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Black Widow’s Slow Transformation Over The Years (In Pictures)

Natasha Romanoff, a.k.a. Black Widow, is one of the most badass female superheroes in the MCU. Black Widow has proven countless times that she can seriously kick butt on-screen compared to her male contemporaries. However, in terms of looks, not only is she one of the most fashionable Avengers, but she is also one of the most recognizable characters due to her slick red hair and her famous black jumpsuit.

RELATED: 9 Ways The Black Widows Storyline Can Continue In The MCU

Considered as one of the first Avengers and the first female superhero on-screen, Black Widow featured several different looks throughout all her appearances in the MCU.  These changes include her hairstyle and uniform upgrades. Her character development also changes throughout each film, from a deceitful SHIELD agent to a dedicated and loyal friend.

Updated on July 29th, 2021 by Colin McCormick: Natasha Romanoff aka Black Widow managed to have an interesting evolution throughout her time in the MCU, despite the fact that she was never given a solo movie of her own. Finally, with the release of Black Widow, she is able to step into the spotlight and have her backstory explored in more detail. And with the character seemingly done in the MCU, the movie appears to be the final stage in the transformation of Black Widow throughout the years.

8 Iron Man 2 (2010)

Black Widow fighting in Iron Man 2.

Recruited by Fury as his top agent, Black Widow made her debut appearance as an undercover SHIELD agent, who was essentially babysitting Tony Stark. Her job as an agent was to deceive people like Pepper and Happy while also stopping Iron Man’s enemies Justin Hammer and Whiplash. She presented herself as being reserved, which was why she did not instantly befriend Tony Stark.

In Iron Man 2, Black Widow had a curly, long, and dark red hairstyle. She eventually revealed her bluish-black cat-suit, which was a SHIELD uniform. The cat-suit featured the SHIELD logo on her right upper arm along with a utility belt and thigh holsters that held her gadgets and guns. However, her black cat-suit had a second belt that featured the black hourglass symbol centered around her waist. Both her red hair and black suit became her signature look in future films and established the character to be a total badass.

7 The Avengers (2012)

In her first superhero team-up, she helped Fury recruit some of the Avengers to face Loki. While showing herself to be manipulative and untrusting, she was more friendly to her fellow teammates. Viewers also saw a more horrified Black Widow when Banner turned into the Hulk. Her reaction showed that the agent was not always as fearless as she appeared.

In The Avengers, Black Widow adjusted her hairstyle with a lighter red color and shorter length haircut to her shoulders. Her hair also goes from a very curly to a wavy look. This movie also started the Black Widow costume evolution as her suit had a slight change to black compared to the bluish-black cat-suit. Her uniform also added straps around her thighs. Lastly, her hourglass symbol on her belt had a different border with an inner layer of red and an outer layer of grey. This change makes her Black Widow symbol more noticeable.

6 Captain America: The Winter Soldier (2014)

Scarlett Johansson as Black Widow in Captain America Winter Soldier

In Captain America: The Winter Soldier, she showed an emotional side to her when she saw Nick Fury in surgery and cried when he died (even though it was a fake death). Her unusual response showed that she was never really a cold-hearted agent after all. She even took the situation personally to the point where she was looking for answers surrounding his supposed death.

RELATED: 10 Things That Make No Sense About The Black Widow Movie

Black Widow had one of her most unique looks with silky straight and long red hair. With some grey webbings, her stealth suit remained relatively the same with features like her holsters and belts. As for her hourglass symbol, the center appeared more white in the middle part, surrounded by an inner red border and an outer white border. Also, the hourglass symbols appeared more like a buckle for her suit. Lastly, she debuted her newest weapon, Black Widow’s Bite. It can discharge electrical blasts to electrocute her enemies.

5 Avengers: Age of Ultron (2015)

Scarlett Johansson as Natasha Romanoff aka Black Widow opening sequence Avengers Age of Ultron

Following the fall of SHIELD, Black Widow became a full-time Avenger. Black Widow was close to her Avenger teammates, especially Captain America and Hulk. She even showed herself to be a great and caring aunt to Barton’s children. However, the film also focused on Black Widow’s dark past, which depicted her feelings of regret.

Black Widow returned to her short shoulder cut hairdo from The Avengers. In Age of Ultron, her suit had some upgrades. This suit was the first to ditch the SHIELD logo on the right arm. Her bracelet changed to red color from her usual black bracelet. Her uniform also featured blue electrical strips that were around the edges of her suit to add additional electrical power to her Widow’s Bite. Lastly, this suit only showed one belt from her usual two, which presented her hourglass symbol held tightly around her waist.

4 Captain America: Civil War (2016)

Scarlett Johansson as Natasha Romanoff aka Black Widow airport fight Captain America Civil War

Following the tragic events of Lagos, Black Widow decided to become diplomatic to help regain the public’s trust. Her position even seemed unusual, given her past as a former agent. She tried to do what was right, which meant souring her friendship with Captain America and Hawkeye. Despite her attempts to remain a mediator between two conflicting sides, she was dismayed with the outcome and eventually switched sides to support her close friend, Captain America.

Black Widow once again transformed her shorter hair to a longer one in Captain America: Civil War. Her hairstyle is a combination of her hairstyle in Iron Man 2 and The Winter Soldier with a layered haircut that is wavy at the sides. As part of Team Iron Man, her recent uniform was made of Kevlar fabric, giving it a glossy and smooth texture. Her bracelet also goes back to the black color. In addition to her Widow’s Bite, her latest uniform included batons to add more weapons for fighting.

3 Avengers: Infinity War (2018)

Her biggest transformation occurred in Avengers: Infinity War. While she continued the pattern of sporting short hairdos for Avengers films, she no longer appeared with her famous red locks. Instead, she appeared with straight and blonde hair which became one of the fan-favorite Black Widow hairstyles. Due to the impacts of Civil War, Black Widow became a fugitive and therefore had to go into hiding, which meant changing her signature features.

RELATED: The 10 Best Characters In Black Widow, Ranked

Like her hair, her uniform was different from her previous ones. She now wears a green vest over her all-black jumpsuit. While she still had the straps and belts to hold her gadgets, her suit no longer featured her hourglass symbol, which was likely covered her from her vest. However, she still carried her batons.

2 Avengers: Endgame (2019)

Scarlett Johansson as Natasha Romanoff on Vormir in Avengers Endgame

After surviving the snap, Black Widow took a leadership position while communicating with other superheroes across the universe. However, she was devastated by the events of Infinity War. She lost her friend and failed to stop Thanos, which took an emotional toll on her. Throughout these five years, she realized how the Avengers were her family. She was willing to do anything to protect them. This leads to Black Widow sacrificing her life for the soul stone and to save the day. By the end, she was no longer the reserved agent from Iron Man 2 and became one of the most caring and wholehearted Avengers.

After five years, her red hair look returns with blonde ends.  This hairstyle was also the first time that Black Widow braided her hair on missions. In Avengers: Endgame, Black Widow returned to her famous suit with added pads and knee armor. Her uniform also added shoulder straps to hold her batons. However, her uniform still featured her holsters, belt, and Widow’s Bite. Her hourglass symbol returned as a form of a belt around her waist. Black Widow also made a brief appearance with her white, red, and black quantum suit so that she can time travel.

1 Black Widow (2021)

Split image Scarlett Johansson as Natasha Romanoff in white suit and black suit in Black Widow

Set between Captain America: Civil War and Avengers: Infinity War, Black Widow finds Natasha facing her traumatic past and redeeming herself for past sins. She also reunites with the colorful characters who make up Natasha’s first family, including her little sister Yelena. It is the rawest and most emotional Black Widow has ever appeared.

Her hair is longer than usual in this movie, showing some time has passed since Captain America: Civil War. She even ties it back for combat at times and she is shown at the end of the movie changing to the blonde hair seen in Infinity War. Since she is on the run, Natasha borrows a Black Widow costume from Melina, which is black with armor padding. She also dons a nice white costume for her snowbound mission at one point. Her belt further displays her Black Widow symbol with a silver center.

NEXT: 9 Ways Black Widow Sets Up The Future Of The MCU


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