Black Panther first appeared in Fantastic Four issue 52 in July of 1966. Created by writer Stan Lee and artist Jack Kirby, Black Panther is considered the first African character in mainstream American comic history, and is better know as T’Challa, the king and protector of the African nation Wakanda. He possesses enhanced abilities achieved through Wakanda rituals, and has genius intellect and prefers unarmed combat whenever possible.
Powers/Abilities: Enhanced senses and physical attributes to superhuman levels by heart-shaped herb. Master of unarmed combat, hybrid style of fighting including acrobatics and animal combat mimicry. Proficient in a number of armed combat weapons and can think several steps ahead of enemy.
Fantastic Four 52 (July 1966) Jack Kirby
Synopsis: The FF are gifted a flying craft from the African nation of Wakanda, only to be immediately attacked when visiting their country. T’Challa was testing their strength for an upcoming mission.
Importance: First Appearance of Black Panther, and first African character in mainstream comics
Fantastic Four 53 (Aug 1966) Jack Kirby
Synopsis: Wakanda welcomes the FF and tells them of Ulysses Klaw, the explorer who tried to steal their Vibranium for weapons. The FF help Wakanda defeat Klaw only to find out he survived.
Importance: Origin of Black Panther, First Appearance of Vibranium, a derivative known as Anti-Metal
First Black Panther and Captain Meeting
Tales of Suspense 98 (Feb 1968) Jack Kirby
Synopsis: Captain America and the Black Panther first meet face to face after Cap’s ship is shot down in Wakanda. Cap attacks the Wakandas only to be convinced of a greater danger, Baron Zemo.
Importance: First time Captain America and Black Panther meet-up and join forces
Black Panther Considers Joining the Avengers
Captain America 100 (Apr 1968) Jack Kirby
Synopsis: Baron Zemo is trying to kill Cap and Black Panther using his solar ray, they attack him gain control of the weapon and T’Challa considers joining the team full time in Cap’s place.
Importance: Black Panther considers joining Avengers in Captain American’s place.
Black Panther Joins the Avengers
Avengers 52 (May 1968) John Buscema
Synopsis: T’Challa breaks into the Avenger’s HQ and finds them in a coma. The Grim Reaper (1st App) has them under his control, Black Panther saves the day, defeats the Reaper and joins the team.
Importance: Black Panther joins the Avengers after defeating the Grim Reaper
Black Panther Fights a New Threat
Avengers 62 (March 1969) John Buscema
Synopsis: Stuck in Antartica, the Avengers find themselves surrounded by Wakanda troops. Black Panther fights a new villain and helps the Avengers escape just in time.
Importance: 1st Man-Ape. The Avengers find themselves in Wakanda where the Black Panther must face a new threat.
Black Panther Discovers Daredevil’s Identity
Daredevil 52 (May 1969) Barry Windsor-Smith
Synopsis: Daredevil is near death due to a new experimental drug, but Black Panther has found the antidote and administers it to him only to reveal his true identity.
Importance: First time Black Panther and Daredevil meet.
Avengers 87 (Apr 1971) John Buscema
Synopsis: T’Challa origins are described in more detail, his father’s death, rise to Black Panther king of Wakanda, and how he gained his special powers.
Importance: Deeper look into T’Challa’s background and rise to Black Panther status. First appearance B’Tuma
First Black Panther Solo Story
Jungle Action 5 (July 1973) John Buscema
Synopsis: This is a reprint of Avengers 62.
Importance: First time Black Panther gets his own solo story line
Black Panther Solo Story Begins
Jungle Action 6 (Sep 1973) Rich Buckler
Synopsis: T’Challa returns back to Wakanda to find it turned upside down by the Kill Monger (1st app) The two fight to near death and Black Panther is thrown off a waterfall only to be continued in the next issue.
Importance: First time Black Panther has his own dedicated story
Jungle Action 8 (Jan 1974) Rich Buckler
Synopsis: Black Panther battles Malice (1st app) in a struggle to keep Venomm from escaping capture. Issue ends with Malice escaping into the jungle and new telling of T’Challa’s origin
Importance: Secrets revealed of Black Panther’s origin. Horatio Walters origin
First Team-Up with Spider-Man
Marvel Team-Up 20 (Apr 1974) Gil Kane
Synopsis: Spider-man is in a battle against Stergon, when Black Panther swings in to save the day and help defeat Stergon by throwing him off a cliff. Black Panther mentions his troubles in Wakanda with Kill Monger
Importance: First team-up with Spider-Man
Black Panther Battles the KKK
Jungle Action 19 (Jan 1976) Gil Kane
Synopsis: First time KKK members make their appearance in comics. Black Panther battles them over his girlfriend and begins a new story arch.
Importance: First appearance of KKK
First Solo Series
Black Panther 1 (Jan 1977) Jack Kirby
Synopsis: For the first time since creating Black Panther in 1966, Jack Kirby forms a new story surrounded by an ancient artifact and time machine and a creature from a place and time unknown.
Importance: Jack is back with Black Panther’s first solo series
Origin of Black Panther Cult
Black Panther 7 (Jan 1978) Jack Kirby
Synopsis: Origins of Wakanda, their precious resource, and first appearance of the first Black Panther of Wakanda.
Importance: Origins of Wakanda, the first Black Panther, and importance of Vibranium