Black Widow: Bad Blood is a serialized novel released in a new episode/chapter every week on Serial Box. Today I’m recapping and reviewing episodes nine and ten so beware of mild spoilers for all episodes so far.
At the end of episode eight, Natasha had finally infiltrated the VECTOR Institute. Episode nine – “Black Tie” – sees her and Bucky making their way to Geneva in order to intercept billionaire philanthropist Allan Holt at one of his rare public appearances. Appearances in general are, in fact, critical to this episode. The pair’s tactical gear simply won’t cut it at a black-tie gala populated exclusively by the rich and the even richer, so it’s time for a shopping trip. Here the story goes full-on fanfic as Natasha and Bucky fail to hide that they are clearly gazing at one another, so much so that the latter is rendered near-speechless by Natasha in a midnight blue silk dress. It’s fluffy and ridiculous and I am here for every single word of it!
This episode is squarely less-action, more-affection throughout. As they drive to the airport, Natasha and Bucky trade reminiscences of their previous shared missions and it’s heartbreaking for both us as readers and Natasha as his friend to see Bucky attempting to piece together the fragments of memory that remain from his countless memory wipes. Bucky’s fear at being forced back into Winter Soldier mode is palpable throughout the whole story but it’s in these moments that we really feel for him.
This is a powerful episode that slows things down before the final push as the story draws toward its conclusion, but despite the levity of dress shopping and occasional gazing, the tension is still there. Natasha has recognized the signs that the second wave of her illness from Chicago will hit her imminently. She knows she only has hours to solve this before she is incapacitated again and that level of personal vulnerability is the one thing she cannot allow.
Episode ten – “White Nights” – opens with the pair making their way to the black-tie gala they prepared for in the previous chapter. Natasha and Bucky use all their previous training to slip inside the party relatively unnoticed and begin their search for Allan Holt, but it’s at that point when everything comes crashing down around them. The situation they encounter isn’t like any of the scenarios they had planned for and soon both Natasha and Bucky find themselves in the unfamiliar and uncomfortable territory of being caught entirely off-guard.
Episode ten provides us – and Nat – with many of the answers we’ve been searching for. However, as with everything here, those answers point to yet more questions. Now holding a solid answer to the question of who stole her blood, Natasha is primarily concerned with discovering why. However, the episode ends on another cliff-hanger as Natasha’s second wave finally hits and she finds herself spiraling into unconsciousness surrounded by unfriendly faces and the unpredictable factor of the Winter Soldier.
As before, I’m thoroughly enjoying this story and excited to read on to the next few episodes. Watch out for my recap of episodes six and seven of Jessica Jones: Playing with Fire later this week and come back on July 8th for my recap of Black Widow: Bad Blood episodes eleven and twelve.
GeekMom received a copy of this book for review purposes.