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Invincible Iron Man #17: Review

Apr 2007
Charles Knauf, Roberto de la Torre

Story Name:

(no title given)

Review & Comments

Rating:
3 stars

Invincible Iron Man #17 Review by (May 27, 2015)
The indicia changes here from Iron Man to The Invincible Iron Man, but the cover continues to blazon Iron Man: Director of SHIELD. The cover shows Mandarin's hands menacing Iron Man. Apart from the fact that it doesn't happen inside, Mandarin's rings are shown in their original jewelled form on his fingers whereas inside he has new plain rings inserted in his spine. This is the last of the Mongolian flashbacks. In each succeeding issue the continuing flashback was described as occurring 1 more month ago - we've now reached 5 months. But this really just reflects the fact that the issues are published 1 month apart. This doesn't mean that they're 1 month apart in Marvel time. Mandarin will only have plain rings in his spine until #28. Iron Man sees some writing on a wall in the Mongolian prison/hospital, in strange but somehow familiar characters. This will be followed up in #21.



 

Synopsis / Summary / Plot

Invincible Iron Man #17 Synopsis by Rob Johnson
We start this issue with the ongoing flashback to what happened in the An Hu Po state asylum in Mongolia when the bad guys found Mandarin. Last issue he was given new plain rings to replace those in the possession of his son Temugin. He has no hands to wear them, so this issue we see Darius Faraz heating the 1st of the rings and plunging into Mandarin's spine (!). He expresses sorrow for the way he treated his son. We are left to assume the other rings are also attached to his spine.

The rest of the issue is set in current time.

Tony Stark is reviewing with Dum Dum Dugan what they know about the spree of seemingly-unconnected terrorist activities from previous issues. They have discovered that Faraz is supplying the terrorist groups with money and hi-tech weapons. He works for Karim Mahwash Najeeb, but both were previously last known going to the An Hu Po place some months ago. (They don't know that Faraz killed Najeeb and transferred his allegiance to Mandarin.) Stark says he can't get authorisation for a SHIELD mission into Mongolia.

Dugan is more concerned about Tony's relationship with convicted terrorist Maya Hansen. Cut to a TV chat show about them, involving Miriam Sharpe who came to prominence after the Stamford disaster that kick-started the Civil War and formed the Victims of Superhuman Violence Foundation. And Maya herself gets a phone call from Secretary of Defense Jack Kooning asking for a meeting about her invention Extremis.

Kooning asks her about her latest (supposedly-secret but leaked) Extremis report suggesting she can reduce the fatality rate from the high 90%'s to the 60%'s. He offers to give her a lab and a new identity where she can develop her ideas for the government. But Maya turns him down, because Stark got her out of prison.

Tony's pacifist pal and X-O Sal Kennedy unexpectedly supports the idea of taking extreme steps to stop the terrorists who keep showing up with cyborg enhancements. He tells Tony it's either follow the trail to Mongolia or use Maya's ideas to produce something to trump the terrorists' bio-weapons. He accuses Stark of keeping Hansen close to suppress her Extremis research. Tony counters that they're now living together.

Director of SHIELD Stark decides to authorise a Mongolian expedition off his own bat. He contacts Dugan, guessing correctly that Dum Dum has a plan already worked out. He arranges 'routine manoeuvres' for the helicarrier in the Sea of Japan. The 1st stage of the operation is depicted with Dum Dum describing the plan as a voiceover - until reality diverges from that plan.

SHIELD is still expecting to find Najeeb in Mongolia. Iron Man and the armoured Alpha Team are taken there by stealth helicopters. They descend in camouflage mode and take out the guards with repulsor rifles set to stun. Their nano-cams won't work in the cold so they rely on the armour's phera-sense.

This is where it starts to go wrong. The place seems deserted inside. They find Najeeb's body in the morgue. And a smelting forge in the operating theatre. Then they're attacked by inmates with cyborg enhancements, in berzerker mode because their minds have been slaved to a common purpose. The stun guns are ineffective so the troops switch to kill mode.

Meanwhile Najeeb's body is airlifted to the helicarrier. Maya does an autopsy while Sal records the findings. She finds something has been surgically implanted in his chest. Suddenly a mass of red tentacles erupts.


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Roberto de la Torre
Jonathan Sibal
Dean White
Gerald Parel (Cover Penciler)
Gerald Parel (Cover Inker)
Gerald Parel (Cover Colorist)


Characters

Listed in Alphabetical Order.

Iron Man
Iron Man

(Tony Stark)