Black Widow

Books: Graphic Novel | Super Hero | Marvel

The Finely Woven Thread (2015), The Tightly Tangled Web (2015), Last Days (2015)

The Finely Woven Thread (2015) Nathan Edmondson and Phil Noto

The-Finely-Woven-ThreadOh, I liked this one lots!

I have not seen the Avenger movies, or read any of the Avenger comics–I just know tangential bits picked up from here and there (because: geek).


Natasha is the Black Widow, who was formerly a Russian (Soviet?) agent who is now attempting to atone for her past.

In this book we see her taking on several cases–cases working with bad men, but perhaps not the worst. It's hard to find good in her line of work.

Throughout the story she talks about how she is alone–how she has to be alone. She cannot care for anyone, for to do so makes her vulnerable.

But as the story progresses, we see she is fooling herself as much as anyone else.


Of course, the best part is that she's way more awesome than James Bond, although like Bond, she has cool toys and an incredible tolerance for pain and abuse.

I also love how she's drawn. She's feminine and definitely female, and when she is in her apartment, she seems almost frail. But she is strong and takes action.

I really really like this, and can't wait to read the next two in the series.

Published by Marvel

November 2015 | Rating: 9/10

The Tightly Tangled Web (2015) Nathan Edmondson and Phil Noto

blackwidow9This is the second volume of Nathan Edmondson's Black Widow run, and although I enjoyed it, parts of it were difficult to follow because I am not immersed in the Marvel Avengers world. Winter Soldier, Punisher–apparently Black Widow appeared in these stories, and they integrated those lines back into her story, but for these, if felt like something was missing, even with the backstory blurbs.

black-widow-x23Interestingly, X-23 appeared, and although I have read some of her story lines, it didn't seem to matter, for the part she played here.

Mind you, I really really like X-23 / Laura, so I was predisposed to be happy to see her, and I now want to check out more of what she's been doing since I last read about her.

Or perhaps I just really like damaged and complicated female characters.

Actually, there's not really a perhaps about that.

black widow vol 2I particularly liked the art in this book–this series, truly.

Natasha and Laura are very much drawn like real women (as are the other female characters) and interestingly, when Laura made her first appearance, I felt like I should know who she was (as I did), despite the fact she was drawn quite differently than the earlier volumes I'd read. Laura tends to have a dead-eyed look and shows almost no emotion, and the depiction of that allowed me to recognize her–which impressed me.

The drawback, as I said, is that there were storylines from other characters here, and I felt like I was missing a lot, rather than being interested in learning more.

I'm thinking, however, that integration might have been imposed from the outside, so I don't really want to hold it against this volume too much.

Published by Marvel

December 2015 | Rating: 8/10

Last Days (2015) Nathan Edmondson and Phil Noto

black-widow-volume-3This is the closing volume of the Black Widow trilogy, and was very — difficult and depressing aren't quite the right words, but much of it was hard to read.

We see glimpses of Natasha's past through the story, and the volume closes with the start of her career with the Red Room. It was a very difficult way to close the book, and it served to remind us who she truly was, and what she came from.

black-widow-phil-notoAs with the previous versions, the art is wonderful.



Despite the darkness of the ending, and despite the story threads involving other Marvel characters with which I was not familiar, I still highly recommend this series.

Published by Marvel

December 2015 | Rating: 8/10