King T’Chaka is known for protecting his people and ensuring peace in his nation of Wakanda.
Lineage of Warrior Kings
Born into a fierce line of warrior kings who have protected the African country of Wakanda, T’Chaka grows up learning about his future responsibilities as monarch.
Thanks to Wakanda’s past kings and protectors, the Black Panthers, T’Chaka grows up in a country largely hidden, colonized, and unconquered for untold centuries. The Black Panthers not only protect the country’s citizens, but also their precious resource, Vibranium—a rare, ultra-durable metal that absorbs energy and vibration. This metal is the source of their country’s technological advancements and exists in the Great Sacred Mound in Wakanda.
As a young prince, his father The Great Unifier King Azzuri meets a surprising ally from the outside world during World War II when word of Vibranium drew outside nations to their borders, specifically the Nazi Party from the Axis powers. To protect their resource, country, and aid in the outside world’s fight, Azzuri makes a deal with United States government-sponsored Super Soldier Steve Rogers, AKA Captain America, who comes to know and respect Wakanda’s culture. Azzuri provides him with Vibranium, which was subsequently used in the construction of the Captain’s shield. Thanks to the Captain’s will coupled with his shield, the allies win WWII. Though, some within Wakanda criticize the king for sharing their secret technology.
In 1959, Prince T’Chaka was kidnapped and held hostage by a scion of the Dread Dormammu, Geoffrey Sydenham’s organization, ICON, and his co-conspirator General Dieter Skul, who together sought to overthrow and pillage Wakanda for its technology. The Avengers of that time, led by Nick Fury, assisted in taking down these enemies of Wakanda while the U.S. State Department rescued the country’s future king.
T’Chaka grows up to marry the chief scientist of Wakanda, N’Yami, an orphan Wakandan who was known for creating Vibranium rings and anklets to quell aches and pains. Together they have a son, T’Challa, AKA Black Panther. T’Chaka later adopts a young orphan who survives a plane crash in the northern part of their country, a white child named Hunter, AKA White Wolf.
T’Chaka faces his annual challengers with the right amount of force and timely evasion techniques—a ritual to prove he’s still fit to rule. He works tirelessly to maintain the peace between the country’s many tribes.
T’Chaka’s senses and physical attributes have been enhanced to near-superhuman levels by the heart-shaped herb. He can lift up to 750 pounds with supreme effort. His eyesight and night vision are especially keen. Using sight and smell, he can track people through the jungle even in the heaviest of rainfall. He is a skilled tactician, strategist, scientist, tracker, gymnast, and unarmed combatant whose unique hybrid fighting style incorporates acrobatics and aspects of animal mimicry.
Disrupters of Peace
Several outsiders desire the potential power that Vibranium could offer them and make malicious moves to obtain it, including Wolfgang von Strucker, AKA Baron Strucker, a Wakandan who aides him, and Dutch scientist Ulysses Klaw, AKA Klaw. Engaging the later enemy proves fatal to T’Chaka.
Royal Family and Unexpected Friends
T’Chaka’s closest allies are his family, the witch doctor N’Baza, his trusted advisor, and the warrior women of the Dora Milaje. His younger brother, S’Yan, comes to his defense when T’Chaka’s tribal council member Cangza doubts his decisions and the decisions of the former king Azzuri.
T’Chaka also receives criticism for adopting an orphan that survives a plane crash, Hunter, but he doesn’t let that stop him from raising him. Hunter grows up to lead the Hatut Zeraze, Wakanda’s secret police.
The king’s first wife N’Yami, though at first hesitant about being his queen and giving him an heir, chooses to rule by his side after he makes a convincing argument about the future of their reign together. She is the reason for his success against a potential Hydra invasion, though she falls ill just after and just before the birth of their son, T’Challa. T’Chaka seeks out an unlikely ally, Howard Stark, an industrialist and innovator from America. T’Chaka agrees to share a small amount of their Vibranium for a cure but the cure never makes it to Wakanda, and N’Yami perishes after giving birth, a loss that deeply impacts the king.
He finds joy though in raising his sons and T’Chaka eventually remarries after meeting an outsider, Ramonda, who acts as mother-in-all-but-blood to his son T’Challa and mother to their daughter, Shuri.
A King’s Legacy
T’Chaka’s peace faced a grave threat in the form of a greedy and dangerous Hydra leader, Baron Strucker, and his army when they breached Wakanada’s western border wall, thanks to a Wakandan traitor on the inside. With his scientists in his ear, N’yami and Takami, he ordered them to activate the Bashenga Unit, a troop of warriors equipped with jetpacks and spears who took aim at the enemy’s tank. They cast their spears and once they penetrated the tank’s hull, each warrior activated them and the release of energy enabled T’Chaka to strike the final blow that beat their enemy back. Though their victory was short-lived when T’Chaka received word that the pregnant N’Yami fainted. Rushing to her side, S’Yan shared the dire news with his brother that N’Yami suffered from a rare autoimmune disease. He reached out to Howard Stark who apparently had a bio-nanite enhancement infusion, or super-booster shot, that might help her. T’Chaka offered Stark an ounce of Vibranium as a trade and Stark agreed but only if the shot worked. But the cure-all never made it to Wakanda as Hyrda and the Wakandan traitor exploded the transport before it left the ground. N’Yami gave birth to T’Challa but died a week later in her sleep.
T’Chaka’s grief was nearly insurmountable and he escaped through drinking, courtesans, and dark strategies. Though he found joy in raising his son and kept his sadness from him. T’Chaka allowed the boy to accompany him on a border inspection, however, he got lost. It wasn’t until Ramonda, a South African who sought aid against the apartheid her people suffered. The two bonded and Ramonda, seeing T’Challa as a son, became T’Chaka’s second wife and Queen to Wakanda.
T’Chaka made a fatal mistake by later allying himself with Dutch scientist Ulysses Klaw, who secretly sought to plunder the rare-vibration-absorbing Vibranium metal. Klaw killed T’Chaka and enslaved the Wakandans while pillaging the Vibranium, but young Prince T’Challa drove Klaw out maiming him with his own sonic weapon. T’Chaka’s advisor N’Baza ruled Wakanda as acting regent until T’Challa would become king.