Tuesday, January 30, 2007

Comics review: Iron Man "Armor Wars" by David Micheline


David Micheline and Bob Layton have had not one but two of the most famous runs in the history of Iron Man. Their run introduced several variants of the Iron man armor (such as the space armor and stealth armor) as well as two of Iron Man's toughest villains: Justin Hammer and alcoholism.

The "Armor Wars" tradeback collects a story arc originally called "Stark Wars" in which Stark realizes that several of the seemingly endless power-armor heroes and villains of the Marvel universe are using technology originiating from Iron Man. Technology stolen from Stark International by the villainous Spymaster.

Determined not to let his armor technology be used to kill, by a hero or a villain, Stark sets out on a campaign to take down anyone using powered armor built by his technology, one at a time.

This includes heroes, such as the Mandroids employed by SHIELD to fight supervillains and numerous villains from the criminal Raiders to two Soviet villains: Crimson Dynamo and Titanium Man.

To the authorities it looks as though Iron Man has gone rogue and to prevent lawsuits against Stark Internation, Tony "fires" his alter ego of Iron Man. As the rogue operations continue, Iron Man becomes hunted by SHIELD and is eventually expelled from the Avengers.

While not as famous as the "Demon in a Bottle" arc where Stark tackles his alcohol addiction, Armor Wars is a great look at an action-filled arc from Micheline and Layton's great run on the book. If you like powered armor heroes and villains, and let's face it, who doesn't, then this is a book you should check out.

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