The dawning of the Black Widow is finally here. Since 2010, we’ve watched as Natasha was treated as the sexy distraction for the Avengers. Trained by the Red Room, Natasha Romanoff has always been a mystery—maybe because she was supposed to be, but also because she rarely got her time in the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
From her arrival in Iron Man 2, Natasha Romanoff was always there to be underestimated by the Avengers’ opponents and use her training to get them the information they needed. In The Avengers, she was there for quippy one-liners and to make jokes about being everyone’s mom. In Age of Ultron, she was there to bet the love interest to Bruce Banner, and then, it seemed as if the Avengers movies finally realized how to use Natasha in a way that wasn’t just her coming in to make the joke about being a woman.
Avengers: Infinity War featured my favorite “female power” scene in which Wanda Maximoff was, seemingly, alone, and when Proxima Midnight (Carrie Coon) approaches her and says, “He’ll die alone, as will you,” Natasha appears and says, “She’s not alone” and fights alongside Wanda and Okoye (in a better scene representing the strength of women, rather than the “girl power” moment of Endgame).
But it took countless movies, one really good exploration of her character in The Winter Soldier, and nearly ten years in the MCU for Black Widow to get her own movie, and now that it’s here, I’ve found myself surprisingly emotional about the trailer.
Yes, seeing Natasha take the screen in a movie all her own is emotional on its own, but there’s something about this trailer that shows the beauty and power that Natasha Romanoff held and that the MCU never really explored. Her mystery, her past, all comes from what happened to her with the Red Room, and seeing her “family” as it was—getting to see Yelena and Red Guardian and whichever widow Rachel Weisz is playing—it means a lot to fans who have wanted to know more about Natasha as a character.
“I’m done running from my past” is an interesting line to explore because, I think, it feeds into the characterization of Natasha that we saw in both Infinity War and Endgame. Sure, a lot happened in Captain America: Civil War, but there was a level of maturity and calm that seemed to take over Nat that wasn’t there before, and with this movie being set in the time between Civil War and Infinity War, we get to see her explore her own past and reconnect with what made her into the Black Widow.
There’s going to be a lot of angst to explore in this movie, especially since Natasha talks about the family she once had and what happened to break them all apart. With a glimpse of Clint Barton and Nick Fury, it makes me wonder who among the Avengers will be back for Black Widow, but it’s also going to be nice to have a movie that just focuses on Nat and her story without having the looming clout of other characters coming in to take the spotlight she so rightfully earned.
I can’t wait for Black Widow, and I’m fully prepared to cry my way through it.
(image: Marvel Entertainment)
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