Appearing in "The Black Widow Strikes Again!"
- Iron Man (Tony Stark) (Main story and flashback)
- Nikita Khrushchev
- Black Widow (Natasha) (Main story and flashback)
- Crimson Dynamo (Boris) (Only in flashback)
- Igor (First appearance)
- Stansky (Only appearance)
- United States of America (Main story and flashback)
- New York State (Main story and flashback)
- Washington, D.C.
- Soviet Union
- Tony Stark's Anti-Gravity device (First appearance)
- Iron Man's Briefcase
- Iron Man Armor Model 2 (Main story and flashback)
- Black Widow's Suit (Main story and flashback)
- Crimson Dynamo Armor Mark I (Only in flashback)
Synopsis for "The Black Widow Strikes Again!"
After months of working on an anti-gravity device to no avail, Tony Stark arrages its circuits at random out of exasperation, causing the machine to miraculously work. The device causes a gizmo to float above Stark's head, and Happy Hogan saves him from being crushed by its fall. As a result of being caught off-guard by Happy's rescue, Tony drops the anti-grav device, causing its wires to fuse. While it still works, he can't analyze its make-up to recreate it.
The following day, Stark tests the device in the Pentagon. A reporter that had gotten in the restricted area gets a scoop, and the existence of the anti-grav device is reported by a diary. Said news arrives in the USSR, and Nikita Khrushchev states stealing said weapon would have been a perfect job for the Black Widow, if only he could find her, following the frustration of her latest mission at the hands of Iron Man. However, the Black Widow, who is still hiding in America, acquires the information on the device by herself, and plans to steal it to get back in the USSR's good graces. She writes a letter to Tony Stark, hoping to reconcile with him.
A day later, Tony arranges a date with Madame Natasha. The genius inventor seemingly falls for Natasha's charm, and shows her the anti-grav device. After a little demonstration, Natasha uses a paralysing gas on Tony, and runs away with the anti-gravity machine. After Pepper finds him unconscious, Tony recovers from the assault and ponders that he had underestimated the Black Widow. He had merely pretended to trust her in order to learn of her plans, but he didn't think she was going to act so fast. Tony suits up as Iron Man and goes looking for Black Widow, while he recalls his past encounter against her and her late partner Boris.
After using the anti-grav device to steal jewelry, the Black Widow calls to Moscow and asks Khrushchev if she's forgiven. Khrushchev forgives her, and sends his men to track down Black Widow's call in order to help her. Meanwhile in Washington, a senator is interviewed by the press regarding the theft of Stark's invention, and he states Stark's behavior was borderline criminal negligence, generating negative press about Stark's loyalty to his country.
Back in his lab, Tony gives up on trying to recreate his invention and gets back to looking for the Black Widow. The villainess attacks Stark's factories, causing objects to float and destroy the facility. Iron Man returns to his plant and repairs the damage, but the Black Widow has already targeted another facility.
Later that night, the Black Widow is surprised by the arrival of three fellow agents who had been sent to help her. One of them is eager to try Stark's invention, and uses it on a car. The floating car catches Iron Man's attention, and the Golden Avenger picks up the car and throws it at the origin of the anti-grav ray. He easily takes care of Black Widow's fellow agents, but she uses a reverse mechanism in the anti-grav ray to pin him down while she escapes, and then raises the building and lets it fall, crushing Iron Man beneath it. In the time it takes for Iron Man to escape from the rubble, the Black Widow and her agents travel to Fort Knox.
She uses the device to lift an entire mountain, and neutralize the tanks and army forces charging at her. Iron Man arrives and slows the descent of the tanks, before moving on to Black Widow. He uses a proton electronic charge that destroys the ray's output, rendering the anti-grav device useless. With the ray out of action, the mountain begins to fall, and Black Widow takes her chance to escape, while Iron Man rescues her fellow agents that were about to be crushed.
Minutes later, Iron Man debriefs two soldiers about the fate of the anti-grav ray, and the two military men thank him for "correcting" Tony Stark's "bumbling mistakes."
Appearing in "The Omen"
Races & Species:
- Venturites (First appearance)
- Gamma anti-matter guns
Synopsis for "The Omen"
- Synopsis not yet written
Appearing in "The Way it Began"
- Prosilicans (First appearance)
Synopsis for "The Way it Began"
- Synopsis not yet written
- Starting with this issue, the cover title of this series becomes "Tales of Suspense Featuring the Power of Iron Man."
- This story takes place between the events depicted in Avengers #5.
- The Black Widow last appeared in Tales of Suspense #52 (last issue); She appears next in Tales of Suspense #57.