The trailer for the upcoming Avengers: Age of Ultron movie is out. I don't quite know what to make of it. The Hulk is fighting his friends, when Banner doesn't look really sad. Hawkeye's running around in the snow, Captain America's kicking open doors in monasteries. Ultron looks about as good as I could have hoped, but who knows if it'll come together well? Even after all the superhero movies I've seen I enjoyed, I'm still gunshy. Batman and Robin casts a long shadow, and it's very cold.
I didn't really want to talk about the trailer, though. Among the reactions to it elsewhere were some noting that there's still no sign of a Black Widow movie among all of Marvel's projects. It does seem strange Marvel seemingly isn't even trying to make a movie about Scarlett Johansson kicking people in the face and tasing them with the Widow's sting. She seems open to the idea, people seem willing to pay to watch movies where she does cool stuff, Marvel Studios likes money, what's the problem? Are they really worried it wouldn't do well? They're trying to make a Dr. Strange film, not to mention Ant-Man. Guardians of the Galaxy has made over half a billion dollars. I think Black Widow: Choose Your Own Subtitle Because "The Widow's Kiss" Was The Best I Could Manage And That's Terrible would do all right.
Natasha is contacted by some old contact of hers, an informant, an old lover or compatriot in arms, take your pick, who warns her about some major threat. A gene bomb that will randomly mutate a stadium full of people, killing most of them, leaving the rest with wild, likely uncontrollable powers (could play off the idea of Strucker's experiments we heard about at the end of The Winter Soldier, where Wanda and Pietro were the only survivors). Or AIM developed their own Stealth Helicarrier, or there are remnants of the aliens that attacked in the first Avengers flick running about, selling their remaining scraps of technology for some unknown motive. Whatever, Natashe finds out about, but can't get ahold of anyone else as backup, so off she goes. Maybe, I emphasize maybe, Hawkeye could show up late to lend a little assistance, just to continue building the friendship there, but it's still 95% Black Widow.
So Natasha's tracking the leads, using the skills she has none of the rest of the bunch do, but she's a more public figure since all her history got released along with SHIELD and Hydra's. There are a lot of people with scores to settle, for revenge over allies and loved ones she killed, or for plots or weapons buys she thwarted, for humiliations she brought upon them by making it look so easy. While she's hunting whatever we've decided the threat is, all those people are on her tail. It may even be the people she's after who have alerted all these old enemies to her location, to keep her occupied.
Am I hoping this would pit the Black Widow against a host of Marvel's hired guns? Yes. Would I like to see Batroc reappear? Yes. Would I like to see the Black Widow fight Taskmaster? You betcha. Paste Pot Pete (sorry, the Trapster)? Heck yeah. You could even let Natasha be the one who prompts the name change, either now, or in some past meeting, depending on which name you want him to have in the present. Could we play up the "former Russian spy" angle and perhaps get the Red Ghost and his Super-Apes? OK, that's probably pushing it - but what about Arcade? You know you want to see the Black Widow escape Murderworld.
I'm sure they must have a possible script floating around somewhere, it just seems strange they won't go for it. C'mon Marvel, you feel bulletproof right now, don't ya? And you could beat Warner Bros' Wonder Woman movie into the theaters, and then talk big about that, which I'm sure you'd love to do. Just make sure you focus on her being badass and good at what she does, maybe include an attractive guy as either an antagonist, or someone she has to protect for reasons, to give the ladies or interested fellows some equal time gawking. Get a solid plot that keeps things moving, doesn't get bogged down in too many meandering sideplots (like say Amazing Spider-Man 2), some good action set pieces, fights or Natasha avoiding fights by being sneaky and clever. Some good dialogue, maybe let her play up Natasha's sense of humor some (she'd have that sort of fatalistic Russian humor, right?), and there you go. I'm pretty sure it's doable.