Since the release of the black widow teaser trailer on Dec 3, 2019 fans have had questions about Red Guardian the character played by David Harbour so since you’re all curious we have facts for you. There’s more to know than you’d think. These are the Top 10 Shocking Red Guardian Facts You Need To Know.
1The Golden Age
The first Red Guardian debuted in the golden age of comics but only via retcon he was Aleksey Lebedev and debuted in Namor, The Sub-Mariner Annual #1 in 1991. This comic would establish him as a hero from that same time period who fought alongside Captain America.
He appears to have been killed during the purges of the 50s in experiments that led to his successor the version who had debuted before him. Sometimes there are retcons just to retcon. This appears to have been one of them.
2Only 1 Has Powers
Except for one or with rare exceptions or boosts from tech they don’t have powers it was actually a little odd since when Red Guardian was first fighting Captian America he told him he had been trained to go against him and could hold his own with a serum up Steve so are we just supposed to go with he was trained to be as strong cause Russia in Soviet Russia serum take you.
The one Red Guardian who has powers is Dr. Tania Belinsky. The others don’t need it they’re powered by their red costumes and Vodka.
Red Guardian would emerge out of Marvel’s renaissance period debuting in The Avengers #43 (August 1967) which saw a burst of new character creations for the newly named company, marvel only changed their name to marvel in 1961 alongside the release of the fantastic four.
The team that launches their renaissance as commissioned because of the success of the justice league. Alexi was an acclaimed world war 2 pilots who were chosen for a super-elite special test flight and because of his highly publicized missions, he became a public hero.
And was later recruited as a red guardian essentially captain soviet because Russia was reacting to Captain America even tho I mean cap was active in world war 2 so why did it you know what don’t overthink it.
He actually really got into his role and believed in the Soviet cause it would drive a wedge in his marriage but he would ultimately die heroically and epically.
4Here have been 7
7 people have gone by this name Legacy character to the max. The second person to hold that name Alexei Shostakov Is arguably the most iconic but people have their faves ok so that’s two who are the rest so we have Dr.
Tania Belinsky Josef Petkus Krassno Granitsky Anton and Nicolai Krylenko facts now you know the red guardians bounce around too despite being tied to Captain America they don’t all debut in his comics, for example, Alexi debuts in the Avengers.
This is one of those characters who is iconic within comics and yet outside of them some may not know who exactly they are. There are a lot of characters floating around like that and part of what is driving some of this fan, excitement is the fact that it’s David Harbour. Who many people are fond of thanks to his work on Stranger Things.
This is dr Tania and she is a bit different than your typical red guardians in that she adopted a costume similar to them and so were associated with but really was a bit of a rebel. She was a neurosurgeon who turned to vigilantism after her father was sent to Serbia as a dissident.
She fought to protect dissidents and attempt social reform so hardly the symbol of the homeland that they would have liked to be carrying the red guardian mantle. However, she would leave Russia when the doctor strange requested her specifically to perform a brain transplant.
She would stay in America and join the defenders it was after this she would get her powers and it’s not exactly happy she would be dominated by the presence who would transform her using a Chernobyl like a blast and then manipulate her to his whims.
Her and the presence would eventually find a balance and she would later take on the name starlight. Dr. Tania was the second red guardian.
6Life Model Decoy
These characters tend to have run-ins or in the case of one iteration just be life model decoys or less for the hip amongst you.
So Alexi was rendered a life model decoy in the latter part of his existence in the widowmaker crossover and this led was out for blood he was assassinating spies and eventually had his sights set on Black Widow and mockingbird who were the focus of this team crossover.
But let me dial it back some of you may be asking just what is a life model decoy well a life model decoy is an android in the marvel universe who can mimic all outward aspects of a real person.
And they’re good most people don’t notice them, it’s always a big plot reveal. Nick Fury was revealed to be using them all the time at one point.
There was a throwaway joke about them in The Avengers. Now aside from Alexi one of the Red Guardians was just always a less and that one was Anton the 6th red guardian although it was a weird partial thing.
So what is the context of his captain America connection and can he beat him. Let them fight. So Red Guardian is as mentioned the Russian equivalent of Captain America and he’s more than capable of going toe to toe with him he even damaged his shield so it could boomerang back to him no shield blasts while fighting the red guardian.
Cap even thinks has captain America met his match I’m more concerned that he’s thinking about himself in the third person. I also like that when Cap rallies he calls him a good fella.
The concept of other countries having their own captains has been bandied about before we’ve got Captain Britain and up here in the great white north we have Captain Canuck, Yes, Captain Canuck he’s he sure exists.
The Red Guardian is yet another character to take on the name Ronin what will that mean for the MCU it remains to be seen we got to see Hawkeye as Ronin so we will see what the future holds.
However, the Ronin Alexi cause it was Alexi who this happened with the cause of course it was. He was and the LMD version. So we don’t have to think of all those bad things he did as our Alexi.
You know red guardian has actually been adapted before like in cartoons and the like it’s an interesting situation. Maybe he’ll pop off now he’s all over the outlet’s people want more Red Guardian or just more David Harbour not as Hellboy.
9From Russia With Love
One of the Red Guardians is a reference to 1957 in fleming spy novel from Russia with love how well let me explain so this red guardian is the fifth to appear in the canon narratively chronologically from a meta standpoint it would be a bit different cause of that 1991 reboot issue.
He is named Krassno Granitsky he appears in maverick #10 in 1998 and his name is an homage to the assassin in that story Donavan Grant it’s actually the Russianized version of
that name which is fitting cause Donavan’s moniker was Grant. Spy references hooray.
10Marriage To Natasha
That’s right Black Widow and red guardian were married he was her husband from early on back when she was still a ballerina.
Their marriage was pretty solid up until the point where he became a red guardian and he would go full gung ho for the motherland but she would become more and more disillusioned.
And their marriage would fall apart after Natasha defected to the united states and he remained loyal to Russia but she still had a soft spot in her heart for her first husband.