Black Widow, Vol 2: The Tightly Tangled Web
author : nathan edmondson
illustrator : phil noto
pages : [paperback] 160
favorite character : nat
On a snowy night in Prague, Black Widow must fight her way out of disaster alongside the Winter Soldier! And as Isaiah’s London business turns complicated, Natasha finds herself fighting against — or alongside? — the Punisher for access to a deadly criminal network. But trapped on an exploding oil rig with Crossbones and his Skull Squad, will Frank and Natasha complete their missions — or take each other out? Then, Hawkeye is back! But could his fight with the Widow cost Isaiah his life? And in the wake of Wolverine’s death, Black Widow bonds with the despondent X-23 over punching and espionage, and teams up with the Howling Commandos for a dangerous mission in Afghanistan. But what will the Avengers do when they learn how Natasha has been spending her days off?
Collecting BLACK WIDOW (2014) #7-12 and PUNISHER (2014) #9.
I loved this! I picked up this volume right after I finished the first one, so I was able to dive right into the story. Nat is still trying to piece together exactly what foe is out there who’s been thwarting her and she has some unexpected allies on the way, with appearances by Daredevil, Hawkeye, the Winter Soldier . . and plenty of other heroes that I’m sure I’ll recognize eventually, but because I’m not completely schooled in comics yet kind of passed over my head. There was like a lady Wolverine? She was cool. I have no idea where she came from, nor how Nat managed to bring her on board on a mission, but I was entirely accepting of it. Y’know, in the moment.
There’s SO MUCH action in this book, but the art is just beautiful. It’s nothing like what you’d expect with comic art. It’s hard to describe, because I’m not an artist at all. It’s kind of minimalistic, muted, watercolor-y. It’s great.
I love the whole undertone of “is Nat actually a good guy” running underneath this entire volume. She’s kept so much of her life, her choices, even her motivations a secret, so her closest friends can’t figure her out. Even Daredevil needs to listen to her heartbeat to try to determine if she’s lying to him. It seems like she’s never able to stop lying, not even in her personal life. I liked seeing that inner turmoil, even though it was a little heartbreaking.
It was a little weird to have Anderson Cooper do a report on Nat in the middle of the book. I’m wondering if he enjoyed being in a comic like this. But it really pulled me out of the story because, y’know, that’s part of the real world and everything else about this–the espionage, the intrigue–is all more amped up.
If you love Black Widow, you’ll love this volume. If you don’t love her yet, then you just haven’t started reading.