'Tales of Suspense' Comic Will Explore Life After Death for Marvel's Black Widow

Secret Empire - Andrea Sorrentino Marvel Entertainment - Publicity -H 2017
Courtesy of Andrea Sorrentino/Marvel Entertainment
Did the super-spy somehow survive having her neck broken and subsequent burial?

In superhero comic books, it's hard to tell who's actually dead at any given time; with magic, super-technology and clones as part of the everyday landscape, just because a character has been seen to die on the page doesn't mean that they're actually dead. A new Marvel comic book series intends to play on this long-running trope, asking the question: Did the evil Captain America kill Black Widow or not?

Announced Thursday on the ABC News streaming show Inside Marvel, Tales of Suspense will feature both the Winter Soldier and Hawkeye trying to uncover the truth of whether or not Natasha Romanoff actually died when the fascist incarnation of Captain America apparently broken her neck during a fight. Sure, fans saw a funeral for her in this week's Secret Empire Omega issue, but they also saw a murder that seemed to have been committed by Natasha herself happening later.

"She died on national TV, so who’s out killing the people she wanted killed?" editor Alanna Smith asked, introducing the series, which will be written by Matthew Rosenberg, with art by Travel Foreman. "Bucky doesn’t think that it’s her. Hawkeye definitely believes it's her."

Given that Scarlett Johansson will play the character in next year's Avengers: Infinity War, it's fair to say that comic audiences haven't seen the last of her ... but could it be that she was never even dead in the first place?

As with many Marvel titles taking part in the upcoming Marvel Legacy promotion, Tales of Suspense will use "legacy numbering," taking into account previously published issues of a series bearing that name — in this case, the 99 issues published in the 1960s.

As a result, the first issue of the new series will, officially, be Tales of Suspense No. 100. The series launches in December.