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International Iron Man #4: Review

Jun 2016
Brian Michael Bendis, Alex Maleev

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Review & Comments

4 stars

International Iron Man #4 Review by (June 16, 2016)
The current time is 1 week after the opening flashback next to the opening battle in Civil War II #1. But the 2nd part of CWII#1 is 3 weeks after the 1st part. So the current parts of this storyline take place in between, before the bulk of the CWII series.

I don't think Friday was active when Tony discovered he was adopted in IM(2012)#17. Pepper Potts was running his company for him at that time. Friday had been around earlier, but only reappeared at the start of this series. But then this is a new reality, and we don't know the current history between Tony and Pepper. So things may have been rewritten.


Synopsis / Summary / Plot

International Iron Man #4 Synopsis by Rob Johnson
This issue is split between 3 time periods this time, and in the extra 1 we finally get some idea how Tony Stark ended up meeting Cassandra Gillespie again. And that part also has a gratuitous link to Civil War II, justifying the cover banner.

1 week ago Tony and his AI Friday are listening to a news report about the mass battle against the Celestial Destructor in CWII#1. She asks if he wants to give an interview explaining what happened. But instead he wants her to search for his biological parents. Friday says she did it already, as soon as he discovered he was adopted. She just wasn't going to tell him until he asked.

She tells him he came from an orphanage in Bulgaria, so he flies there as Iron Man. The orphans look on with interest as his armour splits up and hides away. The administrator takes him to the old paper files, but he finds his casefile is missing. He assumes his father Howard used his SHIELD connections to take it. But the administrator reminds him that his real parents may also have done it.

Now we move to the continuing flashback to 20 years ago. Last issue Cassandra admitted to Tony that originally she got close to him because her parents (arms-dealing rivals of Howard Stark) wanted her to. All as Howard suspected. But later she really did fall in love with him. However unlike Tony she hasn't really run away from her family.

Now Tony has brought their sailboat back to harbour in New Zealand, and he doesn't want anything more to do with her.

At this point his dad shows up with Dum Dum Dugan and a SHIELD squad in weaponised flying cars. They want to arrest Cassandra as a terrorist. (Cassie's parents are less legal arms-traders than Howard is (supposed to be).) But Hydra turn up too. During the firefight Howard protects himself and his son in a forcefield bubble. But Hydra take the girl.

Now in the present the trail has somehow led Tony to Cassandra, who is now an arms-dealer in her own right (with an eye-patch). They're having a conversation in the bathroom of her secret mansion.

Cassie says her parents are dead (like Tony's). Tony doesn't care whether she really was abducted by Hydra 20 years ago, or whether that was another of her parents' tricks. But she does say she's run a discrete operation, unlike Hydra and AIM, which has kept her under SHIELD's radar all this time.

She's pushed a button which has summoned her Mandroids - they're 3 minutes away. Tony says it's 3 minutes to tell him who his parents are. She sort-of admitted to knowing in #2, but now says she didn't even know he was adopted until this series.

She says she's been watching his career from afar. He claims to think about her all the time.

But she says she can't call the Mandroids off because she needs to maintain her tough reputation.

Alex Maleev
Alex Maleev
Paul Mounts
Alex Maleev (Cover Penciler)
Alex Maleev (Cover Inker)
Alex Maleev (Cover Colorist)


Listed in Alphabetical Order.

Iron Man
Iron Man

(Tony Stark)

> International Iron Man: Book info and issue index

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