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The Odd Job That Black Widow Took For An Undercover Operation

Black Widow (Scarlett Johansson) is one of the most integral characters in the Marvel Cinematic Universe's Infinity Saga. From her first appearance as Tony Stark's (Robert Downey Jr.) new assistant in "Iron Man 2" to her tragic and heroic death in "Avengers: Endgame," the former assassin better known as Natasha Romanoff was not only an important player in all the Avengers' missions; she also proved herself to be a beloved friend to all her fellow superheroes. 

Audiences were thrilled when her long-awaited solo film "Black Widow" hit theaters in July 2021, finally giving Marvel fans more insight into the heroine's horrifying Red Room days and also showing us some of what Natasha got up to while on the run from the U.S. government after the events of "Captain America: Civil War." More than nearly any character, Natasha's time in the MCU was shrouded in mystery and secrets, as any good spy's life should be. However, devoted Marvel fans will remember a detail about Natasha that was subtly revealed during her very first appearance in the MCU in "Iron Man 2."

Black Widow worked undercover as a model

Natasha first appears in the series under the pseudonym Natalie Rushman, appearing to be simply the newest Stark Industries hire with a surprising talent for hand-to-hand combat. Tony Stark, still somewhat stuck in his playboy ways, is taken by the beautiful Rushman, and immediately looks more into her past. He discovers photos of her modeling lingerie in Tokyo, cheekily asking his newly appointed CEO Pepper Potts (Gwyneth Paltrow) if she did the same. However, these photos aren't the result of Black Widow taking a brief hiatus from her spy duties. Rather, her modeling was simply a cover operation as she carried out a mission in Japan.

Natasha's days as a model never come up again in the MCU, and likely were just a reason to show Scarlett Johansson in her underwear. As the only female Avenger during the early days of the MCU, Black Widow was often hyper-sexualized, which Johansson herself has publicly criticized. However, Natasha eventually got the character development she deserves. Black Widow may have died in the MCU, but it's clear her best friend Clint Barton (Jeremy Renner) and surrogate sister Yelena Belova (Florence Pugh) will continue to honor her legacy through their own future stories, whatever they may be.