The Black Panther's Little Sister, Shuri, Is Our New Favorite Marvel Hero

Marvel's Black Panther finally hits theaters this Friday, Feb. 16. When it does, there's one character in particular we want you to keep on your radar.

If you want to watch a superhero flick full of ladies who kick butt, it'Black Panther. Lupita Nyongo's Nakia is a clever Wakandan spy who travels the world helping people in need and reporting her findings back to her homeland. Danai Gurira's Okoye is the general of the all-woman Wakandan special forces, the Dora Milaje. There is also Ramonda, played by Angela Bassett, who is the mother of the Black Panther, T'Challa, as well as his wise royal advisor.

But in a film where every character is a standout, one character manages to shine above the rest. She's T'Challa's younger sister, Shuri. Brilliantly played by Letitia Wright, Shuri is a 16-year-old tech genius. According to a Screen Rant interview with Black Panther producer Nate Moore, she's the smartest person in the whole Marvel Cinematic Universe, giving Tony Stark a run for his money.Black Panther: Letitia Wright as Shuri poster

(via Marvel)

But even if Tony Stark were as brilliant as Shuri, he couldn't do what she does. That's because her country, Wakanda, happens to exist over massive deposits of Vibranium. This fictional metal is the strongest in the world (and the material from which Captain America's shield is made) and has limitless technical applications.

With a huge stockpile of Vibranium at her disposal, her resources are endless and she has the ability to invent anything she can dream up. In fact, she develops every piece of awesome technology that T'Challa utilizes throughout the film, including his brand new Black Panther suit. When she sees an opportunity for a cool new gadget, she doesn't waste any time before she creates it. Thanks to Shuri, Wakanda is the most technologically advanced country in the world.

And Shuri's inventions are cool. From tiny discs that allow her to remotely pilot vehicles in other continents to noise-canceling, self-contained shoes (which she affectionately dubs "sneakers") to T'Challa's kinetic force-absorbing Black Panther suit, everything she creates is as impressive as it is valuable.

Shuri also defies all stereotypes. She's the smartest girl in the world, but she's not introverted or closed-off. She's snarky and has little time for the age-old Wakandan traditions, which occasionally gets her in trouble with her elders. She's feisty and loves puns, and she's not afraid to poke fun and be casual with her big brother, even when he's crowned king. Plus, in a movie that's full of well-earned laughs, Shuri is responsible for all of the best jokes.

We also won't spoil the post-credits scene, but let's just say that her technical abilities allow a familiar face in the Marvel Cinematic Universe to overcome their inner demons—and just in time for the Infinity War!

Even though Shuri isn't a fighter by nature, she is also willing to jump into battle if duty calls. She's concocted some pretty powerful weapons only she knows how to utilize, and they made her quite formidable in battle.

Black Panther: Shuri's arm cannons

(Black Panther via Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures)

By the end of the movie, Shuri is someone who every girl can look up to. She's brilliant, fun and dedicated to the people she cares about. If everyone winds up loving her as much as we do, we don't think it's a stretch for Shuri to get some screentime beyond what she shares with T'Challa in more Black Panther films. We'd love to see Tony Stark struggling to keep up with Shuri's wits, since her inventions knock all of his out of the water.

And we're not saying we want this to happen, but if something were to ever happen to T'Challa, Shuri would be totally equipped to take up the mantle of the Black Panther for herself. She does it in the comic books, so it's not out of the question for it to happen in the movies, too. Because Chadwick Boseman is such a great T'Challa, we hope this doesn't happen for at least a few more movies.

Black Panther: Shuri sneaking around

(Black Panther via Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures)

Last but not least, given her royal blood, Shuri may technically be a Disney princess. We'd watch so many animated movies about this character. Just saying.


Are you just like Shuri? Click HERE to take the quiz to find out which powerful Black Panther woman you are.