their backgrounds. Whereas T’Challa sticks out, Doctor Strange seems to blend in.


In an interview with The Verge, professional artist and poster designer Tommy Lee Edwards said the key to a good poster is reflecting what makes the movie special. If you just focus on a big head, he said in reference to Homecoming, than that takes away from the unique aspect of the film, and people can see through that.

“I feel like the poster should honor that time and love that went into this piece of art. If a poster can show what that movie is about, rather than a big actor’s head, I think that’s a really important thing,” Edwards said. “So the genre, the tone, the kind of story. Not every poster has to be a montage of elements, but when you do those kinds of posters, they can be done really, really well.”

This is only the first poster for Black Panther, however, and Marvel will release more in the coming months. The first few posters for Spider-Man: Homecoming were well-received; it was only the most recent one that saw blowback from the community over the design.

With San Diego Comic-Con and Disney’s D23 conference just around the corner, prepare for more Black Panther artwork, posters and footage. The first teaser for Black Panther will debut tonight during the Game 4 of the NBA Finals between the Golden State Warriors and Cleveland Cavaliers.

Black Panther will be released on Feb. 16, 2018.

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