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'International Iron Man' review: A gripping, surprisingly human story

Comic Books

‘International Iron Man’ review: A gripping, surprisingly human story

We need more books like this in Marvel right now.

International Iron Man is a book that sets itself apart from any other Iron Man story by giving you a fresh new perspective on Tony Stark. After discovering that Tony is adopted and Maria and Howard Stark are not his real parents, Tony is heavily determined to find out the truth about his past. Get ready for a Marvel style James Bond series that’ll have you on the edge of your seat. It’s the perfect book that builds character development for someone you didn’t know needed any character development, especially at this point in his story.

The great thing about purchasing a paperback is that you’re guaranteed a beginning and end to a story which on average spans about five issues. For International Iron Man, though, it’s a whopping seven issue series jam-packed with action, excellent character designs, a wonderful and suspenseful story, and exciting and emotional moments that will take you by surprise. This is the perfect book to grab for any and every Tony Stark fan. Seeing Tony Stark go through every obstacle to find his birth parents is some of the most gripping and exciting storytelling Marvel has released in recent years. The moments of discovery of who is parents are, why they gave him up and how Howard and Maria came to be with Tony is shocking and heart aching at times. There’s so much to discover and and look forward to in this book and for what’s to come in future Iron Man stories. The last pages are some of the most comforting and emotional parts to read in this story.

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'International Iron Man' review: A gripping, surprisingly human story

The art in this book by Alex Maleev is a very unique style and can sometimes look very bright and beautiful. However, at times it can also look very dark and muddy and isn’t always the most appealing thing to look at. Characters look amazing and have very beautiful designs and facial expressions, but when scenes take place in dark rooms or areas it’s almost just a black page. I’m sure this is alright with most people and I don’t mean to rip a part anyone for their art in a negative manner at all, but this particular style feels 50/50 love-hate with me. The writing by Brian Michael Bendis, on the other hand, is beyond superb and compelling. It’s one of the more real stories in comics, which makes it that much more interesting. Iron Man is so established at this point that it’s surprising that Bendis could deliver such a new and strong story that lives up to its expectations.

If you’re looking for an Iron Man story with repulsor blasts and uni-beam action then this is definitely not the story for you. This book is very heavy on the dialogue, and when there is action and excitement it’s from the hands of Tony Stark. Sure Iron Man does have his moments but this is a Tony Stark story through and through. Normally that would turn most away but that’s the great thing about stories like these where the person under the mask can carry a story without having page after page with constant action and destruction or boss battles. I think Marvel can learn something from a story like this. We need more books like International Iron Man in Marvel right now.

'International Iron Man' review: A gripping, surprisingly human story
International Iron Man
Is it good?
International Iron Man isn't perfect, but it is a must-read and a solid Iron Man story for the history books.
The dialogue was a very strong component to this book and had some impressive moments without having to throw a punch.
The story is very original and keeps you locked in for the whole thing. Seven issues felt like the perfect amount for a story as strong as this one.
The art was very great but also very bad at times. Dark areas never felt just dark, it felt just like a black splat of pages.

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