The Avengers: A ‘Widow’ history

Pathfinder Infinite

Have you seen the latest clip from the upcoming The Avengers movie featuring Scarlett Johansson as the Black Widow? It is an incredible 43-second sneak-peek of Marvel’s red-headed badassette kicking butt while being beautiful and bound to a chair at the same time. WARNING: Please adorn your drool bib before clicking the play-button.

The Black WidowThe Black Widow (AKA Natalia “Natasha” Alianovna Romanova, AKA Natasha Romanoff) made her first big-screen appearance in the Iron Man 2 film in 2010, but she has been a part of Marvel Comics since 1964 when she debuted as a Russian villainess (with a very different look) going up against Iron Man in Tales of Suspense #52. It looks like The Avengers director Joss Whedon is teasing at Ms. Romanoff’s red-leaning roots in this new clip where she lays waste to a band of (what appears to be) KGB thugs. I can’t wait to see how much of her origin is going to be revealed in the new movie.

The scarlet Soviet seductress/spy has covered a lot of ground in the Marvel Universe. She was once brainwashed into fighting the Avengers ( Avengers #29 – 1966) but finally changed her evil communist ways and defected to the United States where she eventually joined the super-team and even had a stint as their leader. She has also played major roles on Marvel super-teams The Champions, S.H.I.E.L.D. and the Thunderbolts. S.H.I.E.L.D. (Supreme Headquarters International Espionage Law-enforcement Division) of course plays a big part in the upcoming film as well.

HowkeyeIn the cool new Avengers clip, Natasha is told that “Barton” has been compromised, just before she throws down with her captors. “Barton” refers to Clint Barton, AKA Hawkeye (portrayed by Jeremy Renner in The Avengers movie), who was introduced to the Marvel Comics universe by Natasha when she used her alluring abilities to convince him to steal technology secrets from Tony Stark (Iron Man in Tales of Suspense #57 – 1964). The master marksman was pardoned for his mistake (who could blame him) and he too eventually joined The Avengers (Avengers #16 – 1965). He even changed-up his hero persona for a bit and was called Goliath, when he used Henry Pym’s size-changing technology to grow into a “giant-size” hero.

If you want to get better prepped for The Avengers movie opening May 4, and learn more about the Black Widow, Hawkeye and the other characters in the film, Marvel Comics online has a plethora of archived comics and wiki reference material for your perusal. Most of the digital comics allow a sneak peak for at least the first few pages before you have to pony up a payment to see the whole thing.

If you want to get really “assembled” for the new Avengers movie, get tickets to the Ultimate Avengers Movie Marathon that includes back-to-back screenings of Iron Man, The Incredible Hulk, Iron Man 2, Thor in 3D, Captain America in 3D and then the premiere of The Avengers in 3D! It’s all starts at 11:30 a.m. on May 3 at the AMC Westgate 20 in Glendale.

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