- Hardcover: 144 pages
- Publisher: MARVEL - US (4 July 2012)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0785160469
- ISBN-13: 978-0785160465
- Product Dimensions: 18.4 x 1.3 x 26.7 cm
- Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 657,161 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
Invincible Iron Man - Vol. 9: Demon (Iron Man (Marvel Comics)) Hardcover – 4 Jul 2012
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Top Customer Reviews
This is another well-written and drawn episode in the life of the Vincible Tony Stark, and while reasonably self-contained, it both answers questions from previous volumes and sets up the next volume's story.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
In this volume, Tony is particularly human and is still reeling from his recent fall off the wagon in the previous volume of this series and in "Fear Itself." This collection nicely weaves Tony's battle for sobriety and regret with the overall challenges posed by his rivals and villains. Speaking of villains - SPOILER ALERT - this features the long-awaited return of classic Iron Man enemies like Blizzard, the Living Laser, Melter, Dreadnoughts, and a host of teaser villains who will, no doubt, play a bigger part next arc. Though suped up "Secret War" style and lacking their old costumes, these revamped baddies make up for the more-realistic yet less memorable costumes with a bigger punch. Just when things couldn't get any worse for Stark, they seem to, and that drama plays so well in this book.
Fraction also has a tremendous grasp of the supporting characters. The dwarf Splitlip has come back with Tony from Asgard and is a riot. Bethany McCabe and Pepper Potts have some standout moments; check out their discussion on the shooting range. And the archenemies, Mandarin, Ezekiel Stane, and the Hammers continue to delight. Serving Tony subpoena papers, embarrassing him with public pictures of him in a drunken state, and making him wear the equivalent of a house arrest bracelet, these are believable, fresh and interesting attacks amid the expected repulsor fights. Moreover, their underhanded, petty, and dishonorable methods will make their inevitable downfall that much sweeter.
The art in this volume continues to be a knockout. Salvador Larroca is amazing and to have him on every issue in this trade paperback, let alone on almost the entire run for this series, is a tremendous gift to us fans. The characters have such distinctive, 3 dimensional looks - no doubt b/c real people like celebrities or others were used as models and touchstones - that they feel unique and recognizable.
Fraction and Larroca have succeeded in creating a virtual and fully-realized Iron Man universe; we're just lucky to be able to take a stroll through it and witness the humanity, loss, and triumph of Tony Stark. I recommend not only this tome but all the volumes of this run. They're adding up to something utterly special and memorable in the history of Iron Man.
Writer: Matt Fraction
Artists: Salvador Larroca (pencils, inks, covers), Frank D'Armata (colors, covers)
Collects: Invincible Iron Man #510-515
Fraction keeps the action coming fast and furious in this trade, which details more of the Mandarin's plan to discredit, break, and ultimately kill Tony Stark. The Mandarin has assembled most of Iron Man's old foes, including The Melter, Living Laser, Firebrand, Blizzard, Titanium Man, Crimson Dynamo, Whirlwind, Dreadnaught robots, and others who all want a piece of him. The problem is that all of them are forced to do the bidding of the Mandarin under his own terms. At the head of them all is Ezekiel Stane, who is forced by the Mandarin to give all of these villains major upgrades, while at the same time building a sort of doomsday weapon for The Mandarin. Clearly, The Mandarin is an insane narcissist, but he's got the power and the determination to take down Tony Stark, and it's not yet clear how all of these parts of his master plan are going to fit together.
While the story continues to be a fun read, the art by Larrocca and D'Armata also continues to impress. I would say the art has slipped just a bit since the re-launch of the series when Larroca first took over art chores, but it is still very high-quality. I would consider D'Armata to be one of the best colorists in the industry, but I would also have to say that this isn't his best work. In the past, he has really blown me away with his coloring talents, especially on books such as Annihilation, Book 1 (Marvel Comics) (Bk. 1). Here, though, he's just OK. It's surprising to see the art take a bit of a nose dive, and I'm not sure why that is. Perhaps it's fatigue on the part of the artists to keep up with the schedule, or perhaps it's boredom after having been on this title for so long. I just hope they don't drop the ball at the finish line when this series comes to its conclusion.
Overall, still a good book and worth a read, but not as good as it was, say - a year ago.
Cool Factor: 7/10
And that changes with Volume 9: Demon. The Mandarin is back and has recruited old Iron Man villains with upgraded technology and armor and is deploying them around the world to launch attacks. He also has Ezekiel Stane, who he freed from prison earlier in the series, building some type of giant robotic thing. Hammer Industries and Spy Master are scheming to sabotage Stark Resilient, including getting the military requiring Tony to install a device on his armory that will allow the military shut his armor down at any time. And Tony is basically racing around the globe trying to keep up with all these armored super villains and conspiracies against him.
You see more panels with Iron Man in this one volume than the previous couple volumes combined, so that's a plus. The action was a little hard to follow at times, but I liked the idea of Iron Man's old villains returning with upgraded suits. But it's Matt Fraction, so of course Iron Man gets his ass kicked by everyone, but it's actually more believable this time, as Iron Man is caught by surprise by all these villains suddenly popping up with powerful new weapons and technology.
In this volume Mandarin launches an intricate plan to destroy Tony Stark with the help of Tony's nemesis, Ezekiel Stane, son of Obadiah Stane. The Mandarin's assault hits tony on all fronts, business, political, physical, and emotional. The plan is flawless and works to perfection, the only question is if Tony can think, fight, and politic his way out of the Mandarin's noose once it's already around his neck.