Ryan Coogler's Black Panther continues to garner box office receipts, plaudits and praise from, well, pretty much everyone. A lot of that comes down to the film's own salience, but another reason why it's resonated in quite the way it has is because of the talents of the cast itself, with Michael B. Jordan's Erik Killmonger in particular a key standout.
There's a real intensity that Jordan brings to the role, the kind that also makes his villain - or rather anti-villain - stand head and shoulders above Marvel's other rogues. There's real tragedy to the character, a compelling conviction, and a fantastic presence spurred on by Coogler and Joe Robert Cole's script. What's more, however, is that while Jordan undoubtedly draws strength from the talents of his costars and the script itself, the success of his performance lies squarely with the actor himself - it's difficult to imagine someone else taking on the role.
And that's not to say that Black Panther lacks intensity on the whole. Rather, the nature of Jordan's character - and the fact he's a stellar actor in his own right - makes Killmonger the villain he is. He's definitely the best antagonist the MCU has seen thus far, and to impart that impression in just one film is uniquely impressive.