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Infamous Iron Man #5: Review

Feb 2017
Brian Michael Bendis, Alex Maleev

Story Name:

(no title given)

Review & Comments

4 stars

Infamous Iron Man #5 Review by (March 5, 2017)
Back in Civil War II #8 I mentioned that an interior illustration was modelled on Michelangelo's Pietà. There are many other Pietà's in statue or painting form, and I thin cover image here is based on another of them - though I can't point to an exact 1.

We learned in Astonishing Tales #8 that Victor von Doom 1st frequently tried to rescue his mother Cynthia from Hell, and that the 1st attempt was the experiment that scarred his face described in Fantastic Four #5 and Annual #2. After other documented attempts he succeeded in Marvel Graphic Novel: Dr Doom & Dr Strange: Triumph and Torment, where she was supposedly transferred to Heaven.

Reed is Reed Richards. But according to the cover preview and solicits for later issues this Reed is the Maker, the evil Reed Richards from the Ultimate Universe.

Where does this storyline fit in the overall Marvel chronology. It's obviously after CWII because Tony Stark's in a coma, and the Guardians Of The Galaxy are trapped on Earth and have split up letting Thing join SHIELD. But Maria Hill is still boss of SHIELD so it's before she got fired in Captain America: Steve Rogers #9-10, leading up to Secret Empire.
Maker was the mastervillain in the recently-concluded New Avengers series, but at the end he was arrested by the Army. Maybe we'll learn that he escaped from them.
Maria Hill was also leading SHIELD there, but she wasn't seen after #12. So another possibility is that Maker is moonlighting here during his NAv stint.


Synopsis / Summary / Plot

Infamous Iron Man #5 Synopsis by Rob Johnson
Thing wakes up in the medibay on the SHIELD helicarrier with all his rocky skin intact. Director Maria Hill wants to know what happened before they found him in Dr Doom's lab in the ruins of his Latverian castle.

Ben Grimm asks if Doom or his mom were there? Hill says he was alone, and didn't Doom's mother die when he was young? Thing thought that too, and she appeared to still not be old, but she was there casting spells. He figures now that she must have made him 'think' his rocks were falling off. But then Doom showed up in his 'Iron Man' armour and saved his life.

We now flashback to the incident in question. The woman insists that she is Cynthia von Doom, but Victor von Doom doesn't believe her. She tells him to scan her with the facilities of his armour and his sorcery, but he knows she died as a Gypsy witch in his early youth. She claims to have been alive all this time. All the while they are trading magic attacks. And she keeps asking him to unmask.

Eventually they calm down and talk. Cynthia claims that she kept hidden because she was ashamed of Victor's villainous career as Dr Doom. But now that he is trying to be a hero she wants to help him. (This doesn't explain why she pretended to be dead when he was a child.) Her 'help' includes dealing with his enemies - so she wants to kill Thing. But he says that if she truly wants to help him be good then she must let Thing go. With a spell she either restores his rocky hide or removes the illusion that it was damaged.

Then Victor asks his mother why she didn't try to stop his villainy if she was so ashamed of him. But Grimm loses consciousness before he hears her reply.

Now we're back to the helicarrier as Ben finishes his story. They are hovering over Doom's castle. The attack on SHIELD Agent Grimm has given SHIELD an excuse to move in and try to restore order in Latveria. We see troops arresting the military led by General Karadick (from last issue).

Now cut to Cambridge University, England where Dum Dum Dugan is leading a small group of SHIELD Agents to interview Amara Perera. He wants to know where Victor von Doom took her after he fought Agent Grimm in her apartment (#3). She's angry that Doom's unreciprocated interest in her means SHIELD won't leave her alone. And her anger rises she is handed a note telling her to leave the University because of all this. Dugan & co leave when she insists she doesn't know where Doom took her. (She was unconscious on the journey there, and was returned by magic.)

As Amara starts to clear her desk Victor appears. It seems he was there all the time invisible, unknown to her. He promises to help sort her life out, but she retorts that it is his 'help' that has made the mess in the 1st place. But then as her anger subsides she realises he has just said something about meeting his mother for the 1st time since he was young, and belatedly asks what happened.

So now we get the rest of the flashback. Cynthia's answer to Victor's question is that she didn't try to stop him when he turned bad because she loves him. Vic's response is to resume their fight. Until his mother magically departs.

Now Victor explains to Amara that not only did his mother die but he has seen her in Hell many times until he eventually won her salvation. He also says that he has realised that doing good is more difficult than doing evil. Amara says they can't really help each other and maybe they should go their own ways.

And on the final page Cynthia von Doom is looking into her witch's cauldron and talking to someone as she was in #3. She calls her companion Reed.

Alex Maleev
Alex Maleev
Matt Hollingsworth
Alex Maleev (Cover Penciler)
Alex Maleev (Cover Inker)
Alex Maleev (Cover Colorist)


Listed in Alphabetical Order.

Iron Man
Iron Man

(Tony Stark)

(Ben Grimm)

> Infamous Iron Man: Book info and issue index

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