I used to love Iron Man. He wasn’t my favorite character over at Marvel, but he was darn near close to it. In 2006, something happened that made me hate the character… Civil War. It had nothing to do with who was writing or drawing the book he was in, but it had everything to do with what they did to the character. Iron Man had become Marvel’s #1 villain by forcing super-heroes to reveal their identities, register with their government, and putting a rift between allies and friends. The worst part, for me, was that my favorite Marvel character, Captain , was opposed to Iron Man and his registration act, forcing me to choose sides. (It’s an excellent read, if you haven’t read it)
It’s been 4 years since I picked up an Iron Man book. I’ve hated the character in the MU, and I’ve wanted nothing to do with him, until this past year. In 2008, Matt Fraction and Salvador Larroca launched “Invincible Iron ” An Omnibus recently came out with the first 19 issues in it, which was pretty much the first story. This doesn’t just read as a great Iron Man story. This reads as a great suspense story. I’d say it reads as a great “mystery” story, but the reader knows who the antagonist is from the moment the book starts. It’s not so much about “whodunit” but more about “how they went about it.” Although Iron Man is still technically I “fell in hate” with, he is entirely more compelling as a character as the reader sees a side of Tony that is more compassionate. After this omnibus, however, is a story arc (called Stark: Disassembled) that completely changes the “name of the game.” I know that is cryptic, but I don’t want to reveal anything.
What do you need to know about this run of Iron Man? Well, prepare for a few very small spoilers. Aside from Civil War, you need to know there is a distrust of Tony Stark right now because many believe he could have prevented the Secret Invasion because he had prior knowledge to it. The armor he currently uses is plugged into his brain. It’s no longer some giant piece of metal climbs into and has to control. The suit can work as quickly as his brain can. Norman Osborn, just Norman not Green Goblin, wants power and wants it all.
Although Iron Man became one of those characters I just couldn’t stand anymore, this current volume redeems the hero inside of Tony Stark and this omnibus is worth your money. It goes for $40 for the hardcover, but that’s 19 issues. It’s well worth it, and if you’re thrifty, like I tend to be, you can find this book on the internet for $26 at the cheapest, and that’s a deal you shouldn’t pass up. Iron Man is a character that deserves a second chance.
~Mat Elfring is a comedian, teacher, comic book writer, comic store employee, and an Iron Man fan once again.~