Black Panther shirts found at certain retailers are paying homage to some legendary heavy metal bands. Target is selling a Black Panther shirt that represents a take on a classic Black Sabbath logo, while JCPenney is currently offering a shirt that pays tribute to Pantera. The lines between homage and rip-off may be a bit blurry, but either way, Black Panther fans who also happen to like heavy metal may be in luck, if you're looking for an item of clothing that represents both of those interests at the same time.
Starting with the Target shirt, it's a take on one of the classic Black Sabbath logos, which features the band's name in white lettering on the side and across the top. However, instead of having some heavy metal imagery underneath and beside the lettering, this Black Panther shirt swaps in King T'Challa in his 1970s Marvel Comics glory. And, naturally, Black Sabbath has been changed to Black Panther. If you're interested in picking the shirt up, it's priced at a pretty reasonable $12.99.
Moving on to the Pantera shirt, this one can be found at JCPenney. The shirt features the hero's head underneath an orange and yellow Black Panther logo. The phrase "King of Wakanda" is written on the bottom. The lettering on top is clearly influenced by the font that has been used for the Pantera logo for years. Fans of Marvel Comics may not recognize this initially, but metal fans will surely be quick to notice. Whether or not whoever licensed these shirts was actually trying to pay a respectful homage, with proper permission, is where this may wander into a bit of a grey area.
It's one thing if these shirts are properly paying credit in some way to both Pantera and Black Sabbath, but it's another entirely if these designs were done without paying any mind to the metal artists that are influencing the clothing. Disney, who owns Marvel, recently came under fire for allegedly stealing the design for the Solo: A Star Wars Story posters from the artwork on a series of albums. Is this another similar situation? If so, are the retails to blame? Is Disney to blame? For now, there's no answer to that. But there's also been no accusation of wrongdoing. At the moment, these are just some cool Black Panther shirts that metal music fans are sure to appreciate.
While Black Panther didn't really have anything to do with metal music, the movie is getting ready to cross the $1 billion mark at the worldwide box office. So there's no doubt that quite a few fans of metal music around the world have seen the movie. Even for those who don't even realize what these shirts are influenced by, they're pretty good-looking shirts either way. Maybe for Black Panther 2 we can get some Metallica and Anthrax influenced shirts? You can check out images of the heavy metal-inspired Black Panther shirts for yourself below. This was first reported by Metal Injection.