The Plugged In Show, Episode 85: Black Widow and the State of the Superhero Union

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As the world slowly shakes off the chill of COVID-19, what’s the surest sign that things are getting back to normal? Superheroes are in bloom.

Wonder Woman 1984 hit theaters (and HBO Max) in April. Disney+ has been awash in characters from the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Now Black Widow—arguably the highest-profile film postponed because of the coronavirus—is just a day away from release, coming both to theaters and to Disney+ (via a $30 premium charge for the latter).

For this podcast, the Plugged In team straps on its collective cape, strikes a particularly powerful superhero pose and talks about Black Widow—what we liked about it, what we didn’t, and just where it fits into Marvel’s ever-growing cinematic universe. But we don’t stop there, of course. We opine about superheroes in general, and some of the deeper issues that we can suss out of these quintessentially American stories.

If you’re a superhero fan, this episode’s for you. And if you’re not, you just might smile, laugh and learn something anyway. Up, up and away! (Oh, and check out our closing questions, and links to everything we talk about below.)

  • Questions for Conversation with Your Child:
    • What character(s) did you connect with and why? Who do you most relate to?
    • Who do you think acted the most heroically in this story, and why?
    • What character qualities do you think are most important in a hero?
    • How can you, either individually or as a family, make a difference for someone in need somewhere in your world this week? 
  • Interaction question: If you could be any superhero, who would it be and why? Let us know on Facebook or Instagram, which you’ll find at Pluggedinteam.
Paul Asay

Paul Asay has been part of the Plugged In staff since 2007, watching and reviewing roughly 15 quintillion movies and television shows. He’s written for a number of other publications, too, including Time, The Washington Post and Christianity Today. The author of several books, Paul loves to find spirituality in unexpected places, including popular entertainment, and he loves all things superhero. His vices include James Bond films, Mountain Dew and terrible B-grade movies. He’s married, has two children and a neurotic dog, runs marathons on occasion and hopes to someday own his own tuxedo. Feel free to follow him on Twitter @AsayPaul.