By Chris Samnee, Mark Waid, Matthew Wilson, and Joe Caramagna
Black Widow #1 takes you on a wild ride through the offices of S.H.I.E.L.D. and through the streets of New York City as we open Black Widow’s new solo series from the acclaimed Daredevil creative team of Chris Samnee, Mark Waid, and Matthew Wilson. The action is non-stop and the book is unapologetic with page after page of in-your-face fighting fury. After a few pages, and once you can catch your breath, the pieces of the puzzle start to fall together. We find our heroine outrunning S.H.I.E.L.D. operatives and there is little explanation why. This issue is a spectacular showcase for the Black Widow being a fantastic spy who pummels obstacles and large men with grace and tenacity throughout the issue.
Samnee, Waid, and Wilson are certainly one of the best creative teams in the business and it is exciting to see them continue their teamwork and collaboration following their successful run on Daredevil. Seeing this creative team take on a character like Black Widow and give her the time and attention to build a great story arc is a dream come true. The premiere issue is action-packed and it does not stop throughout the entire issue. Waid and Samnee work together with art and writing to really find new creative ways to tell a story with few words. The effort and time this team took to plot out every page, and every panel to have the story and art flow so seamlessly comes from the trust and rapport this team has. This book is a terrific example of telling a great story with little words and a lot of illustration, and serves as a prime example of showing and not telling everything to the readers. The panels keep you enthralled and on the edge of your seat until the very last page, which leaves the readers ready for more.
This book is just a powerhouse of art masters working together to create a model comic book. Samnee, unsurprisingly, did a tremendous job finding ways to show so much movement and emotion in every panel. The color art from Wilson and the lettering from Caramagna, who both kept the tone and feel of the comic tightly fast-paced, beautifully complement the work from Samnee and were both clearly bringing their A game to this issue. The bold, thick lines and neutral color palette highlighted with black and reds keep the pace of the story fast and furious. The panel layouts are great for showing more exposition each page than narration or dialogue could ever do. Some pages have many panels crammed together to create the tight faced pace and tension of sequences and other pages are little less crowded and it gives you time to really soak in the panel and the background.
This creative team really comes together to tell a fantastic spy story that leaves you on the edge of your seat. It is nice to see Natasha Romanoff front and center as the lead for this spy drama and really showing what a formidable super spy she is. Samnee and Waid come together and showcase their talents to tell a great story with all art and few words. With this first issue starting this new series with such a bang, it is exciting to see what more we can expect from this creative team and Black Widow.