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9 Ways Black Widow Sets Up The Future Of The MCU | ScreenRant

On the movie side of things, Black Widow kicked off Phase Four of the Marvel Cinematic Universe and planted the seeds for its characters to reappear down the line. Although a prequel set after the events of Captain America: Civil War, its thematic connection to the current phase means a number of things have been set up for fans to expect in the next few movies.

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Chief among them is the reveal of Natasha Romanoff’s family, consisting of Yelena Belova, Melina Vostokoff, and Red Guardian. Of course, the stinger of the movie also confirmed ties to the upcoming Hawkeye series as well, so there’s a lot of promise for the future and it’s worth taking a recap of everything that Black Widow laid the foundation for.

9 Hawkeye's Confrontation With Yelena

This was the film’s way to set up the Hawkeye series, as it was already confirmed that Yelena will be appearing in the Disney+ show. Now, it’s certain that Yelena will be having a confrontation with Hawkeye that will see her attempt to take his life.

It’s also confirmed that there will be an arc of vengeance for Yelena to follow in the near future, as Valentina convinced her that Natasha died due to Clint. As far as setups go, this one should be paid off the earliest as the Hawkeye TV series is rumored to premiere this year.

8 Valentina's Targeting Of Superhero Figures

Having debuted in The Falcon and the Winter Soldier, Valentina’s motives were unaddressed and it was implied she had an interest in John Walker in particular. However, Black Widow has confirmed that she’s targeting superheroes at large when she recruited Yelena.

The next phase of the MCU should see Valentina pop up numerous times to manipulate superhero figures to her cause, and Black Widow indicates that she plans on taking down other superheroes using the ones she’s managed to join her ranks.

7 The Freedom Of The Black Widows

Black Widow went a long way in answering questions about the Red Room that fans had held for several years, with the ending revealing that Natasha freed all that were under Dreykov’s thrall. This could mean that all these assassins can turn up in the future.

The freed Black Widows will most likely follow suit and be part of Yelena’s future in the series, especially since she still has a lot to make up for after taking down quite a few Black Widows herself.

6 Rick Mason's Role As A Benefactor

In his first appearance alone, Rick became worthy of being one of MCU Phase Four’s best characters. He was revealed to be a former member of S.H.I.E.L.D. who remained loyal to Natasha and has resources for those in need.

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With Natasha gone, Rick’s role is set to be expanded in upcoming movies as a possible benefactor for other characters. The character could also assume his comics moniker of The Agent who’s a freelance mercenary. Since others like Hawkeye were also part of S.H.I.E.L.D., Rick’s resurfacing in similar stories should be a safe bet.

5 Thaddeus Ross's Confirmed Disdain For The Avengers

While some have felt that Ross’s incessant chasing after Natasha didn’t make sense in Black Widow, it was actually a way to establish that he has no intention of letting the Avengers slide. It not only ties into his cameo in Avengers: Endgame where he approached Maria Hill at Tony Stark’s funeral but also confirmed that fans should expect him to cause trouble in the future.

Since Black Widow is a Phase Four film, Ross’s hopes of nailing down the Avengers members is likely to be followed through with his later canonical appearance. After all, the Sokovia Accords are technically still in place, as shown in WandaVision, meaning Ross can appear in ensuing movies with the same agenda.

4 Addressing The Impact Of The Snap On Natasha's Family

Now that the likes of Melina and Red Guardian have been introduced, it’s safe to say that they will appear in the future, most likely in a Black Widow sequel. Moreover, this film never confirmed if Natasha’s family perished in the Snap, leaving it for a follow-up to address.

Since this is a vital piece of information -- it otherwise doesn’t make sense why they weren’t around Natasha during the five-year gap -- a future story in the MCU should confirm the whereabouts of Melina and Red Guardian, along with revealing what happened to them and Yelena during the Snap.

3 Yelena's Time As An Assassin

Her debut in the movie made her out to be one of the best characters, yet Yelena was shown to be an assassin by present-day events in the post-credit scene. This leaves out a significant gap for her story to be told as to how she got there.

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This will most likely be seen in detail in the Hawkeye series, although it’s also enough material for a second Black Widow movie to follow through with. Future movies featuring Yelena are, at present, set to detail her turn from a redeemed Black Widow into an assassin for hire.

2 Hawkeye's Account Of The Budapest Incident

Black Widow finally revealed that the Budapest Operation was about Hawkeye’s mission to eliminate Natasha and Dreykov, but he recruited her instead. However, Natasha didn’t go into full detail about Hawkeye’s role during the mission, leaving out subtle hints of his involvement.

Yelena’s confrontation with Clint in the Hawkeye series is thus set up for the latter to give his account of what happened in Budapest. After all, it wasn’t confirmed how he felt about using Dreykov’s daughter as bait, so it stands to reason that Yelena confronts her with this and for Clint to fully reveal specifics about the Budapest Operation.

1 Yelena As Natasha's Successor

This is the most natural progression for the MCU to take in the near future, as Black Widow was just as much as a swan song for Natasha as it was an introduction for Yelena to take over. Yelena is the natural successor to take the Black Widow spot if any formation of the Avengers comes back.

Her debut stuck close to the established ties to the Red Room, and her association with Natasha and guaranteed confrontation with Clint are all ways for the MCU to place Yelena as one of the leading superheroes for years to come.

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