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Slade Wilson, a.k.a. Deathstroke, was our latest Character of the Month. Week after week, we'd test his abilities as a combatant against opponents he's never met before. He was able to defeat Boba Fett and Taskmaster, but his luck ran out when he faced Deadpool and Hellboy. For his final week as Character of the Month, he squared off with one of Marvel's most formidable heroes: T'Challa, a.k.a. Black Panther. Both are highly intelligent, heavily armed and very skilled, but who does the community think should win between these two popular characters? The votes are in and the community is siding with...
While most voters sided with the Avenger, a majority of them agreed that this will be no walk in the park for either combatant. Even though one's a hero and one's a mercenary, they have many similarities when it comes to combat. Both are covered in incredibly durable costumes (vibranium micro weave vs. Nth metal), armed to the teeth (Slade's assortment of bladed weapons and firearms vs. T'Challa's anti-metal claws and energy daggers), and, as proven time and time again, both are gifted tacticians and praiseworthy hand-to-hand combatants.
They're comparable in many attributes, but the community believes T'Challa's combat feats (a Super Skrull and Iron Fist come to mind), the lasting power of his armor (basically immune to firearms and cannot be stabbed, only slashed), and deadly anti-metal claws will eventually earn him the victory. Again, it's a fight that's sure to leave both injured and in major need of some downtime, but the people have spoken and they think this is a fight that T'Challa's going to eventually take. Slade will give it is all and make T'Challa work for the victory, but when all is said and done, T'Challa's durability and means of damaging his opponent are big factors. Now, let's check out the poll's results and see what some Comic Viners had to say about this brutal battle.
- Black Panther 58%
- Deathstroke 35%
- Too close to call 7%
"I'll take Black Panther for the majority.
While Deathstroke is stronger, possesses a healing factor and operates as if he is always morals off, in this particular battle he is out-skilled and more importantly, out-teched.
The three things that T'Challa brings to the table that will make the most difference are: the vibranium armor (pretty effective versus bullets, staffs and stabbing swords (if not slashing)), the anti-metal claws (which should destroy Slade's armor/sword) and his superior skill.
Slade will get a few wins because he is really that good. But Black Panther will tear through his weapons/armor faster than Slade can get through his.
"This is a pretty darned even match up if ever I've seen one. I can see either guy taking his fair share of wins. However, since this is New 52 Deathstroke, and his pre-New 52 "skill" feats also apply, I'm going with Stroke for a slight majority - 6/10. New 52 Stroke is incredibly durable, with strength and speed to match thanks in part to his Nth metal armor which enhances those traits to an even greater degree. His just plain quicker thinking will serve him well here too. Panther is easily the better martial artist, but I don't think that will be enough in a random encounter against Stroke's all-around superior physicals (in my opinion) and wider assortment of weaponry, and Stroke is no slouch in the martial arts department either. Panther has stealth mode for sneak attacking, but I'm not sure how much good it will do against a guy who can detect minor variations in air pressure to "sense" encroaching opponents. From where I sit, both are pretty equally matched when it comes to battle tactics, and neither are afraid to kill, though I do think Stroke will be much more apt to go for the killing stroke (heehee) early on - that's just his mentality - which might be the deciding factor in this particular battle.
All in all - very slight edge to Deathstroke."
"I'd probably back Panther. To keep it simple, if we are using pre-52 and new 52 feats and tech for Slade, then Slade is just carrying the edge in strength and toting a decent healing factor. Using just new 52 feats, I'd say Panther is faster. If pre-52 skill includes his speed feats, it's much closer. The big difference here is T'Challa boasts the better gear. His vibranium suit is going to protect him from most of Slade's weaponry. So the guns, blast staff, explosives, and the sword on certain types of attack, will be dealt with by the suit. Now while Slade's nth armor is durable, a skilled enough fighter has been shown to bypass it, so T'Challa is skilled enough to do so and on top of that, his anti-metal claws would anyway. And with his claws, T'Challa can damage Slade's weaponry, especially if it comes down to sword vs claws, which it most likely will. Slade's best bets to deal damage would be slashing along the grain, and he doesn't need the knowledge to do so or potentially get T'Challa in a choke hold and slowly apply the pressure, but that would be much easier said than done.
T'Challa brings the better gear to provide a solid defense and a dismantling offense. He brings the better skill feats in general, and can match Deathstroke in most stats except for strength due to Nth metal armor. But that degree isn't so much that it makes a huge difference here. It won't be an easy battle, but I feel T'Challa should win a healthy majority with Slade going down swinging in each one."
"Oooh. This would definitely be one Hell of a match. The problem is that I truly believe that the pair have advantages and disadvantages over the other. Deathstroke naturally has the advantage when it comes to long range with his arsenal of weaponry while Black Panther would probably come up nearly his equal at hand to hand ranges. Both are adept in hand to hand combat and while Deathstroke might be physically superior to Black Panther, I think he would not be able to fully overcome Panther's speed and quickness. Unlike the previous week's opponent, Taskmaster (whom I voted at losing by the way) would only be at the peak of human capability as a top level athlete; Panther is most definitely beyond that level and is probably close to Captain America himself. In addition, most of Panther's weapons such as his claws and energy daggers are designed for close quarters combat--which is why I think he would hold a slight edge over Deathstroke in that particular arena.
In addition despite the New-52 Deathstroke in his suit of Nth Metal, I'm not sure that he would be able to overcome the protection of Black Panther's vibranium-mesh outfit while Panther's daggers and anti-metal claws might be able to actually bypass Deathstroke's armor.
Not to mention that both of these individuals are highly trained and skilled tacticians and strategists; in fact that I suspect that the Panther would actually edge out Deathstroke in that area as well.
Both of them are too evenly deadlocked, unable to overwhelm or overcome the other. They will immediately understand that Deathstroke has the advantage at range which the Panther will deny him the opportunity to take the maximum advantage of. While the Panther is just too dangerous at close quarters for Deathstroke to defeat. Afterwards, I think both men will take a step back and take a breath and realize "the fight is too evenly matched, there's no real point to fighting it out here today in what may result in a stalemate."
The Panther will realize that by walking away, he can limit potential property damage or loss of life. Deathstroke is a consummate professional and pros know when it's time to walk away as well. They will decide that they gained some valuable intelligence about the other and devise some sort of plan to counteract the other's advantages at a later date. Neither side really wins here, but neither really loses.
Do you think the right character won? Feel free to continue the conversation below! Voting for the next Character of the Month will begin next week!