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Invincible Iron Man #4: Review

Feb 1997
Jim Lee, Whilce Portacio

Story Name:

Bring Me the Head of the Hulk!

Review & Comments

Rating:
3 stars

Invincible Iron Man #4 Review by (July 23, 2019)
Review: Tony Stark, who has miraculously become a nicer guy since becoming Iron Man, is now embarking on a career of being a good guy to atone for all of his bad guy acts; well, that was a quick character arc. And he isn't part of the Avengers at that! Meanwhile, the villain actually has a valid reason for vengeance against Tony and some readers are likely rooting for him, and the battle sequence is quite striking. Pepper works very well as Tony's confidant and it makes a lot more sense than him keeping her in the dark for years as in 616. And Thunderbolt Ross is a ridiculous old coot, resembling cowboy actor Slim Pickens (see DR STRANGELOVE  or BLAZING SADDLES when you get the chance ).

Comments: First appearance of General Thunderbolt Ross. Living Laser is a doofus if he can't deduce that Tony Stark is Iron Man.




 

Synopsis / Summary / Plot

Invincible Iron Man #4 Synopsis by Kevin Hollander
Liz Ross visits her father, Chief of Staff "Thunderbolt" Ross, in the hospital following his heart attack. Despite the fact he's hooked up to an oxygen tank, he continues smoking cigars. Liz listens to her father rant about the need to capture the Hulk and excuses herself, returning to work.

Near his penthouse, Stark uses the Prometheum armor to carve out an armory for any future devices he may need as Iron Man. Pepper contacts him through the armor's comm-channel and tells him that Jasper Sitwell has arrived. Stark returns and removes all armor components excluding the chest piece; he covers that with a large robe and meets with Sitwell at his indoor pool.

Sitwell tells Stark that his request for information about Banner's gamma project has been denied. That project is highly classified and he does not have required clearance. Sitwell explains that many aspects of Stark International are off-limits to him as the government has made a large investment in his company to keep it afloat while he was "lost" after the death of Rebel O'Reilly.

His next appointment is with Arthur Parks. Stark's interest is to make amends to Parks for his behavior during their business venture. Parks will hear none of this and tells him off. He then demonstrates the results of his final project. He can now channel light through his nervous system through implanted fiber optic cables. Calling himself the Living Laser, he attacks Stark, forcing him to dive into his swimming pool for protection.

Stark throws a switch on his chest plate that magnetically pulls the remainder of the armor to him. The armor is invisible to the human eye and is pulled underwater. While the Living Laser attempts to boil Stark in the pool, he puts on the armor and resurfaces. Parks apparently does not correlate Stark's disappearance with Iron Man's sudden appearance. Parks continues to fire his powerful lasers at Iron Man who shrugs it off with a light refraction beam. Parks refuses to give up and pushes harder, peeling away his skin until all that remains is a being of pure energy. At this point, Parks gives up.

Elsewhere: Leonard Samson receives an unexpected phone call at his office from a very distraught Bruce Banner.

Elsewhere #2: Pepper Potts returns to her apartment and finds the assassin Whirlwind waiting for her.

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> Invincible Iron Man: Book info and issue index

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Whilce Portacio
Scott Williams
Wildstorm FX
Whilce Portacio (Cover Penciler)
Scott Williams (Cover Inker)
Letterer: Comicraft.
Editor: Mike Heisler.

Characters

Listed in Alphabetical Order.

Betty Ross
Betty Ross

(Elizabeth Ross)
Doc Samson
Doc Samson

(Leonard Samson)
Hulk
Hulk

(Bruce Banner)
Iron Man
Iron Man

(Tony Stark)
Pepper Potts
Pepper Potts

(Pepper Hogan)
Thunderbolt Ross
Thunderbolt Ross

(Thaddeus Ross)

Plus: Jasper Sitwell, Whirlwind.