Name: Yelena Belova
Superhero Name: Black Widow
Created By: Devin Grayson and J.G. Jones
Played By: Florence Pugh
Powers: Peak athletic condition, master martial artist and spy. After being experimented on by Hydra, she can now adapt to any person’s powers.
Mini Bio: Yelena, like Natasha Romanoff, was raised in the Red Room to be a Black Widow. When Pyotr, her trainer, was killed, Yelena was activated as the new Black Widow and sent to investigate. After she killed the person responsible, she believed herself the rightful successor to Natasha, and ends up confronting her while on mission.
Instead of battling each other, Natasha encouraged Yelena to become her own person, instead of blindly following the Red Room’s orders. After Natasha manipulated her into seeing the truth about espionage, Yelena retired to Cuba to become a model and business woman.
S.H.I.E.L.D. lured her back in again though, and after receiving burns during a battle, is convinced by Hydra to get revenge on the Avengers and S.H.I.E.L.D. To heal her from her injuries, Hydra experimented on Yelena, transferring her mind into the body of a Super-Adaptoid – a human/machine hybrid. This body gave her the power to absorb other people’s powers, which meant that she very nearly defeated the Avengers.
Since then, Yelena has fought on the side of good and bad, but has only taken on the mantle of Black Widow once, after Natasha was killed during the Secret Empire event, to honour Natasha’s legacy.
First Comic Appearance: Inhumans Issue 5 (1999)
Most Common Team Ups: S.H.I.E.L.D., A.I.M., Hydra
Comic Recommendations: Marvel Knights: Black Widow (1999), Black Widow: Pale Little Spider (July 2002)