The newest episode of The Falcon and the Winter Soldier certainly delivered on the promises made by its creators. There has been a lot of talk about a major cameo in the show's penultimate episode, played by an award-winning performer that fans were sure to recognize instantly. The cameo came about 15 minutes into the episode, and certainly took viewers by surprise, but it wasn't actually planned to be the character's debut in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. They were supposed to first appear in Black Widow, but the pandemic delays caused a shift in plans.
WARNING: This article contains major spoilers for the latest episode of The Falcon and the Winter Soldier! Continue reading at your own risk...
If you're still reading, you probably know that the surprise character is none other than Contessa Valentina Allegra de Fontaine, the longtime Marvel villain known to some as Madame Hydra. She's played in the MCU by Emmy-winning actress Julia Louis-Dreyfus, typically a comedic actress who certainly brought her trademark wit to the fast-talking role.
According to a report from Vanity Fair, Louis-Dreyfus has been readying to make her MCU debut for a while now, initially filming something for Black Widow. However, that film was supposed to have come out back in May of 2020, and it still hasn't seen the light of day thanks to the pandemic.
So this is a surprise that has been in the works, but what does Fontaine's debut in The Falcon and the Winter Soldier mean for Black Widow? Did this end up altering what her initial role would have been in the feature film? Unfortunately, we probably won't know until Black Widow hits theaters later this summer.
That said, we're going to be seeing plenty more of Fontaine in future Marvel projects. Vanity Fair's report also confirmed that Marvel Studios has big plans for her in the future, and that she could be a lasting villain going forward in the MCU. Think of her like a slightly more villainous version of Nick Fury. Interestingly enough, Fontaine and Fury actually had a romantic relationship in the comics, until she was revealed to be a Russian operative.
What did you think of the big cameo in The Falcon and the Winter Soldier? Where do you think Fontaine will pop up next? let us know in the comments!