Volume 5, Issue 19!
“Black Widow Strikes”
MINOR SPOILERS FOR Captain America: Civil War
Hot off the heels of the release of Captain America: Civil War, Marvel Studios head Kevin Feige revealed a development that many Marvel fans have been waiting a long time for: a Black Widow solo movie. However, before we all go dancing in the street over a solo Natasha Romanoff film, it’s worth noting that Feige says that Marvel is “committed” to making a Black Widow film, without mentioning any release date, directors, or literally any other information on a solo Black Widow movie.
It’s befuddling, I know. Since the release of Joss Whedon’s Avengers way back in 2012, demand for a Black Widow movie has only become more deafening from the nerd verse. But time and time again, Marvel hasn’t given Scarlet Johansson’s super spy the spotlight. Sure, she’s been given more prominent roles in Age of Ultron and both Winter Soldier and Civil War, but so far the spotlight has eluded her, which makes no sense, really. After the release of Lucy, which proved that Johansson was a box office draw, you’d think Marvel would have rethought their release schedule to include a solo Natasha movie, but apparently that wasn’t enough.
Perhaps the problem lies with Marvel Studios’ decision to announce their release schedule leading up to Infinity War two and a half years ago. It was a move that was both thrilling and upsetting, because as awesome as it was hearing that Thor: Ragnarok was coming or that Black Panther was being made, it took a lot of the surprise out of the Marvel movie machine (not to mention the fact that it immediately lowered the stakes for many of the movies). It’s also put some restrictions on Marvel Studios’ decisions as well. Sure, spots on that schedule have been moved around to make room for Spider-Man: Homecoming and Ant-Man and The Wasp, but at some point, the more Marvel moves things around, the less impressive that initial press conference was. Hell, they’re probably thinking about not even doing one for the remaining films, or at least probably announcing fewer movies.
But aside from hesitation to move their release schedule around again, perhaps Marvel isn’t confident that they have a good story for a Black Widow movie? They shouldn’t, because Natasha Romanoff has plenty of interesting angles that the studio could explore in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Black Widow could look into the Winter Soldier program that was just shown in Civil War, or she could even try and investigate the program that turned her into the badass superspy she is today. I mean, imagine how cool it would be if Black Widow learns that someone is trying to restart the program that made her into a spy? That’s a story that would give you some really cool action, and would have strong emotional ties for Natasha.
Of course, after writing all of this, it is worth noting that Inhumans has recently been “removed” from the Marvel release schedule, so it’s certainly possibly that a Black Widow movie could take that spot. And after both Infinity War Avengers movies (or whatever they will be called), it might be a good breathe from crazy cosmic action. But the only question is, will the fans that waited so patiently even care by then?