Natasha Romanoff’s secretive past is a core part of her character’s story arc over the course of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, but a final trailer for Black Widow promises to explore the moment she became the world’s top spy.
The new trailer focuses on two different parts of Natasha’s past: her time in the Red Room and life with her family. The Red Room, which fans briefly caught a glimpse of in Avengers: Age of Ultron, is a top-secret Soviet training program. The program brainwashes young girls, turning them into lethal assassins and spies. Natasha learns in the new trailer that Taskmaster, Black Widow’s primary villain, is responsible for brainwashing a new class of soldiers.
It’s up to Natasha and her family, specifically Yelena (Florence Pugh), to help take him down for good. The trailer leans heavily into the relationship between Yelena and Natasha, and fans of Pugh will be delighted to see that she’s just as charming in the role as she is in prior films she’s done. Pugh and Johansson are joined by David Harbour who plays Alexei — The Red Guardian, a sort of Russian Captain America — and Rachel Weisz as Melina.
Another familiar face appears halfway through the trailer that longtime MCU fans will know well: Thaddeus Ross. Ross is known for two things: leading the hunt for Bruce Banner in The Incredible Hulk and approving the Sokovia Accords in Captain America: Civil War. The latter is most important in this context. The Sokovia Accords split up the Avengers, with Steve Rogers (Captain America), Bucky Barnes (Winter Soldier), Wanda Maximoff (Scarlet Witch), Sam Wilson (Falcon), and Scott Lang (Ant-Man) opposing the Accords, and Tony Stark (Iron Man), Peter Parker (Spider-Man), James Rhodes (War Machine), and Romanoff approving of them.
Rumors suggest that Black Widow will take place in the two years between Captain America: Civil War and Avengers: Infinity War when the teams reunited to try to defeat Thanos. Many of the Avengers are still on the run — including Steve and Bucky, who Romanoff let get away after Civil War’s biggest fight. Ross could be on the hunt for the renegade Avengers, hence his reason for being in the movie, and in the United States no less.
Still, this is all speculation! Answers will be given on May 1st when Black Widow hits theaters.