There is never a lack of routine (seeming) individuals working for the world's many government institutions in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, despite many superheroes and villains in that universe. One of the newest recruits to the shadowy ranks of the Marvel Cinematic Universe is Contessa Allegra de Fontaine, portrayed by Julia Louis-Dreyfus, well known for her roles in Seinfeld and Veep. If you've been following the Marvel movie franchise, you already know that Fontaine regularly appears in several heroes' adventures.
The Falcon and the Winter Soldier was the first time that appeared in the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU), but it was not the last time we saw her. She also appeared in the mid-credits sequence of Black Widow, where she recruited Florence Pugh's character, Yelena, into her service. And now, in the sequel to "Black Panther," she's returning for another appearance. So, where exactly are we headed with this?
[Ed. Warning: The following narrative reveals essential plot details about Black Panther: Wakanda Forever.]
The debut of Fontaine in Black Panther: Wakanda Forever is Louis-Dreyfus' most prominent part to date in the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU), but it continues along the same line of being quietly ominous as she has previously nailed it so effectively in her first two appearances. Everett Ross (Martin Freeman), Shuri's ex-husband and the current director of the CIA, has been leaking classified material to Wakanda since she saved his life in the first movie. In the film, Fontaine is the new head of the CIA, and her former husband, Everett Ross, is her direct employer.
Fontaine spends most of this film as an adversary of Wakanda because she believes the nation is responsible for obstructing the efforts of other countries to harvest vibration. Her goal is to assist the United States in acquiring vibranium. However, in the broader scheme of things, this looks to be nothing more than a pitstop for Fontaine as she proceeds toward her subsequent appearances and heftier objectives. Although she and Everett aren't vital to the story, in the end, this seems to be little more than a pitstop for Fontaine.
The Falcon and the Winter Soldier establishes Val as an anti-Nick Fury, enlisting John Walker's disgraced "Captain America" for an unsaid project that may use his more murderous inclinations. Devoted Marvel fans are aware of this. From this point on, the Marvel Cinematic Universe could follow the comics almost anywhere.
IN THE COMIC BOOKS, WHO IS CONTESSA VALENTINA ALLEGRA DE FONTAINE?
Depending on when you ask this question, she is either a former Italian jet-setter who has been working for SHIELD for a very long time or... Madame Hydra.
Jim Steranko first presented Valentina in 1967 for a crossover tale involving Nick Fury and Captain America. The following year, in 1972, writer Steve Englehart incorporated Valentina into the main Captain America comics. Because she plays such a small role and has been around for a long time, the Marvel Cinematic Universe can pick up nearly any element of her escapades and run with it.
During her time as a SHIELD agent, Valentina had a brief romantic relationship with Nick Fury. (Here's a helpful hint: if you work for a company where more than half of the staff are sleeper spies, you shouldn't date anybody who works there.) She also managed an all-female squad of covert agents for a period. It is subsequently revealed that her Italian origin was a cover narrative and that she was a Russian spy; this seems to be a different direction than the MCU is headed, but who knows!
Valentina did the last thing in the continuity of Marvel Comics to defect and become a senior head of Hydra, taking on the frequently used name "Madame Hydra," until she betrayed Hydra to another covert international spy operation. This was the last thing that happened to Valentina in Marvel Comics. Valentina is an option that the Marvel Cinematic Universe may consider if they want Hydra to rear its scaly head again.
Alternatively, the Marvel Cinematic Universe might decide to go another way that has nothing to do with the object that comic writers have done in the past with Valentina. Her next confirmed appearance will be in the film Thunderbolts, which is scheduled to be released in 2024. In this role, she would, in principle, be in charge of a group of less-than-noble, Avengers-related soldiers. Yelena Belova, played by Florence Pugh; John Walker, played by Wyatt Russell; Red Justice, played by David Harbour, Taskmaster, played by Olga Kurylenko; and Ghost are all set to join the crew (Hannah John-Kamen). Will Everett Ross, a character from Black Panther, or another citizen of Wakanda, possibly accompany them?
Don't even try to speculate; if there's one thing we know for sure about the version of Valentina that appears in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, it's that she can do anything she wants, wrangle anybody, and show up wherever she wants.