Iron Man #208

8

Great

IronMan208-minArguably providing more of a sharp critique as to the illogical bureaucracy of the American State Department than an actual super-hero story, Denny O’Neil’s script for “Firefang!” still delivers plenty of punch with its enthralling mix of West German/South American political intrigue, Tony Stark’s guilt-laden quest for vindication and Advanced Idea Mechanics’ nuclear potential to cause “the death of a nation!” Indeed, despite this twenty-two page periodical’s storyline being a somewhat self-contained episode, the Missouri-born writer’s narrative engagingly extends well beyond the confines of a single publication, and hints at potential future adventures to come involving both the “organized group of international science-terrorists” and their occupation of the South American nation, Boca Caliente, as well as the establishment of the titular character’s own space station…

Undoubtedly the highlight of Issue Two Hundred And Eight of “Iron Man” though, is the Shazam Award-winner’s inclusion of Shell-head’s Silver Centurion Armour. This “new armour” is really put through its paces with its owner utilising both the suit’s Radar Reflector and Chameleon Mode in order to negate “announcing my visit” to the Caribbean. However, rather than simply have the former ‘golden avenger’ perfectly blend in with his surroundings, as many less inventive authors’ would have done, O’Neil rather impressively actually takes the time to have its wearer explain that the hero’s “outline will [still] be visible, but you’d have to be looking for it to see it!”

Equally as enjoyable is this comic’s rather realistic exploration of Iron Man’s ‘latest’ abilities when facing the threat of three separate explosive devices which are attempting to reduce “a couple of cities… [into] smoking craters” and artist Mark Bright’s extraordinarily clean-lined pencilling of the entire pulse-pounding sequence. Debatably it would have been so easy to simply pen the “genius-level intellect” easily outpacing the missiles and conveniently ‘zapping’ them into harmless metallic pieces using his famous Repulsor Rays. Yet instead, Denny impressively has Stark carefully consider his options due to him not being “familiar with their guidance mechanisms”, and resultantly just “nudge” one of the nuclear weapons “out of its flight path and head it down into the sea”, where “with any luck the impact with the ocean floor won’t set off its warhead.”

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This article is the opinion of the author and does not represent the views of the site owner.
8

Great

Reviewed by
For the past forty or so years I have been collecting American comics… To begin with they were predominantly black and white British reprints of “Marvel Comics Group” titles such as “Spider-Man Comics Weekly”, “The Mighty World of Marvel” and “Star Wars Weekly”; all six to ten pence editions I could store away under my bed in a large cardboard box. As a result though I was introduced to the teenage angst of Peter Parker, the discovery of a frozen Captain America by Earth's Mightiest Heroes, witnessed the dreadful rage of Doctor Bruce Banner, and even travelled to a galaxy far far away... Later I would be able to afford actual America colour comic books and supplemented my collection of “Marvel” titles such as “Conan the Barbarian”, “Howard the Duck” and “Captain America” with some “DC Comics” issues of “Batman”, “Green Lantern” and “Captain Carrot and his Amazing Zoo Crew”. There would even be time for Independent publications such as “Wildcats”, “Spawn” and “The Authority”. These days however I must admit to yearning back to the simpler times of Stan Lee and Jack Kirby, back to when both artwork and storylines were straightforward, easy to follow and super-heroes were just starting out on their adventures. A time when no-one had yet to be resurrected from the dead for the fourth time. I've written over seven hundred comic book reviews on my blog over the past few years, with them usually following my latest purchases, all wrapped up in a large brown paper bag, as well as occasional ‘flashbacks’ to some of the classic "Golden Age" issues I already own…

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