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Invincible Iron Man #173: Review

Aug 1983
Dennis O'Neil, Luke McDonnell

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Story Name:

Judas is a Woman

Review & Comments

4.5 stars

Invincible Iron Man #173 Review by (February 9, 2016)
Comments: The cover title is now THE ALL NEW IRON MAN until #179. Final appearance of Indres Moomji (as of 12/2015). The Sisterhood of Ishtar appears only here and in issue #176.

Review: Another sad issue with help for Tony still not on the horizon but still we have to explore all avenues thus the story doesn’t seem too contrived when it sends the hero after an espionage cult for a possible cure for Tony (well, maybe just a little contrived—an espionage cult?). The surprising background on Indres Moomji is very well done and the Sisterhood doesn’t play enough of a role in the story to be ruined with a lot of clichés (like the Maggia and other criminal organizations in this very series?). The art is spectacular with the sequence of Shellhead’s escape from the Vortex a standout. And a hero running a gauntlet of traps is always fun and we get another one here. And it’s nice to see a superhero with a living mother for a change.


Synopsis / Summary / Plot

Invincible Iron Man #173 Synopsis by T Vernon
A drunken and derelict Tony Stark is standing in an alley when he is accosted by a gang of punks; they beat him up but a pair of armed men chase them off and conduct Tony into a waiting limousine. They give him a drink and drop him off at Stark International, just in time to see the sign changed to Stane International. Obadiah Stane welcomes Tony just to watch his shame. Artie Pithins hands Stane a stack of resignations from the firm and new boss orders his ex employees off his grounds. Mrs. Arbogast pauses briefly to gently scold Tony and she is gone too. Stane orders Tony away as well and Iron Man arrives; Stane offers a suggestion to help Tony, getting Rhodey’s attention. Since Indres Moomji aided Tony’s return to alcoholism, perhaps she can persuade him to stop? Stane reveals that she is a prisoner of the Sisterhood of Ishtar and offers to help Shellhead locate the sect. Rhodey agrees….
Iron Man flies Tony off to his (Rhodey’s) mother’s home in Philadelphia, asking Mom to look after him for a couple of days….
Iron Man soon arrives in the Southwestern desert where the Sisterhood of Ishtar has their secret headquarters. His infra-red scanner detects a hidden door in the ground and he enters. As the group’s leader and Indres watch on a scanner, the hero braves a gauntlet of traps, including fire, explosives, and missiles to reach the control room and Indres. He approaches her but falls though a hologram-disguised trap door into the Vortex. He is sucked down toward a pool of magma but manages to slow his descent with his repulsors and, cutting holes in the wall with a finger-drill, creates hand and footholds and climbs back up. He seizes Indres in his arms and blasts his way past the rest of the Sisters to reach the outside. He has since figured out that she was not their prisoner; Indres explains that the Sisterhood is the group that raised her, altered her looks and biochemistry, and trained her to be the perfect seductress. She tries her charm on him but he blows her off and on their way to New York, he asks if she can help Tony. Indres confesses that there was no magic involved; nothing can help Tony if he doesn’t want to be helped. In New York, he lets her leave and confronts Stane with the news that his ploy failed. He then calls his mother to learn that Tony has escaped….

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Barberoids 1 cover original artwork on ebay

Luke McDonnell
Steve Mitchell
Bob Sharen
Luke McDonnell (Cover Penciler)
Steve Mitchell (Cover Inker)


Listed in Alphabetical Order.

Iron Man
Iron Man

(Tony Stark)

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