“Black Widow” is full of layered surprises and heart, from Florence Pugh’s huge little-sister energy to Rachel Weisz’s stunning pig mind control. But truly the next breakout star in the Marvel Cinematic Universe is David Harbour as Alexei Shostakov, a.k.a. the Red Guardian.
In Alexei’s first few moments on screen, he flips a car, rides a plane as it takes off and forever betrays his fake daughters, little Natasha Romanoff (Scarlett Johansson) and Yelena Belova (Pugh). And that’s not even the truly insane part of this character’s arc. Decades later, he tops himself again by appearing as a washed-up super soldier, stuck in a prison rotting away with nothing but his fading tattoos to show for his years of of dedication to the cause.