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Invincible Iron Man #160: Review

Jul 1982
Dennis O'Neil, Steve Ditko

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Story Name:

A Cry of Beasts

Review & Comments

3.5 stars

Invincible Iron Man #160 Review by (November 10, 2015)
Comments: Marie Severin drew the nightmare splash page, and Steve Ditko penciled the rest of the issue. Sole appearance of Muffy Cuddle. It’s awfully convenient that Tony’s advanced microscanner just happens to power the weapon Black Mamba holds.

Review: The opening page is a real shocker—a boozy Tony Stark? Looking like he just stepped out of NOT BRAND ECCH? The next surprise follows: Steve Ditko on an Iron Man issue? That’s right. His art gives the story a more comical feel than it deserves; the low point is the effects of the ray gun making the victim dance in a particularly silly fashion. The anti-alcohol angle also comes across as an oddball aspect of such a 60s throwback as this; the broad caricature of Muffy seems a much more likely fit. It’s galling to say this but Ditko wasn’t the right man for this job and that spreads a pall over the issue.


Synopsis / Summary / Plot

Invincible Iron Man #160 Synopsis by T Vernon
A very drunken Tony Stark in his Iron Man armor is in a bar challenging anyone to a fight—but it’s only a nightmare by Tony the night before he is to attend a charity gala at the Long Island Zoo at which alcohol will be served. As Tony nervously looks forward to the event, a trio of cloaked villains gains entrance to the zoo by using the image of the guard’s wife to lure him to his death. Tony arrives at the gala with his date, TV star Muffy Cuddle, who turns out to be too fond of the bottle herself. Tony presents the purpose of the affair: a new totally automated system for feeding the animals and warning of trouble. Meanwhile, the three villains uncloak to reveal the Serpent SquadAnaconda, Black Mamba, and Death Adder—hired to sabotage the new system. To create a distraction while they search for the control room they set a number of dangerous animals free. Tony is informed of the dead guard so he dashes to the control room with an insistent Muffy in tow, and discovers the animals are free. Changing into Iron Man he spends a lot of time corralling the wildlife and saving Muffy from a tiger. While Shellhead searches, the Serpents find the control room and take Muffy prisoner as Black Mamba uses the system’s microscanner to power her ray gun. Iron Man arrives and they think he is at their mercy but Shellhead sends a massive charge of electricity though Anaconda’s tentacles then blasts Muffy’s flask to take down Death Adder. Mamba turns on her special power: taking the form of a loved one of whoever she targets. Tony sees Bethany Cabe before him and starts to let down his guard but Beth suddenly turns into Pepper Potts snapping him out of it. The villainess shoots him with the ray gun; the hero quickly overcomes its effects and belts her. Taking stock of the damage he sees his face is badly bruised and that Muffy is shrieking in the throes of the d.t.s.

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Barberoids 1 cover original artwork on ebay

Steve Ditko
Dan Green
Don Warfield
Jim Starlin (Cover Penciler)
Jim Starlin (Cover Inker)


Listed in Alphabetical Order.

Iron Man
Iron Man

(Tony Stark)

Plus: Anaconda.

> Invincible Iron Man: Book info and issue index

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