The first, 22-film long chapter of the Marvel Cinematic Universe has come to a close. And we’re here to tell you that there’s no degree to which Natasha Alianovna Romanova doesn’t still deserve all of your love.
WARNING: Spoilers for Avengers: Endgame to follow. It’s been over a month, but proceed at your own risk…
Yes, it’s true that the big emotional grace note at the end of Endgame was Tony Stark’s self-sacrifice to save the universe, completing his transformation from the most selfish Avenger to the most selfless. And it’s 100% understandable to want to talk and have feels about that, a lot. But we can and we should be talking about Black Widow’s sacrifice on Vormir to obtain the Soul Stone a lot more than we are – no matter where your personal feelings on that fairly controversial scene lie. As one of the original six Avengers (in MCU continuity) and the lone female O.G., Natasha’s contribution to the films’ overall arc is immeasurable, though it hasn’t always been consistently written and even amongst her die-hard fans, folks have varying opinions on where her strengths as a character and team member have hit their peaks. (Personally, I’m a big fan of the first Avengers and especially Captain America: The Winter Soldier, but your mileage may vary.) There are also compelling arguments that run both ways on why the decision to kill off Natasha in Endgame was both narratively logical and perhaps not the greatest optics in general. At the end of the day, either way, we’re kind of still longing for a 5-minute memorial send-off for that magnificent ex-assassin who not only found her identity, but found a home amongst heroes.
We are, at long last, finally getting a Black Widow solo film (currently in production), which is definitely a rarity; you don’t typically get title treatment flicks for characters who have already been killed off in the main continuity. (Look, yeah, Loki’s getting a Disney+ show but… is he even dead now?! Jeez, that freaking guy.) Though it’s been incubating for so long, it stands a real chance of at the very least giving us a compelling origin narrative or deeper insight into the best of Black Widow that will bring her complete arc to a satisfying close. So, while we’re waiting – and also because she features in our current Marvel Gear & Goods crate, so she’s been on our mind even more! – here is Scarlett Johansson starring in Natasha Romanoff’s Greatest MCU Hits. ENJOY!