Captain Marvel and Deadpool writer Kelly Thompson launches Black Widow

Marvel's Captain America: Civil War..Black Widow/Natasha Romanoff (Scarlett Johansson)..Photo Credit: Zade Rosenthal..© Marvel 2016
Marvel's Captain America: Civil War..Black Widow/Natasha Romanoff (Scarlett Johansson)..Photo Credit: Zade Rosenthal..© Marvel 2016 /

Black Widow is about to star in her first film and, now, she’s getting a new ongoing comic series.

It’s been about three years since Black Widow has had her own ongoing comic book series. She’s been featured in a few miniseries over the years, but her death scene in 2017’s Secret Empire cut off her monthly presence. Yet with a new movie coming up soon, it was inevitable that Marvel Comics would allow her to star in her own series again. As announced exclusively on IGN, Eisner Award-nominated writer Kelly Thompson has been tapped to pen her next regular series.

Slated for April 2020, Black Widow No. 1 will go on sale by Kelly Thompson (writer of Captain Marvel, Deadpool, and Star) and artist Elena Casagrande (Catwoman, Batgirl, and Hulk), with Adam Hughes drawing the covers. As told to IGN in an interview, Thompson plans to set Natasha in San Francisco, California and weave a plot involving guest stars and a gang of villains bent on revenge. Secondary Black Widow Yelena Belova and Russian superhero Red Guardian will also be featured within the series. By sheer coincidence, they will also be in Black Widow’s film

Although she was not the first Marvel heroine named Black Widow, the super-spy everyone knows and loves was first created by Stan Lee, Don Heck and Don Rico in 1964’s Tales Of Suspense No. 52. She initially began as a Cold War-era vixen and enemy of Iron Man, in a drastically different purple and caped costume.

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The costume most fans associate with Natasha was designed by John Romita Sr. in 1970’s Amazing Spider-Man No. 86, as inspired by TV shows like The Avengers (especially Diana Rigg/Emma Peel) and The Man From U.N.C.L.E. She’s gone on to become a longtime Avenger, even briefly leading the team in the 1990s. California being her base of operations is not a new idea, as she’s operated there with the Champions, the West Coast Avengers, and even during her longtime partnership with Daredevil in the 1970s.

Other comics that Thompson has written have been based in California as well. Kate Bishop’s run in Hawkeye and her tenure mobilizing the West Coast Avengers were all set there. It will be interesting if Thompson picks up on some of the dangling subplots from those two series. Namely, that Madame Masque had organized her own incarnation of the “Masters of Evil” there alongside M.O.D.O.K., Graviton, Lady Bullseye, the Eel and Satana. Thompson vows to have a coalition of villains unite against Natasha but, aside from Damon Dran and Madame Hydra, enemies for Natasha get slim. And considering that Thompson already had Black Widow guest star in two issues of Captain Marvel, it may be likely that Carol Danvers gets in a cameo.

As for Red Guardian, he was created by Roy Thomas and John Buscema in 1967’s Avengers No. 43, during one of Natasha’s long stints with the team. The original was Alexei Shostakov, but there have been five subsequent versions ever since. Yelena Belova, created by Devin Grayson and J.G. Jones in 1999’s Inhumans No. 5, is a Black Widow who was trained in the “Red Room” after Natasha and began as her enemy before joining forces with her (at times).

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It is another big book for Kelly Thompson, who is a Marvel exclusive writer. It remains to be seen what adventures and tribulations the Black Widow is about to see in her comics this spring.