Gone are the days when viewers only cared about heroes and entirely detested the antiheroes. At times like these, the villains are becoming more popular than the protagonists because of their striking, unique, sinister qualities that sometimes justify their wrongdoing. MCU’s upcoming superhero film Thunderbolts will reintroduce one of its powerful villains, Valentina "Val" Allegra de Fontaine, in a much bigger role.
In her recent appearance at Jimmy Kimmel Live, Julia Louis-Dreyfus revealed the true nature of Valentina, given that her previous appearances provided confusing sentiments on whether she lands as the hero or villain. “I think she sort of straddles both worlds of good and bad. I think it’s a little bit unclear. It’s certainly unclear to me,” she said.
The actress continued narrating, “When they were telling me about this, the head honchos at Marvel, they’re all wonderful people, and they were explaining to me the character and who she’s gonna be dealing with and this universe and that universe and I’m listening, listening — I’ve had a similar experience as when I’m listening to my accountant tell me about my taxes; I’m trying really hard to focus, you know what I mean? But anyway, I just keep asking my boys, explain to me what this means.”
Valentina has made appearances in three Marvel productions so far: Black Widow, The Falcon and the Winter Soldier, and Black Panther: Wakanda Forever. Throughout these films, Val has met with various villains as she tries to recruit them for her team, despite not disclosing any more of her motives as to why. However, in her most recent appearance in Black Panther 2, the true color of the shady MCU character became more apparent when she desired to acquire the nation's vibranium.
Val is considered to be the evil version of Nick Fury, and more of her wickedness is expected to be showcased in Thunderbolts. Her character’s motivations are usually driven by the shared benefits that she will receive from the other party with whom she negotiates. She distorts the truth about Natasha's death in the Black Widow post-credit scene so that Yelena will go after Hawkeye, believing he is to blame.
Additionally, Valentina recruits John Walker after he is dishonorably discharged as Captain America in The Falcon and the Winter Soldier. She is a classic manipulator who believes that "all is fair in war." Her upcoming appearance in Phase 5 of the MCU will establish the menacing quality that will set her apart from the other Marvel villains.
Thunderbolts is slated for a July 2024 release.
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