No doubt that if you're here you've read today's SHH headline regarding the Kevin Feige announcement/promise that the team behind Marvel Studios is opting to move forward with a stand-alone BLACK WIDOW film with Scarlett Johansson. For a long time now the Avengers' most prominent female member (sorry Wasp, Wanda, and Ms Marvel) has been treated as second-tier to the bigger guns in the business. It's not surprising, first and foremost she's a female superhero and unless you happen to be one of the conveniently-bodice-torn-babe that's ELEKTRA, there's little chance that you're going to get much respect in the comics world. Sad but true. Unlike the Ladies at DC, Marvel Babes are physically stronger (Jean Grey and the X-Women, Spider Woman, Sue Storm vs. Diana Prince, Lois Lane, Catwoman, and either Black Canary, Oracle or that blonde cheerleader), the subject is open to debate but the more recognizable Marvel Babes are indeed superhumans, whereas in DC the most recognizable ladies are (while being equally beautiful and brilliant to their Marvel foes) strong-women. For the Black Widow this serves as one of the main reasons why unsuspecting fans don't easily accept her -- she's a non-powered heroine in a super-powered community, and the leather-clad fanbase is already sold on Selina Kyle (or Elektra Nachios). It's even more baffling because (while a different character altogether) the persona of 'The Black Widow' dates back to the Golden Age - a female protagonist in a comic book who predates Wonder Woman, and we just let her become a cameo in an Iron Man sequel (okay fine this incarnation of the Widow debuted in IM, still doesn't make it right though).Coupled with the fact that she's also an ex-KGB spy, most fans these days just don't like the overtly Tom Clancy-esque "COLD WAR" b.s. making the Widow an anachronism of sorts. I say NAY. And when David Hayter struggled hard to establish her spy-based anti-heroine tale of espionage in a script, I was more than thrilled. While that never saw the thaw of the sun, with IM2 we got a sneak peak at what a Widow film would look like, and I was more than just sold when I saw Johansson taking out the Hammer Guards in that sweep motion. It was a hint that there can be darker places in the Marvel Universe, that there are Marvel Knights or Maidens just as dark and realistic as those 'grim and gritty', cowl-totting goths at DC. More importantly, the Widow's very grounded approach contrasted with Tony Stark's robotics so much in that one pivotal moment, that it screamed a higher degree of realism. In fact, I was hoping they mention the Vanko-connection with the Black Widow, and when they didn't (which was okay for IM2, it kept the film focused) I started a short story on a Cinematic-Universe Black Widow. With what we've heard today, it will hopefully not be just another fan-fiction anymore, but a reality. A Black Widow film would work brilliantly. Yes, there are skeptics as usual who underrate Johansson's ability as an actress, who question a strong female lead carrying a film (blind to such great examples as BUFFY, ALIAS, TOMB RAIDER or even RIPLEY who did the same thing through YEARS), and who are even more skeptical about a film in the spy-genre. Still there are those who think that a DAREDEVIL reboot is a better option given the dark nature of the character. DD comparisons are inevitable because the two characters are known to have shared more than just crossed paths in the comics, and I am a huge fan of DD, but I want this to be a Black Widow film -- Daredevil and Punisher can have their respective films if they want. There are those skeptics, but there are also supporters and fans who can nullify the delinquent rants. I for one am looking forward to this, and if this is the first post-Avengers film that carries on the universe, then all the more better. Who knows? Maybe it'll be a Hawk Eye crossover film, or even include a more prominent Nick Fury and S.H.I.E.L.D. presence. It should be a spy-film after all. And if they use the old David Hayter script that was just as dark and grim as ... oh I dunno, his adaptation of The Watchmen (or the first two X-Men films, or Ang Lee's quite-more-serious-when-compared-to-TIH 2003 film)? Then we'll be watching a spy film written by Solid Snake. Let this be an opening thread to all things Scarlet (spidey excluded).