Super Types

January 14, 2018

Character Spotlight: Black Widow

She’s become one of the most recognizable spies in the world, you’d think that’d be a problem but she probably likes the challenge. She’s gone from working in the shadows to being a prime member of the Avengers. How does someone become one of the most capable and best assassins, spies, combatants, and dancers around? Let’s find out!

Natalia “Natasha” Alianova Romanoff was born sometime in the 1920’s in what was then Stalingrad, Russia. She’d live there with her mother until the building they resided in was burned down, leaving Natasha an orphan. She’d be taken in to be trained as a child soldier with ballet dancing being the cover for the girls’ training. Natasha excelled in the¬†work and would gain the attention of the KGB’s Red Room training program. She’d be inducted and given a variety of physical augmentations that would allow her to stay young far longer than normal human beings. She’d be trained by and work with the mythic Winter Soldier for many years. She’d gain the title of Black Widow as on of Russia’s deadliest agents.

Decades would pass with her enhanced lifespan allowing Natasha to be at the top of her game in the spy trade. She’d assassinate many over the years. Her heart was merely there for the mechanical need to keep her blood flowing. She’d do missions that she’d later regret in her present day and feel the need to spend most of her heroic career trying to make up for. When the rise of new heroes began to occur, with the likes of the Avengers and Fantastic Four becoming prominent, she’d be assigned to uncover what she could about them using espionage. It was her mission to work with Clint Barton, Hawkeye, that would cause her to have a crisis of faith. She’d jump ship and leave working for Russia to become a S.H.I.E.L.D. agent and Avenger.

Natasha would have to first prove that she was on their side and win over her teammates, which was easy for someone who was used to charming her way but she also was now trying to do so earnestly. She’d take some time to get used to the hero way of dealing with enemies since she was used to just shooting first and finding answers elsewhere. She would eventually leave team work so she could do something she’d never really had before, some alone time for herself. Here she’d end up finding other heroes who liked to work alone and end up working with them, each gaining a respect for one another.

 

Her encounter with the vigilante Daredevil would become a major one, she’d begin dating him and the two would move in together for a time. When things didn’t pan out after a period, thought they’d stay friends, she’d go on to Los Angeles to join the superhero team, the Champions. Working with them for a time, she’d find herself feeling the need to work alone again. She’d do some part-time work with S.H.I.E.L.D. which would become a common part of her life, S.H.I.E.L.D. was somewhat a stable aspect of her life. She’d be surprised to find that the Winter Soldier was still alive and to learn that he was Captain America’s old best friend from World War II. This would take up a big part of her life as she helped him acclimate to the current era. This would get even more wild as the superhero Civil War began and Natasha would work with S.H.I.E.L.D. and even run it for a brief time.

She’d find herself working more and more with those who were once anti-registration when she had been for and registered when Norman Osborn took over S.H.I.E.L.D. She’d often still be working with Nick Fury, even going undercover as a fellow Black Widow for the Thunderbolts team. Thus, Natasha was pretending to be a villainous Black Widow while being the good Black Widow to do classic Black Widow work. When Osborn was kicked out and the world slowly started to settle back into as normal as it can be, Natasha went back to working with S.H.I.E.L.D. and the Avengers. This would go well until her past came back to try and take her down. She’d end up on the run with S.H.I.E.L.D. effectively burning her and having to clear her name and find out who was trying to kill her. She’d find herself all the way back to where her career as the Black Widow truly started and had to fight another dancer who’d been trained like her. She’d make it out and then learn that Steve Rogers was now being a Nazi and knew she couldn’t just let that stand.

Helping fight against Rogers and his Hydra goons, she’d train the new Champions team, who were now a bunch of teenagers. She’d take to them as a mentor and all the while, doing her own black ops missions to try and stop the spread of Hydra. It was seen by an Inhuman with prophetic powers that Mile Morales, Spider-Man, would kill Captain America, Natasha didn’t want this kid having to enact this and did everything in her power to make it be her who would take on that burden. Sadly, she’d die protecting the kids, almost causing Spider-Man to kill Captain America until the Wasp was able to talk him down, reminding him that it was Natasha’s wish that no child, especially him, become a killer like she had to. Rumors have circulated that Natasha may still be alive out there somewhere, somehow.

There you have it! Black Widow has become one of the most popular Marvel characters thanks in part to the Marvel films. She’s definitely a fan favorite and has been one of the most desired solo films of any of the Marvel Cinematic Universe characters. Hopefully those rumors that always seem to rumble about come true and hopefully they bring her back sooner rather than later in the comics. See you next time!

Suggested Reading
Tales of Suspense #52
Black Widow Vol. 1-6
Black Widow: Widowmaker
Marvel’s The Avengers: Black Widow Strikes

Dr. Bustos
drbustos@comicattack.net

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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