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Invincible Iron Man #8: Review

Sep 1998
Kurt Busiek, Sean Chen

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Story Name:

The hunt

Review & Comments

4 stars

Invincible Iron Man #8 Review by (October 29, 2019)
Comments: Story is a prelude to “Revenge of the Mandarin” in the next two issues. Whiplash (Mark Scarlotti) was introduced in TALES OF SUSPENSE #97-99 and later became Blacklash; this is his first appearance returning to the Whiplash name; the murder of his wife took place in ELEKTRA (1996 series) #5-7. Yvette Avril was introduced in IRON MAN #119 in 1979 and has appeared intermittently since then; this is her final appearance as of 2019. Spymaster’s gang is called the Espionage Elite in issue #11; they were first seen in IRON MAN Vol. 1 #33-34 and immediately forgotten; their next appearance is in IRON MAN: BAD BLOOD. Eric Cannon and Sean Parsons are credited with inking.

Review: More violence, this time from a new S&M version of Whiplash with leather and bare chest plus a colorless band of toughs who beat up Tony. But we know Tony has friends, including Yvette to go with Happy and Pepper. Nice lead-in to the Mandarin story next issue but no big deal in itself; the art is a bit inferior, especially the odd look to Pepper Potts with freckles.


Synopsis / Summary / Plot

Invincible Iron Man #8 Synopsis by T Vernon
On a dark night in Western France, a flying car piloted by Tony Stark with his European chief Yvette Avril is being pursued by Iron Man’s old enemy Whiplash on a small flying platform. The villain wrecks one of the car’s hover-units and Tony is forced to drive into a railroad tunnel. There, he sends Yvette for help while he dons the Iron Man armor to face Whiplash….

Tony recalls the adventures of the previous few issues, working with Happy Hogan and Pepper Potts, quarrelling since their divorce, to uncover the identity of the Arms Dealer’s mysterious employer. Dodging an attempt on his life by gunmen, Tony decided to investigate personally by travelling around Europe with business matters for a cover, using Yvette as his entree….

Now Iron Man is fighting a faster, meaner version of his old enemy, armed with a more dangerous whip. Shellhead asks why this professional killer is now so vicious and sadistic; Whiplash explains that he had a family and his wife was murdered and his son taken away from him and he’s now bitterly cynical about everything but money. Iron Man tires to reason with him and damages his flying platform; the villain is forced to retreat, clobbering the hero with his kinetic whip and knocking him to the floor of an outdoor café, leaving him with a warning for his true target, Tony Stark….

The next day, he learns that Yvette, despite the danger, will stick by him, whatever happens, and she buys him a flower as a gift. Then as he’s working, he finally manages to crack the Arms Dealer’s code. In New York, Happy and Pepper are bickering about Pep’s mean little dog; Happy stumbles and spies a listening device planted under a table. They also realize that only Doreen could have placed it there (see issue #3) and then they know that whoever was listening now knows Tony’s secret identity as Iron Man. In France, Tony sees the Chinese characters on his screen and knows his enemy is the Mandarin. As he leaves the building, he gets a warning call from Pepper, and as soon as he is out the door he is attacked by a band of blue-clad commandos; following orders, they take his briefcase (containing his armor) and throw it into the river. They then proceed to beat Tony to a pulp and looking up he sees their leader is Spymaster. Suddenly, Black Widow arrives and takes on the baddies, chasing them off—and then she realizes Tony’s heart isn’t beating….

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Barberoids 1 cover original artwork on ebay

Sean Chen
Eric Cannon
Steve Oliff
Sean Chen (Cover Penciler)
Eric Cannon (Cover Inker)
Liquid! (Cover Colorist)
Letterer: Richard Starkings.
Editor: Bobbie Chase. Editor-in-chief: Bob Harras.


Listed in Alphabetical Order.

Black Widow
Black Widow

(Natasha Romanoff)
Iron Man
Iron Man

(Tony Stark)
Pepper Potts
Pepper Potts

(Pepper Hogan)

Plus: Spymaster (Nathan Lemon), Yvette Avril.

> Invincible Iron Man: Book info and issue index

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