With Black Widow having finally made its way into theaters, there has been one particular breakout star from the film, and her name is Yelena Belova.
We’ve known for a while that the torch of Black Widow would be passed on from Natasha to another character after the events of Avengers: Endgame, but up until this weekend, it wasn’t clear quite how that torch would be passed, even though it has been known for a long while that it was going to Yelena.
Now though, having seen the latest film in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, you may be wanting to get some more of the new Black Widow in your life, so why not dive into the comics where the character originated?
Minor spoilers for Black Widow follow.
3. Black Widow: The Itsy-Bitsy Spider
If you’re looking to start reading stories about Yelena Belova, there’s no better place to start than with her first appearance in The Itsy-Bitsy Spider. Written by Devin Grayson with art by JG Jones, this is the perfect story to start out reading with as it serves as two things. Yes, it’s the first appearance of Yelena, but it’s also the first Black Widow solo series, so it’s the perfect place to start if you want to read more with Natasha as well.
Basically, with this series, you get three issues of the fight between Natasha and Yelena inside Nat’s apartment in Budapest. The sisterly bond that the two have from the outset of the film is slow to develop within the comics, but that’s necessarily a bad thing. For much of the series, Yelena is on the hunt for Natasha so that she can become the top spy in Russia. It sounds relatively simple, but with spies and assassins, nothing ever really is, which is where much of the fun of the series comes from.
This is a very intense, character-driven story with lots of great action that very obviously served as influence, with both its tone and basic structure, to the film. It’s a wonderful, and short, story that you should absolutely check out.