Captain America: Civil War really shook the MCU to its core with the reveal that Bucky Barnes a.k.a. Winter Soldier killed Tony Stark's parents, Howard and Maria. Fans were absolutely shocked to learn about this twist (kind of). Some would be lying if they said they didn't see it coming or didn't learn it from the small Easter Egg in Captain America: Winter Soldier.
However, The Starks were not Bucky's only victims. In Captain America: Winter Soldier, Black Widow confirmed that he has been credited with over two dozen assassinations in 50 years. His targets ranged from scientific minds to political figures, including US President John F. Kennedy in 1963. His other targets are mostly unknown at this point.
When Was Winter Soldier's Last Known Target?
One of his last known assassinations was an unnamed nuclear scientist who was being smuggled out of Iran by Black Widow in 2009. Winter Soldier attacked them in Odessa, Ukraine, firing a bullet that went through Black Widow's abdomen, hitting the scientist and successfully killing him. So, we can assume that Winter Soldier has been assigned assassination missions at least until 2009.
Peter Parker's age is currently determined to be about 16–17 years old, which would put his birth year around 2000–2001. It is very possible that Parker's parents were one of Winter Soldier's many targets over the course of five decades.
What's The Story With Spider-Man's Parents?
In comic book lore, Peter's parents — Richard Parker and Mary Fitzpatrick — were intelligence agents for the CIA recruited by Nick Fury. While on assignment, Richard and Mary were assigned to infiltrate the Algerian-based spy ring controlled by the Red Skull. The moment the Red Skull learned that the couple were double agents, he had them killed by one of his agents in an airplane crash overseas and framed for treason.
This all took place while Peter was just an infant. After his parents' deaths, his Aunt May and Uncle Ben took over as his guardians. All this evidence could point to the fact that HYDRA wanted to wipe out the spy couple.
Why Would Spider-Man's Parents Be Targeted By HYDRA?
Richard Parker was recruited to the CIA by S.H.I.E.L.D. Director Nick Fury, and up until 2014, one of Nick Fury's closest allies was Alexander Pierce. At the time, Pierce was one of the highest-ranking leaders of HYDRA and decided Winter Soldier's targets. Pierce was also aware of Richard and Mary's missions through S.H.I.E.L.D.
Between the years of 2000–2001, HYDRA influenced several world events, including Bill Clinton's presidency and sending astronauts Will Daniels, Taylor, Brubaker and Austin through the Monolith to survey the planet on the other side of the portal. However, one of the most suspicious activities occurred in 2003 during the Iraq War (an event that was proven to be orchestrated by HYDRA).
So, it would seem that there was a lot of suspicious activity between the years 2000 and 2003, especially overseas. It is very possible that Richard and Mary were sent overseas sometime during that time to investigate the war in Iraq, and HYDRA felt they were getting too close to the truth. Pierce, who was considered a close ally, knew the perfect time to hit them. Winter Soldier could have placed a bomb on their plane, much like how one of Red Skull's agents did in the comic books.
It would explain why Peter Parker's parents are no longer in the picture. Since Kevin Feige declared that the #SpiderManHomecoming sequel will basically be Civil War 2, the plot could surround the mystery behind Richard and Mary's disappearance and why they're considered traitors. It wouldn't be the first time #Marvel surprise us with an Avengers-crushing twist.
Do you think Winter Soldier assassinated Spider-Man's parents?