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Iron Man's New Origin (Spoilers!)

IRON MAN #17 hit us with a massive reveal and brings a major change to Tony's life and history.

Kieron Gillen's latest story in IRON MAN, The Secret Origin of Tony Stark, wrapped up with yesterday's issue and it certainly lived up to the story's name. The writer set out to alter the Avenger's origin and IRON MAN #17 absolutely accomplishes that. So, what exactly went down? We have a basic recap for you, but before moving forward, we want to remind you this is obviously loaded with spoilers!

While exploring space and getting into all kinds of trouble, Tony Stark is saved by a Rigellian recorder named 451. Eventually, it's revealed it was no mere coincidence the android bumped into the popular character and has elaborate ties to the hero's parents, Howard and Maria. Despite their best efforts, the couple was unable to produce a child and 451 offered to give them the technology they would need to finally have one. It turns out 451 is fascinated with Earth and believes it holds the potential to bring peace to the universe. However, it knows the rest of the cosmos doesn't exactly have an optimistic opinion of our little planet, and if they wanted to, they could destroy us with little effort.

Humanity simply didn't have the means to stand up to the civilizations out there who could mean us harm and 451 wanted to rectify that. The android aimed to give Earth an individual who could greatly accelerate Earth's technology so it could defend itself from potential attacks. 451 wants this individual to be Howard and Maria's child. After thinking it over, the two agree to have their offspring modified by the alien android and in doing so, we're lead to believe everything Tony Stark has done is thanks to genetic modifications. This apparent change was met with mixed reactions and understandably so. No longer were Stark's great accomplishments due to his own wit, intellect and drive. Instead, he was allegedly programmed to serve this greater purpose.

Later, 451 also reveals that Iron Man's fascination with exoskeletons and armor stems from another purpose in his life: to pilot a 25,000 foot tall armor called the "Godkiller." Even though the hero has improved Earth's weaponry by leaps and bounds, it still needs a nuclear deterrent on a cosmic level and it doesn't get more impressive than this nearly 5-mile tall war machine. Much to 451's surprise, Tony is unable to control the Godkiller and because of this failure, a planet is destroyed by the towering armor. Long story short, 451 thinks Tony needs more motivation, so the android aims the Godkiller at Earth. Naturally, Tony is able to save the planet, but not by eventually taking control the armor. Instead, he makes the behemoth undergo a warp jump to a far away dimension and in turn, defeats 451. Although, 451's remains don't go with the huge armor -- Tony keeps them.

So, if Howard's child was programmed to control the Godkiller, why couldn't Tony? Well, the reason behind that is the massive bombshell in the story: Tony's not the biological child Howard had -- Tony's adopted. When Howard agreed to work with 451, he found something in the alien's work that he couldn't quite understand. Eventually, he reached the conclusion it was a "genetic clock" which would kill his son at a certain age. Howard worked to counter this and injected a biococktail into his wife, hoping to interfere with this "suicide gene." Unfortunately, it had a negative impact on the child and shortly after birth, he was unable to breathe without medical aid. Howard knew this was because of his interference and finally told his wife the truth. Knowing 451 would one day return, the couple knew they had to hide this from the technologically advanced 451. To keep his interference a secret, they adopted a child -- a child who would one day become Iron Man. Yes, this means all that concern over Tony having "genetic modifications" was for nothing and Stark ultimately remains a self-made man when it comes to his life's feats.

After putting together all of the pieces, Tony finally visits his brother in the Maria Stark Foundation Hospice. His brother, Arno Stark, is hooked up to a variety of equipment but can still communicate through typing (which he does at a very fast speed). After a much needed heart to heart, Tony claims that 451 is no longer in the picture and Arno's existence no longer needs to remain a secret. Together, they can now work to fix some of the world's biggest problems.

The next issue begins a story called "Iron Metropolitan," so it's clear the intelligent duo will aim to change every day life in cities. How? Well, we'll just have to read the story to find out. But will Arno develop an armor of his own which will support his vitals and in turn, serve as a nod to Iron Man 2020? We have no idea what Gillen will throw our way from here, but it certainly looks promising and is loaded with potential. This will give the writer a chance to set aside the cosmic grandeur and instead focus on giving this book a whole lot of heart.

Viners, what do you think of Tony Stark's new origin? Are you pleased with the final twist or were you hoping for something different? Share your thoughts with us below!

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Posted by ArturoCalaKayVee

I really like the fact he has a brother now because that can develop into really cool stories and new partnership. Maybe a new Iron Man character similar to War Machine!

The fact Tony was adopted though...that kind of irked me...but then I read this...

@k4tzm4n said:

@lvenger said:

(Sigh) Well done Marvel, you've managed to ruin another of your top characters and change things unnecessarily for absolutely no reason whatsoever. Tony's now no longer a biological Stark and all the changes meant for him have been dumped on a new character. Man what an absolutely stupid move by Gilleon, a writer who I had respect for on his Thor run. I guess being in the limelight thanks to a few movies can have some costly price.

Would you have actually been pleased if those changes were indeed about Tony, though? If anything, I imagine that would generate more outrage because it totally diminishes his accomplishments. I'm perfectly fine with him not being Howard's biological son because it doesn't change his upbringing, who he's become, and especially important, what he's accomplished. It doesn't ruin the character at all for me.

And I have to say I agree with it. Doesn't change any of his feats of accomplishments.

It's just a weird pill to shallow.

Posted by ghost_runner

I like give Tony a brother, that could lead to some interesting stories, but i believe every heroes origin should be simple and easy to explain. This just muddies the water and makes everything convoluted

Posted by Noteworthington

Story was a great read from start to finish.

First run of an Iron Man series I eagerly awaited each week.

Posted by Thor_Ul

Tony Stark had a secret brother who was in an institution under his mother's care? That sounds familiar.

Posted by Armistice

Iron Man is Disney/Marvel's cash cow, but for some reason they seem hell-bent on ruining the character in every way possible and at every opportunity based on the directions taken in the comics over the past decade and even the more recent ones in the Cinematic U.

I am far from a conspiracy theorist but it almost seems as if Marvel's creative decision-makers are devoted to make other characters look good at the expense of Stark in an effort to push less popular charaters. As to why they continue to butcher him in this manner is simply beyond my understanding.

This new "origin" is simply a complete and utter joke and screams of " we have no idea what to do with him"

Posted by Supreme_Maj

They should say Howard Stark lied to his wife for Tony adoption but he was actually Howard son through another woman because he was not sure his wife could conceive this story should be better and would explain why Tony looks so much like him and up to the end Mrs Stark thought Tony was adopted because for me this new origin remove the magic of the character

Posted by Maddpanda531

@andyphifer: Thank you for expressing, perfectly, how I feel about this

Posted by simonchan

@trevel8182: lmao! zing!

p.s. disappointing.. .adopted??? beh.

Posted by BritishMonkey

Welp, glad I stopped getting this series. Really did turn to crap.

Posted by Jake Fury

Hahahahhahaaha@ all of the haters, 95% of whom probably decided to post without even reading it. This arc and work by Gillen made me a Tony Stark fan. All of the obstacles he overcame, the self doubt, the diabolical 451, defusing the Godkiller, no assistance from the Avengers and best of all: TONY STARK IS A SELF-MADE MAN. He did it all by himself with devices that he created on his OWN MERITS.

I LOVED IT.

Once again:

IN GILLEN I TRUST.

Posted by lifeboy

He's not Tony Stark, I AM THE REAL TONY STARK!! * dramatic organ music plays*

Posted by wolverine1610

i like it, i mean its a shocker that he's adopted but now we can't say "oh well tony stark is so smart because he was specifically made that way" no it's he's so smart because he was a natural genius on his own and he gets to sit at the big boy smart table because of his own merits

Posted by Ando123

Wow was a great ending never thought Gillen would do such a thing¡

Posted by Emperormeister734

So if Tony's not a Stark than who is his real parents? This has gotten to a point where we need to know who his real parents are.

Posted by GothamRed

@iceslick: Clearly it was a well planned adoption

Posted by nappystr8

Okay, well, this doesn't seem to be the complete bastardization (looking back...I guess this is a pun...unintended) of the character that I was worried about when I started reading this article. But still, this is a whole lot of unneeded complication to Iron Man's back story. Can't comics just move forward instead of always looking back?

Posted by iceslick

@gothamred: Maybe an adoption of Howard Stark's long lost brother. lol

Edited by Patera_All

@k4tzm4n: Totally agree with your take on this... almost. There's a simple fix here, so get ready for an eye roll, but I think Tony being a twin, with Arno being the one who should have been destined for greatness, would have been an easy fix which would worked well in this context. Yeah, the twin thing, it's such a HUGE cliche, but in this case it really could have helped all of the other threads fit much more poetically.

Posted by simple_man815

Maybe Howard did something with Tony's DNA to fool 451?

Posted by SavageDragon

Sounds pretty cool to me.

Posted by millennium

sigh and this is why rhode getting his own solo book is going to fail it was all ready on loose ground but this this just cuts the legs right out from underneath him

Posted by Miss_Garrick

I'm glad that Tony is still solely his own man. It really ticks me off when a writer (whatever the media form) decides to add something that basically says "you're not cool! It was an outside force that did it all for you." Way too many sci-fi stories have aliens were responsible for all of Earth's accomplishments and we earthlings just copied from them. That is SO LAME!! It is one of my biggest gripes in science fiction. Ticks me off every time.

As for brother Arno, I see some good possibilities. The name is a bit silly, I get the reference to 2020 iron man, but he should have been named something else.

Also Tony being adopted makes a lot a sense.

Posted by JetiiMitra

I really like the fact he has a brother now because that can develop into really cool stories and new partnership. Maybe a new Iron Man character similar to War Machine!

The fact Tony was adopted though...that kind of irked me...but then I read this...

@k4tzm4n said:

@lvenger said:

(Sigh) Well done Marvel, you've managed to ruin another of your top characters and change things unnecessarily for absolutely no reason whatsoever. Tony's now no longer a biological Stark and all the changes meant for him have been dumped on a new character. Man what an absolutely stupid move by Gilleon, a writer who I had respect for on his Thor run. I guess being in the limelight thanks to a few movies can have some costly price.

Would you have actually been pleased if those changes were indeed about Tony, though? If anything, I imagine that would generate more outrage because it totally diminishes his accomplishments. I'm perfectly fine with him not being Howard's biological son because it doesn't change his upbringing, who he's become, and especially important, what he's accomplished. It doesn't ruin the character at all for me.

And I have to say I agree with it. Doesn't change any of his feats of accomplishments.

It's just a weird pill to shallow.

That's why Tony should be a clone. As we've seen in the past, clones are the answer to everything.

Edited by Lvenger

@k4tzm4n said:

@lvenger said:

(Sigh) Well done Marvel, you've managed to ruin another of your top characters and change things unnecessarily for absolutely no reason whatsoever. Tony's now no longer a biological Stark and all the changes meant for him have been dumped on a new character. Man what an absolutely stupid move by Gilleon, a writer who I had respect for on his Thor run. I guess being in the limelight thanks to a few movies can have some costly price.

Would you have actually been pleased if those changes were indeed about Tony, though? If anything, I imagine that would generate more outrage because it totally diminishes his accomplishments. I'm perfectly fine with him not being Howard's biological son because it doesn't change his upbringing, who he's become, and especially important, what he's accomplished. It doesn't ruin the character at all for me.

I suppose ruin is too strong a word. But Gilleon seems to have set up all these new changes for Tony Stark only to have them changed at the last minute and dumped onto an entirely new character. It's pointless more than anything which is what aggravates me the most about this move. And yes I admit I would have been more irked that Tony was a product of biological destiny over self made accomplishments. But setting new plot points up only to create a new character to inherit those changes seems like weak story telling to me.

Posted by TheAcidSkull

Overall I dislike this greatly but I guess it's better than tonys Success being a product of someone else.

Edited by Omega Ray Jay

What was wrong with a human standing on there own two feet and accomplishing all that Tony has by being the man who he is. Why bring all this in? A quote from Doctor Who springs to mind:

"I deny this reality!"

Posted by PunyParker

meh.

Posted by Shadowmyst

I guess we should call him Tony Snow now huh? cause he is bastard born

oh wait...

Edited by LB70145

I like when people get mad at stuff like this. Seriously, if you look at histories of characters all kinds of ludicrous stuff happens to major characters. Does anyone remember when Captain America became a werewolf? How about that clone business with Spider-Man? Wait, Wolverine got a new Adamantium Skeleton by becoming a Horseman of Apocalypse? Yeah, you may be mad now, but it doesn't stick to the character all that much.

Posted by Carolina574

I don't mind this. For me, this is the first time in... Ever, the the iron man solo comic has seemed interesting.

Edited by Hawkeye57

The whole adoption part is dumb. Why couldn't they have just it as it was?? I wish Stan Lee was still writing books..

Posted by TrueMarvel

I'm kinda mad that hes adopted to be honest....... I liked him better as a biological stark for some reason. But I am glad he is being distanced from his DC counterpart batman

Posted by fodigg

I'm shocked at the hate this is getting. It has literally zero negative impact on the character other than adding another relative and a bit more emotional complexity to his relationship with his parents. I think it's great, and furthermore, is earned by the narrative in a way that other "oh hey you have a sibling" stories (*cough*Lincoln March*cough*) didn't do well enough.

Edited by TrueMarvel

Iron Man is Disney/Marvel's cash cow, but for some reason they seem hell-bent on ruining the character in every way possible and at every opportunity based on the directions taken in the comics over the past decade and even the more recent ones in the Cinematic U.

I am far from a conspiracy theorist but it almost seems as if Marvel's creative decision-makers are devoted to make other characters look good at the expense of Stark in an effort to push less popular charaters. As to why they continue to butcher him in this manner is simply beyond my understanding.

This new "origin" is simply a complete and utter joke and screams of " we have no idea what to do with him"

I have to disagree with you on that one. You are right, marvel does promote unpopular characters at the expense of major characters, but Iron man is not one of them. The name you are looking for is Thor, and to a lesser extent wolverine.

The actual event of Thor losing a battle to anyone is quite ridiculous given the powers and combat skills of the character. But time and time again the Hulk and other characters reputations are boosted with the act of taking down Thor. Ironically, Thor was created by Stan Lee to be Hulks successor as The strongest Marvel character. Isn't it strange how the creator of both characters intentionally wanted Thor to be stronger then hulk yet modern writers love having the hulk beat Thor? Hulk's image is augmented at the expense of Thor, time and time again.

Wolverine? That dude gets HUMILIATED at the expense of lesser characters ALL THE TIME. Nothing more needs to be said.

Edited by Dstick88

@teerack said:

The new Iron Man series is really striving to be the most boring and uninteresting marvel book.

This so much. This book made me think watching my food spin in the microwave was more exciting.

Posted by ArturoCalaKayVee

@mitran: I actually think I would have been more outraged if he were a clone.

Posted by kapitein_zeppos

The whole adopted bit sounds a bit weird in that the Starks adopted THAT kid that happens to look like Howard AND is a genius ...

I guess this is what happens when they don't lock a character down to prevent any random idiot from making changes like a vandal writes something obscene on freshly laid concrete.

Edited by ThomasElliot

Am I the only one sick and tired of predisposition behaviors and destiny? Why, why does every character now have to be 'born to be _________'?

Doesn't that RUIN the fabric of the 'everymen (and women) who become something greater'?

Peter Parker... just another teen in a freak accident that gives him powers! Watch the relatable teen juggle being a teen and being a hero... until we tell you how his parents were super-spies and other things that set in motion prior to his birth that would eventually lead him to being bit by a radioactive spider.

Meh. 'Destiny' isn't the name of a beautiful woman, its the fake name of a cheap stripper dancing for dollars.

Edited by illmatic06

I am not sure whats up with the outrage. Not sure why him not being a Stark detracts from his character.

Sometimes, I think that comic fans love to complain about ANY deviation no matter how minor or major.

Edited by redraobyek

I gave up on Iron Man when Fraction stopped writing him, just as I gave up on Cap when Brubaker moved on. Looks like I made the right call in both cases.

Posted by Jake Fury

Hahahaaha, Gillen is the man.

Posted by Squalleon

I like give Tony a brother, that could lead to some interesting stories, but i believe every heroes origin should be simple and easy to explain. This just muddies the water and makes everything convoluted

This.
I have no problem with this other than it makes Tony's origin convoluted and a superhero's past should be easy to follow. It really remind's me why this industry is retconning and rebooting stuff every other week :-P
Arno could possibly evolve in a good supporting character (although i am sure he will end up evil) and Tony really needs a solid supporting cast.

Posted by gothicshieldagent

As Dr.Sheldon Cooper might say "this is total hokum" and snort derisively throwing his hands up at Marvel's shenanigans.

Posted by Solomonwreath

Frankly, I don't care about the changes made to Tony. It can always be undone if this fails miserably. I just hope Arno is only in the iron lung thing for one or two issues, and gets some awesome suit with that allows him to at walk and talk (give some direct neural interface and the base of the brainstem, or something that sounds like an Iron Man thing), and he better get his own A.I. like P.E.P.P.E.R. ( I want each member of the Iron Man family to have a personal A.I. for the sake of comedy and banter without team-ups).

Edited by Nathaniel_Christopher

Tony in the end being adopted reads like a cop out. I'd have preferred if they'd stuck to how things seemed before Arno was revealed. Tony being adopted seems like such an unnecessary change, and seems it would require such a convoluted series of events over 40 odd years of comic history for it to even hold up. I'm honestly wondering how long it'll be before this is retconned.

Posted by k4tzm4n

Tony in the end being adopted reads like a cop out. I'd have preferred if they'd stuck to how things seemed before Arno was revealed. Tony being adopted seems like such an unnecessary change, and seems it would require such a convoluted series of events over 40 odd years of comic history for it to even hold up. I'm honestly wondering how long it'll be before this is retconned.

Tony merely being adopted is convoluted, but everything he's accomplished being attributed to a plot involving ancient aliens, a super smart android and genetic enhancements isn't? To each their own and all that but Tony merely being adopted doesn't change him at all for me.

Staff
Posted by Larnstake1

my friend's sister-in-law makes $60/hr on the internet. She has been fired from work for eight months but last month her pay check was $21391 just working on the internet for a few hours. Continue Reading....www.Rush64.com

Edited by Nathaniel_Christopher

@k4tzm4n said:

@nathaniel_christopher said:

Tony in the end being adopted reads like a cop out. I'd have preferred if they'd stuck to how things seemed before Arno was revealed. Tony being adopted seems like such an unnecessary change, and seems it would require such a convoluted series of events over 40 odd years of comic history for it to even hold up. I'm honestly wondering how long it'll be before this is retconned.

Tony merely being adopted is convoluted, but everything he's accomplished being attributed to a plot involving ancient aliens, a super smart android and genetic enhancements isn't? To each their own and all that but Tony merely being adopted doesn't change him at all for me.

That's not what I said. Both are convoluted as hell, but I was commenting on the one that's now canon, and still saying that of the two though, I'd still prefer the scenario where he wasn't adopted.

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