Current Reviews


Invincible Iron Man #22

Posted: Tuesday, January 12, 2010
By: Paul Brian McCoy

Matt Fraction
Salvador Larroca, Frank D'Amata (colors)
Marvel Comics
Editor's Note: Invincible Iron Man #22 arrives in stores tomorrow, January 13.

"Stark: Disassembled Part 3: Is It Safe?"

I haven't reviewed an issue Invincible Iron Man in a while, but I've been reading. You know those reviews that are saying Fraction and Larroca are doing fantastic work and this is probably the best run on an Iron Man comic ever and if you abandoned Iron Man during Civil War then you need to check this out and see how Fraction has managed to, without apologies, make the character heroic again?

They're right.

I agree entirely. I understand that some people love the old "Armor Wars" storyline, or think that "Demon in a Bottle" is the defining moment in Iron Man history, but I have to disagree. "Armor Wars" was fun, but suffered from the gauntlet scenario, and "Demon in a Bottle" is a classic, but is hampered by the stylistic limitations of the time when it was written. But this run is different.

This run is about pushing the boundaries of who Tony Stark is and what makes a good Iron Man story. It is reverential to what has come before, but is written in a believable voice and is constantly looking to the future.

I'm not going to bother discussing the details of the story. Just know that you should be reading this, if you aren't already. I will say, though, that this is how a modern crossover should be written. The characters aren't just showing up to boost sales or to have a short fight before teaming up to fight someone else. The characters interact like people, like friends, not brain-dead cartoons, and everyone is here for an emotional or narrative reason that has been well established or is immediately justified.

This is just great storytelling.

Larroca and D'Amata play a huge part in making this book such a success. Every page is just beautiful with smoothly orchestrated layouts that move the story along effortlessly, and design work that is both creepy and believable at the same time. D'Amata's texturing and shading is subtle and provides another layer of believability that grounds the emotional impact of Fraction's scripting.

I don't know what else to tell you people. If you're already reading Invincible Iron Man, you already know how good it is. If you aren't reading it yet, you need to give it a shot. Pick up a trade or two. What you'll be picking up is one of the best ongoing narratives that Marvel is producing today. I'd say this is storytelling on a similar level as Brubaker's Captain America and just looks like it's going to get better and better as the story goes on.

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