Marvel Comics Sneaky Preview: Black Widow #4

Nathan Edmondson & Phil Noto’s Black Widow is just one of many books that has tried to recreate the surprise success of Matt Fraction & David Aja’s Hawkeye… but it might be the most successful.  The first few issues of the series were done-in-one thrillers that found Natasha confronting her past while Edmondson built the beginnings of a supporting cast for her.  With Black Widow #4, the series will introduce a major new enemy and ground Natasha’s arc in the battle that has defined her character for decades.

Phil Noto continues to do astounding work on the title, beginning with the absolutely gorgeous cover above.  Reviews of the series have been generally positive, but Noto’s art has drawn a lot of attention to it for all the right reasons.  Grim and stylish with lovely, slightly muted colors holding you at just a bit of a distance, Noto’s noir-tinged art makes every issue of Black Widow an event.

In an interview with Comic Vine, Edmondson suggested that this was the issue where the series’ overarching picture would become apparent:

CV: What will this series deal with?

NE: We’ll get a much clearer picture come issue 4, but Black Widow has wandered into a dark, twisting maze, and we might feel the chill of Cold War winds blowing soon. But is it the old Cold War, or a new one?

It’ll be interesting to see how the book handles the return of Cold War anxieties, a conflict many younger readers really may not be able to relate to.  That said, the solicit for the book suggests that the new conflict focuses more on global terrorism.  It seems like conflicting messages – cold war and modern terrorism don’t seem to mesh too well – but I’m definitely intrigued.  And I can see why Edmondson wants to recreate that atmosphere, as it gave us many of the best spy thrillers and espionage action stories ever told, as well as a host of indelible characters that have stuck with us for years.

Check below for the solicit, and then for a brief preview of the book, which hits shelves March 12th, 2014.

This March, the runaway hit of All-New Marvel NOW! continues with another exciting chapter! Marvel is proud to present your first look at BLACK WIDOW #4 from the critically acclaimed creative team of Nathan Edmondson and Phil Noto! From the cold streets of Russia emerges a powerful new villain. Enter – the Hand of God! And the Widow’s life will never be the same. Outmatched, outclassed, and outgunned by the Hand of God’s sheer brute force, Natasha fights for her life against her merciless new foe. The pieces are in play and the clock is ticking. The Hand of God’s globe-spanning terror plot has been activated. Is the Widow enough to stop it? She’ll have to survive first! Jump on to the sensational All-New Marvel NOW! series that has everyone talking! Don’t miss BLACK WIDOW #4 this March!

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