Monday, June 27, 2016

Black Widow #4 Review - Marvel Mondays


Written by:  Chris Samnee and Mark Waid
Art by: Chris Samnee and Matthew Wilson
Cover Price: $3.99
Release Date: June 15, 2016
Publisher: Marvel Comics

I'm sure that you've read a couple of introductions telling you each of the Weird Science Get Fresh Crew's background with Marvel Comics.  If so, this will surely be the shortest.  I am jumping into the Marvel pool headfirst with any swimming lessons whatsoever.  Don't get me wrong, I have done my homework, but just like when we started this site to review DC Comics, I am going to go for it and learn on the job.  Because of that, I hope you all are nice enough to not only ease my way in, but to help me.  Let me know if anything seems amiss, but be gentle...I have a very sensitive soul.  Now that I've done begging, on with my review for Black Widow #4...

Mark Waid and Chris Samnee have done a great job to this point in establishing this books tone.  It's pretty much non-stop, kick ass action with a sprinkling of mystery and intrigue that makes each issue in the series such a quick, yet satisfying read.  The art and script are both equally important in the storytelling and because of that, you have to pay close attention to both.  That is usually a big problem for me (ADHD in the house!), but not here.  Like Eric Shea at McDonalds...I'm lovin' it!

The issue opens with a little blurry look at the results of last issue's cliffhanger before we head back into the past.  We see another interaction between Natasha and Anya, but this one seems a little more confrontational than the last.  It's very quick, but sets up what we learn next...Anya has set up a new version of the Red Room that made Black Widow.  In fact, we've already seen that the school has at least one ace pupil...the one that gutted Natasha at the end of last issue.

Waid and Samnee then let us in on what the Weeping Lion sent Natasha to Russia to get...a list of everyone associated with the original Red Room.  That also means going head-to-head with the new "Dark Room" and to do that, she needs a whole lot of guns and training from an old Red Room associate, Iosef.  I smell montage!  Since we are in Russia, it had to include "Hearts on Fire", right?

Wrong!  Sadly, we just skip ahead twelve hours and Natasha is ready to rock and heads off for a fight. The issue then flips into awesome, silent mode as we see Black Widow infiltrate the Dark room and head for a bit of a shocking reunion.   That's not half as shocking as what happens.  If you were expecting a fight, you will have to wait a bit longer.

The issue ends with Natasha able to say mission accomplished up until another reunion that really throws a wrench in the works.  Or does it?  We all have to wait and see, but you can be sure that I will be back to find out.

I have enjoyed this entire series up until now and this issue is no exception.  Waid and Samnee continue giving readers a great combination of story and art and I am so glad that this was one of the first Marvel books I chose to review.  It's funny, I am not a big Black Widow fan at all and have no real history with the character outside of the Avengers movies, but after four issues, Waid and Samnee have made me a fan.

Chris Samnee and Matthew Wilson's art is so much part of the storytelling that it seems odd to even single it out.  Single out I will, though, and mainly because it kicks total ass.  Seriously, I could just page through the issue without reading any words and know what's going on and smile at how great it all looks.

Bits and Pieces:

This is a damn good book!   The biggest compliment I can give it is I was never a Black Widow fan until now.  Mark Waid and Chris Samnee are giving readers a crazy combination of a deep story filled with mystery and intrigue that is also a quick read filled with butt kicking action.  I can't wait for next issue.

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