Comic Book Review – Black Widow #1

Writer – Kelly Thompson

Artist – Elena Casagrande

I traveled to Phantom of the Attic on Friday, December 11th to pick up a months’ worth of pull list comics. I always take a walk down the comic racks to see if I missed anything or if I want to try a new series. I picked up Black Widow #1 to give to a friend for Christmas and I decided to read it before I do so.

First, the Adam Hughes cover is breathtaking and one of the reasons I was drawn to picking this issue up off the shelf. Second, I, like other fans of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, have been patiently waiting for the release of Black Widow since May. This series was to coincide with the release of the movie in a nice bit of synergy, but the pandemic has prevented Natasha’s solo debut on the big screen from happening. If you need a super-spy, action/adventure fix, picking up this series is a good way to get it.

Natasha is sent to steal a flash drive and does so without any problems and delivers it to Captain America. She returns home to find someone has broken into her apartment. Before she can discover who it is, she gets hit in the neck with tranquilizer darts.

Three months later, its revealed that Natasha (now going by Natalie) has made a new life for herself in San Francisco. She is walking the streets of the city when she passes through the shot of a news report. Clint Barton sees this on his television back in New York City and calls Bucky Barnes immediately. Both men agree to travel to San Francisco to track Natasha down. The issue ends with Natalie returning home to her boyfriend and her mansion, as the two are being monitored by the supervillain that is pulling the strings of Natasha’s new life.

The villain revealed at the end of the issue is one we have seen many times previously, but one we have never seen mix it up with the Avengers before. Any guesses on who the big bad is? I am curious to see what their motivation is behind Natasha’s new life and if she will start to realize it’s a ruse.

I’ve spoken before about how Kelly Thompson has a proven track record with female heroes and characters. She has done it once again with Black Widow. The sequence at the beginning of the book where Natasha breaks into an apartment to steal the flash drive is beautifully illustrated by Grandecasa. Natasha entering the hallway toward the apartment and fighting henchmen is fluid and a lot happens in this short sequence rendered in a double spread splash page. It reminded me of the fight scene in the original Oldboy.

This is my first foray into the world of Natasha Romanoff and I like the direction the story is going so far. It’s only a matter of time before her perfect life starts to come crashing down around her and I can’t wait to see what happens once Natasha discovers the truth. Hell hath no fury like a woman scorned. The mastermind behind this charade is going to be in a world of hurt once Natasha gets her hands on them.

Next Issue – “Widow No More?” Something is very wrong with Natasha Romanoff: she’s – happy?! Retirement definitely agrees with the world’s deadliest woman as she revels in the perfect life she never even dreamed she could have. But scratch the surface of that perfect life and you’ll find something very wrong- and a woman like Nat just can’t help but scratch.

Black Widow #2 is currently available now.