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Widow Maker

Jim McCann's Hawkeye & Mockingbird meets Duane Swierczynski's Black Widow in a super spy saga for the ages

By TJ Dietsch

Winter won't be a very good time to be a spy in the Marvel Universe thanks to writers Jim McCann and Duane Swierczynski. The pair will be collaborating on Widow Maker, a four-part crossover that will take place in HAWKEYE & MOCKINGBIRD #7-8 and BLACK WIDOW #9-10 starting in December and running through January.

"It's always been in the cards to do something between the books once we found out HAWKEYE & MOCKINGBIRD and BLACK WIDOW would be launching around the same time," McCann shares. "It's a logical crossover; there is a shared history between Hawkeye and Black Widow, the books operate in the world of super hero super spies, and the fans have been asking for this since the books were announced. So, give them what they want!"

"What's fun is that when I was given a shot at BLACK WIDOW, a lot of the ideas I had dovetailed perfectly with what Jim had in mind," Swierczynski says. "I love happy accidents like that. And I couldn't ask for a better collaborator-Jim's enthusiasm is absolutely infectious."

What kind of espionage escapades will bring these characters together? A very familiar face-or rather mask-has been killing spies from different agencies and has their sights set on Black Widow and Mockingbird.

"[The killer is] wearing a very familiar costume: the Ronin suit," McCann reveals. "As for who is inside of it taking out spies and heroes all over the world, the motives for that, and the person pulling the strings, you'll have to read it to find out!"

Though the duo wants to keep some surprises for the book itself, Swierczynski does offer a few details about this new Ronin's motives.

"I will give you one hint: If someone's taking out/neutralizing spies all over the place, it would stand to reason that someone, somewhere, wants the world temporarily blind and deaf," the writer teases. "But for what?"

HAWKEYE & MOCKINGBIRD #7 and BLACK WIDOW #9 linked covers by Paul Renaud
"You'll learn a lot about the history of the Ronin and what makes it a legacy," McCann adds. "There's a secret behind the costume we will be exploring."

Longtime fans of the shadier side of the Marvel Universe filled will see plenty of familiar faces as the story continues, McCann promises. The writer also says the story will appeal to fans of old school crossovers.

"I have always loved it when two books cross-over, and this is no different," he says. "I think it's fun because these are characters that it makes sense for them to interact. It's a lot of work, though! I have a ton of respect for those who have done these before!"

Of course, when teaming on a crossover with another writer, a good working relationship must exist, and McCann says that's exactly what working with Swierczynski has provided.

"Duane came in and he brings a wealth of knowledge of the espionage world and some really crazy cool ideas and directions to take the story in," McCann says. "I couldn't ask for a better partner in this.  And it's awesome because the story we have fits perfectly in with the directions we wanted to take both of our books. He is just as committed to making this be one of those events that alters everyone involved. Widow Maker will set up and blow up the pages of both BLACK WIDOW and HAWKEYE & MOCKINGBIRD. I can tease that at least one character will come away from this with the biggest change they have ever faced, something everyone agreed on and that the fans will be shocked by. And all of this has been because of Duane and the editors involved. We are one big team ready to deliver something people will talk about for a long time!"

"Seriously-McCann is a madman," Swierczynski says. "His ideas and the crazy stuff he dug up from true-life espionage cases are going to make this crossover one to remember. I'm already hoping for a sequel: Widow Maker 2: Widow Harder."


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