Avengers: Age of Ultron debuts today in the USA and two cast members got themselves in a bit of hot water while promoting the picture this week. Via International Business Times “Jeremy Renner, Chris Evans Apologize For Black Widow Comments After ‘Avengers: Age Of Ultron’ Interview”:
“Avengers: Age of Ultron” stars Jeremy Renner and Chris Evans apologized after they made offensive comments about the character Black Widow. The actors were being interviewed by Digital Spy when they were asked what they thought about the comic book heroine (played by Scarlett Johansson) being with Bruce Banner (aka the Hulk). Many fans were upset with their responses.”
Please note — Jeremy (who plays the Avenger Hawkeye) and Chris (who portrays Captain America) got in trouble for offensive comments made about the entirely fictional character Black Widow.
They did not insult Scarlett Johansson, the actress who plays Black Widow (aka Natalia Romanova aka Natasha Romanoff) Who would do that? Ever?
Their comments were directed at the fictional character — and that’s what got them in trouble. This may be a first for Apology Index.
So what did our trash-talking thespians say that was so bad? Read on…
When asked by Digital Spy about the character Black Widow’s flirtations with the other superheroes, Renner responded “She’s a slut,” and Evans, laughing, added that she is a “complete whore.”
Black Widow fans were not happy, and expressed their unhappiness on Twitter and in other venues, which you can go look for yourself, because we need to get to the apology part.
(No word from the fictional Black Widow as to whether she took offense. But if you know anything about that character, you know that by the time you knew she was mad at you…you’d already be dead.)
The lads soon realized the error of their ways and released statements to the media:
Evans said: “Yesterday we were asked about the rumors that Black Widow wanted to be in a relationship with both Hawkeye and Captain America. We answered in a very juvenile and offensive way that rightfully angered some fans. I regret it and sincerely apologize.”
Renner added: “I am sorry that this tasteless joke about a fictional character offended anyone. It was not meant to be serious in any way. Just poking fun during an exhausting and tedious press tour.” (IBT)
One of these things is not like the other. True to character, Captain America shows us how to take responsibility for his actions and express sincere remorse. Also true to character, Hawkeye comes across a bit surly and not really sorry at all.
Seriously, this is just like the comics. It’s all very meta.
Can you spot the differences between the two apologies? Here is a hint from a random Twitter user quoted in the IBT article (because your Apologist is always happy to let the Internet do all the work):
— MikeBrendan (@MikeBrendan) April 23, 2015
This is almost lab experiment good. Two actors apologizing at the same time for essentially the same offense and we see, side-by-side, what to do and what not to do.
Cap/Chris states what he did wrong, expresses remorse and regret, and apologizes. Hawkeye/Jeremy gives the old “conditional apology-was just kidding-insert excuse here” routine. He’s not really sorry and we all know it. But that’s Hawkeye for you.
At this writing, I’ve not seen Age of Ultron, so I don’t know what flirting cinematic Black Widow does in the film. I do know that comic book-version Black Widow has slept with Hawkeye, Iron Man, Daredevil, the Greek demigod Hercules, her late husband Red Guardian, and perhaps a few other paramours over the character’s 50+ year history.
But Black Widow isn’t a slut. She’s a femme fatale. That’s completely different.