‘Web of Black Widow’, ‘Valkyrie: Jane Foster: Volume 1’ Offer Great Characters and Characterization

For those of us who love the Marvel Cinematic Universe, this week has already been a relatively busy one when it comes to news. We got a new trailer for Black Widow, which arrives in theatres this May. Then came word that not only will Christian Bale be playing the villain in Thor: Love and Thunder, but that the Guardians of the Galaxy will also be a part of the Taika Waititi film. On that note, there have been some new releases that tie-in nicely with those very topics:

Web of Black WidowWeb of Black Widow
Writer: Jody Houser
Artist: Stephen Mooney

Web of Black Widow is a recently compiled mini-series that finds Natasha Romanov being set up for a series of assassinations, all while she’s trying to get her life back together following her death and resurrection coming out of Secret Empire.

Writer Jody Houser crafts a solid story that deals with much of themes MCU fans gave come to love about the character of Black Widow; her skills, the ongoing effects the Red Room had on her, and her attempts to align her loner nature with the family that she’s formed with the Avengers. Houser and artist Stephen Mooney crafted a solid spy story here, and in advance of the upcoming film, The Web of Black Widow makes for some solid prep reading.

Valkyrie.jpgValkyrie: Jane Foster Vol. 1: The Sacred And The Profane
Writers: Al Ewing, Jason Aaron
Artists: Cafu

When Thor: Love and Thunder hits theatres in 2021, we’ll see Natalie Portman’s Jane Foster take on the mantel of the God of Thunder, a concept that came out of writer Jason Aaron’s excellent Thor run. In the current Marvel comics universe, Jane is no longer Thor but is instead now imbued with the power of the Valkryie, the beings charged with bringing fallen Asgardians to Valhalla.

The news series, written by Al Ewing, finds Jane getting to know her new powers and role, using some unexpected villains like Bullseye and the Grim Reaper as antagonists. Ewing has Jane’s voice down pat, and the series feels epic in nature while also giving the character a sense of awe at her lot in life. As I was reading this compilation, I couldn’t help but think how much Jack Kirby would appreciate the tone and Cafu’s artwork.

While Valkyrie: Jane Foster is breaking its own ground, it’s also managing to tip its hand to the legends of the past.


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