It has been four years since Black Panther premiered, and the world is still waiting for more news regarding the sequel and how it would deal with Chadwick Boseman’s death. While there haven’t been any official details about the movie, rumors about the possibility of Tepeyollotl appearing in the movie surfaced all over the internet when photos of crew merch were leaked. But who is Tepeyollotl in the upcoming Black Panther sequel?
Tepeyollotl is the Aztec jaguar god that could serve as the patron god that the Marvel version of the Atlanteans serve. As such, Tepeyollotl could be used for Namor’s MCU introduction. In that regard, this feline god could be the counterpart of the Wakandans’ Bast, the patron panther god that they worship.
At this point, we don’t have a lot of information regarding who Tepeyollotl is because of the fact that this is an entirely new character in the MCU. Nevertheless, Aztec gods were never new in Marvel because there have been a few of them that appeared in the comics. So, with that said, let’s take a look at what information we have regarding Tepeyollotl and the Aztec gods.
Who is Tepeyollotl In Black Panther 2?
Marvel Studios’ slate for 2022 and 2023 is pretty full, considering that there will be a lot of different MCU movies and shows that will be released during that span. And one of the most anticipated Marvel movies over the past few years is the sequel to Black Panther, which was released in 2018.
Unlike most of the other Marvel movies which people seem to know more in relation to what will happen to their stories in their future installments, Black Panther seems to be different. Ever since Chadwick Boseman’s death in 2020, the direction of the Black Panther movie franchise seems to be something that not a lot of people can predict, considering that the main actor had died and that Marvel Studios has no plans of replacing the actor for T’Challa. This leads us to wonder what Black Panther 2 will be all about.
In relation to that, Marvel seems to be a bit too silent regarding the direction of Black Panther 2 and what it will be all about. Not a lot of people know what the movie will be all about because of how silent Marvel Studios execs and employees are in relation to the upcoming movies. However, leaks can happen here and there.
That is exactly what happened with Black Panther 2, as a leak of the merchandise that the crew of the movie would be wearing has been making rounds all over social media. And the most interesting part of that leak is the cap.
While the Wakanda Forever logo and the Wakandan lettering on the jacket aren’t that surprising, the most surprising part about the crew wrap gifts is the cap, which doesn’t feature anything that’s close to Wakandan. In fact, the feline creature that is adorned with a colorful headdress seems to resemble Tepeyollotl. But who exactly is Tepeyollotl in Black Panther 2?
Tepeyollotl is the Aztec jaguar god of caves, earthquakes, and echoes. He is simply one of the many different gods that the ancient Aztec people worshipped. And the reason why we believe that it is Tepeyollotl who is on that cap goes back to the fact that this god is often portrayed as a feline god with a headdress that has green feathers on it.
What fans should know is that Tepeyollotl is a character that hasn’t been seen in any of the comics that Marvel has released. There have been Aztec gods in Marvel Comics, especially the ones who belong to a pantheon called the Tēteoh. However, Tepeyollotl is not one of the gods in that pantheon, and this is where it becomes interesting because Marvel seems to have introduced an entirely new character to the MCU.
This isn’t something new in relation to how Marvel Studios handles stories that are connected to the supernatural. After all, the recently concluded Moon Knight series focuses a lot on Egyptian mythology as it introduced new characters in the form of Egyptian gods that have never even made it to any of the comics released by Marvel.
Considering that there is a connection between Black Panther and Moon Knight, considering that they both talk about Egyptian gods (the panther goddess Bast is Egyptian), it becomes understandable that Marvel introduced an entirely new god to the MCU in the form of Tepeyollotl.
How Will Tepeyollotl Fit Into Black Panther 2?
If that is indeed Tepeyollotl on the leaked photos of the cap, then fans of Black Panther will become even more confused because the movie is now treading on ground that has never been seen in the comics. So, how will Tepeyollotl fit into Black Panther 2?
It isn’t exactly a secret that Black Panther 2: Wakanda Forever could be introducing Namor and the Atlanteans into the MCU, especially with Tenoch Huerta reportedly playing the role of Namor. And that is perhaps where Tepeyollotl will fit into.
For those who don’t know, actor Tenoch Huerta is Mexican. Meanwhile, the ancient Aztec empire is found in Mexico. And it can be theorized that the Atlanteans that will be featured in Wakanda Forever are connected to the Aztec gods and the Aztec empire instead of the usual Greek pantheon that the Atlanteans are often associated with.
If you can recall, Aquaman in DC is connected to the Greek gods because of the relationship that the Atlanteans have with Poseidon and some of the other members of the Greek pantheon. And if Marvel were to use the same kind of Greek connection with Namor and the MCU version of Atlantis, that is where things might become confusing.
As such, it is possible that Namor and the Atlanteans in the MCU are going to be portrayed as remnants of the ancient Aztec empire. Vast as the Aztec empire is, the Atlanteans could be worshipping Tepeyollotl instead of the other Aztec gods, just like how Wakandans have Bast as their patron goddess instead of worshipping any of the other Egyptian gods.
It could also be possible that Namor is basically the Atlantean counterpart of the Wakandans’ Black Panther in the sense that the character is the protector of Atlantis and is given powers by the Aztec jaguar god, just like how the Black Panther is the protector of Wakanda and is given power by the panther goddess.
A conflict between Namor’s Atlanteans and the Wakandans could arise, especially considering that Wakanda had just lost its king and protector. The gaping hole left in Wakanda’s leadership might play a role in the overall conflict between the Wakandans and the Atlanteans. Then again, these are all speculative in nature because we have no idea what the upcoming Black Panther 2 movie will be all about and how Tepeyollotl fits into what we know about the film.
Still, it would be interesting to see how Marvel Studios will handle the introduction of Namor and how Chadwick Boseman’s death will play a role in all of it. Of course, rumors of Winston Duke (M’Baku) getting a big raise and quite possibly a bigger role in the Black Panther sequel and of Shuri possibly earning herself the leading role are still around. And it should be a delight if Marvel is able to find a way to balance all of the different new characters with the expanded roles that the older characters will see in the upcoming Black Panther sequel.