Friday, February 6, 2009

Invincible Iron Man #10 Review

Creative Team
Matt Fraction
Artist: Salvador Larroca
Colorist: Frank D'Armata

Story - World's Most Wanted Part 3: No Future

After the Iron Man/Spider-Man team up issue I was thinking of dropping Invincible Iron Man but because the other Iron Man title was canceled in favor of a War Machine and Tony largely being taken off most titles he use to appear I thought I would give this new Dark Reign direction a shot. The first two issues of "World's Most Wanted" weren't anything spectacular, or something we haven't seen Tony go through, this new arc has shown some promise. This new issue while not great or horrible I found to be boring.

For the most part this was a pure setup issue. And after three issues that is unacceptable since we get no new information in this issue other than Pepper getting her own Iron Woman armor. It doesn't help much that we continue to get some stiff art by Salvador Larroca. While I like how Larroca draws all of the various Iron Man suits all of his characters facial reactions are highly inconsistent. And I don't blame D'Armata since all of his work over on Captain America and other titles show that he is a highly talented colorist. It just seems that Larroca's painted type art doesn't give D'Armata much room to work with when doing the coloring.

The big problem I have with this new arc is that this is nothing new to Tony's character. We have already seen what happens to Tony when he lose his company at least once in the comics and recently in the Iron Man movie, both times to Obidiah Stane. The way this story arc is structured it seems that Fraction is going to give us a Michael Bay car chase scene, that we have seen been done to death.

Also it seems that Fraction has kind of rushed the Pepper development taking her from someone that hates the fact she is only alive by the same tech that kept Tony alive for a long time to taking off in the Iron Woman armor Tony built for her. Even though I get that she needed to escape from H.A.M.M.E.R and the armor was her only way out it just seems rushed that she quickly accepts becoming the same as Tony now. I hope that Fraction actually explores Pepper hesitation of wearing the armor as she thinks she is becoming more machine than human instead of just accepting her new role.

And after finally getting a chance to read Thunderbolts and Dark Avengers and how both Norman and Ms. Hand are portrayed in those titles Fraction's version is nothing to write home about. They both come off as evil versions of Tony and Pepper, which is not a good thing. I just don't get the fact that someone as smart as Tony would just leave a whole stock of Iron Man armor behind for Norman to get his hands on without doing something. Maybe I am wrong but it just seems like a dumb move on Tony's part.

The one thing I will give Fraction credit for is that he has turned Maria Hill from an unlikable bitch that she was before Secret Invasion into a much more likable character. While she still has her bitchy side it is more acceptable with everything going on and it will be interesting to see how Hill will be able to dodge all of the H.A.M.M.E.R agents after her since unlike Tony or Pepper she only has her SHIELD training to fall back on.

Also I have enjoyed the fact that Fraction has brought back the playboy Tony that we haven't seen a few years ago. While I don't know about the whole Tony and Maria thing I kind of smiled at the fact that after sleeping with Maria Tony just left her in the bed with only a note telling her to escape. It was classic Tony.

Issue Rating
Story: 5.7/10 - Fraction continues to give us another setup issue to set up the status quo of all the characters that wasn't needed after already getting two issues, and Secret Invasion and Dark Avengers, of this.
Art: 5/10 - Outside of the way he draws the Iron Man armors all of Larroca's art continues to be stiff and inconsistent.
Overall: 5.35/10 - With the average writing from Fraction combined with Larroca's art this was a pretty boring issue. Hopefully Fraction and Larroca can step up there game in future issues.