Everett K. Ross
|Everett K. Ross|
|First appearance||Ka-Zar #17 (September 1998)|
|Created by||Kenny Martinez|
|Full name||Everett Kenneth Ross|
|Place of origin||Earth|
|Team affiliations||National Security Agency|
United States Department of State
|Supporting character of||Black Panther|
Everett Kenneth Ross is a fictional character appearing in American comic books published by Marvel Comics. Primarily an ally of superhero Black Panther, the character exists within Marvel's main shared universe, known as the Marvel Universe.
Everett Ross debuted in Ka-Zar Vol. 3, #17, and was created by Christopher Priest and Kenny Martinez. Afterward, Ross went on to be a major character in Black Panther Vol. 3, #1-32, #34-35, #38-49, #57-58, and #62. Ross subsequently appeared in issues #1-2, #4-6, #16, #19, #21-24, #26, and #37 of Black Panther Vol. 4, and issue #7 of Black Panther Vol. 5. Outside of Black Panther, Ross had a guest role in The Uncanny X-Men Vol. 1, #387.
According to creator Christopher Priest, Ross's personality was based on that of Chandler Bing, a character from the television series Friends, while the name was inspired by the Family Ties character Alex P. Keaton. After introducing Ross in Ka-Zar, Priest chose to bring the character back in Black Panther for use as an audience surrogate who "saw Panther the way Panther had ultimately come to be seen by Marvel: Just Some Guy who was routinely overshadowed by heroes in which they were more invested".
Priest further elaborated, "Comics are traditionally created by white males for white males. I figured, and I believe rightly, that for Black Panther to succeed, it needed a white male at the center, and that white male had to give voice to the audience's misgivings or apprehensions or assumptions about this character and this book. Ross needed to be un-PC to the point of being borderline racist"; and clarified, "I don't think Ross was racist at all. I just think that his stream-of-conscious narrative is a window into things I imagine many whites say or at least think when no blacks are around; myths about black culture and behavior. I was also introducing a paradigm shift to the way Panther was to be portrayed; somebody had to give voice to the expectation of a dull and colorless character who always got his butt kicked or who was overshadowed by Thor and Iron Man suddenly knocking out Mephisto with one punch".
Fictional character biography
Everett Ross was a US State Department employee, whose job was to escort foreign diplomats on American soil. As a child, Ross was not well adjusted. Obese and unloved by his mother, he was constantly bullied with his most embarrassing memory being beaten up by a girl named Natalie McPhail. He eventually left home and turned his life around by working for the government. His world changed forever when he was assigned to T'Challa, the Black Panther and ruler of Wakanda.
Everett and T'Challa faced multiple threats to Wakanda's sovereignty. Ross assists him in many of these threats. In gratitude, the Panther often risks much for Ross in return. The first threat he and Ross encounter is 'Xcon', an alliance of rogue intelligence agents backing a coup led by the Reverend Achebe.
Ross subsequently acts as a liaison for Shuri, the younger sister of Black Panther, during Shuri's first goodwill visit to the United States. When their convoy is attacked by assassins, Shuri saves Ross's life.
In an alternate future seen in the Black Panther storyline "The Once and Future King", an elderly Ross is abducted by a cabal of villains assembled by T'Charra, who intends to use Ross as the bait in his plan to kill and usurp Black Panther. Ross is rescued by Black Panther, who he in turn saves when Black Panther suffers a heart attack, resuscitating the hero while screaming, "Your majesty—come back—blast you, T'Challa—we've been through too much!!"
During the "Rising Storm!" story-arc of the series X-Men Forever, a version of Ross appears on Earth-161. After Storm is outed as a murderer and an ally of a criminal organization called the Consortium, she flees to and is given sanctuary by Wakanda, to the consternation of Ross. Ross subsequently appears on behalf of the President of the United States at both the United Nations (where he warns the other representatives about the threat posed by Storm's takeover of Wakanda) and a meeting with the heads of Genosha and S.H.I.E.L.D.
In other media
Everett Ross appears in the 2010 Black Panther animated series, voiced by David Busch.
- Martin Freeman portrays Everett Ross in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. It is stated in Black Panther that he was a member of the United States Air Force before joining the CIA.
- In Captain America: Civil War, he is the Deputy Task Force Commander of the Joint Counterterrorism Center and reports to Secretary of State Thaddeus Ross. During this time he worked with the faction of the Avengers led by Tony Stark / Iron Man, and aided the "civil war" in attempts to apprehend Bucky Barnes / Winter Soldier, who was framed for bombing the Vienna International Centre that killed T'Chaka. Ross supervises the incarceration of Helmut Zemo after he is captured by Black Panther in Siberia.
- Freeman reprises his role in Black Panther. After running into T'Challa during a black market arms sale in Busan, South Korea where the CIA tried to buy a sample of vibranium from Ulysses Klaue, Ross is injured when he takes a bullet to the spine protecting Nakia, prompting T'Challa to take Ross to Wakanda for treatment despite the country's usual policies against outsiders. In return, Ross briefs T'Challa and his family on the history of Erik Stevens aka Killmonger, a former American Black Ops operative who is actually T'Challa's cousin (his father sold Vibranium to Klaue and was killed by T'Chaka when Erik was young). After Killmonger nearly kills T'Challa in a ceremonial challenge for the throne, Ross joins T'Challa's family in escaping to the Wakandan mountains, where they find and heal the wounded T'Challa. He later assists in preventing Vibranium weapons being taken out of the country by remotely piloting a Wakandan jet to destroy the jets carrying weapons, staying put even when the lab where he is operating the jet is attacked. In a mid-credits scene, Ross is seen attending a UN summit where T'Challa publicly pledges Wakanda's diplomatic and humanitarian assistance to the wider world.
- Freeman will reprise his role in Black Panther 2.
- Priest, Christopher (June 2001). "Chapter Eleven: Black Panther Series Commentary". digitalpriest.com. Digital Priest. Retrieved 8 July 2015.
- Smith, Zack (10 August 2015). "Priest on Black Panther, Pt. 1: Everyone Kind Of Forgot Who Panther Was". newsarama.com. Newsarama. Retrieved 7 January 2016.
- Smith, Zack (11 August 2015). "Priest on Black Panther, Pt. 2: It's Not Arrogance, it's Competence". newsarama.com. Newsarama. Retrieved 7 January 2016.
- Black Panther (vol. 3) #3-4
- Black Panther (vol.3) #1-12 (November 1998 - October 1999)
- Black Panther (vol. 4) #1-2
- Reginald Hudlin and Jonathan Maberry (w), Will Conrad (p), Will Conrad (i), Peter Pantazis (col), VC's Cory Petit (let), Axel Alonso (ed). "Power, Part 1" Black Panther v5, #7 (5 August 2009), United States: Marvel Comics
- Nick Spencer (w), Javier Pina and Miguel Sepulveda (p), Javier Pina and Miguel Sepulveda (i), Rachelle Rosenberg (col), VC's Joe Caramagna (let), Tom Brevoort (ed). Captain America: Steve Rogers #4 (24 August 2016), United States: Marvel Comics
- Christopher Priest (w), Sal Velluto (p), Bob Almond (i), VLM (col), Sharpefont and PT (let), Mike Marts (ed). "The Once and Future King, Part 1" Black Panther v3, #36 (December 2001), United States: Marvel Comics
- Christopher Priest (w), Sal Velluto (p), Bob Almond (i), VLM's Jennifer Schellinger (col), Sharpefont's Paul Tutrone (let), Mike Marts (ed). "The Once and Future King, Part 2" Black Panther v3, #37 (January 2002), United States: Marvel Comics
- Chris Claremont (w), Vale, Peter; Grummett, Tom (p), Al Vey, Gary Martin, and Terry Pallot (i), Wilfredo Quintana (col), Tom Orzechowski (let), Mark Pannicia (ed). "The Rising Storm!" X-Men Forever v2, #15 (13 January 2010), United States: Marvel Comics
- Chris Claremont (w), Rodney Buchemi (p), Greg Adams (i), Wil Quintana (col), Tom Orzechowski (let), Michael Horwitz (ed). "Fire--From the Sky!" X-Men Forever 2 #12 (24 November 2010), United States: Marvel Comics
- Chris Claremont (w), Andy Smith (p), Cory Hamscher (i), Wil Quintana (col), Tom Orzechowski (let), Michael Horwitz (ed). "Strange Days!" X-Men Forever 2 #14 (29 December 2010), United States: Marvel Comics
- De Semlyen, Phil (February 22, 2016). "Martin Freeman's Captain America: Civil War character revealed". Empire. Retrieved February 22, 2016.
- Wilding, Josh (January 21, 2017). "Martin Freeman, Chadwick Boseman And More Spotted On Black Panther Set". We Got This Covered.
- Mancuso, Vinnie (August 16, 2019). "'Black Panther 2': Martin Freeman Confirms the Return of Everett Ross". Collider.