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Iron Age #1: Review

Jun 2011
Christos N. Gage, Lee Weeks

Story Name:

A Little Help from My Friends

Review & Comments

4 stars

Iron Age #1 Review by (August 6, 2021)
Comments: Preceded by IRON AGE: ALPHA #1. Main series takes place between IRON MAN (2011 series) and IRON MAN (2012 series). From the Avengers’ standpoint, it takes place between AVENGERS #234 and 235. For Captain Britain, this comes after THE DAREDEVILS #11. This alternate reality was called Earth-81191.

Review: So, we now have the main series, an episodic epic which, like a standard video game, is built around Tony Stark trying to locate the missing components of Dr. Doom’s time machine. And there are a separate Alpha and Omega to set up and conclude the tale, demonstrating that it is possible to get three issue #1’s out of a five-issue miniseries. The three-issue main series is a variety of shorter tales, each with its own creative team, varying in quality. Here, there’s a fairly cool Avengers tale involving Tony in unfamiliar armor fighting his teammates, followed by them all fighting Ultron. And the story has a lot to say about Hank Pym and Tony’s desire to help him through his troubles. The second story is quite a bit darker with an anti-mutant agenda in a totalitarian Britain. Readers not familiar with the Captain Britain series may have some trouble following this “What if?” version—I know I did—but it turns out it really isn’t necessary. So, not bad.


Synopsis / Summary / Plot

Iron Age #1 Synopsis by T Vernon
Present Tony Stark has been sent back to the past and needs Past Tony Stark to help him reassemble Dr. Doom’s time platform to save the future from destruction (see IRON AGE: ALPHA) but drunken Past Tony refuses to believe that his visitor from the future isn’t the result of drunken delirium and just laughs it off. So Tony takes the obsolete (from his point of view) Iron Man armor and seeks the help of the Avengers. Startling the assembled Avengers (Captain Marvel (M. Rambeau), She-Hulk, Hawkeye, Starfox), since he recently quit, he pushes past them into a private meeting with Wasp, Thor, and Captain America. Tony tries to explain the situation to them but his clumsiness in the unfamiliar armor only convinces them he is drunk. They try to restrain him and a battle breaks out, Tony accidentally defeating his former colleagues. He escapes and they don’t follow him because a more urgent situation involving Ultron has arisen….

His only recourse is to visit Hank Pym, who is angry with (that era’s) Tony for chasing after Janet. After getting a punch to the face, Tony is able to explain what is going on and Hank tentatively agrees to help Tony. He examines a piece of the time machine Tony grabbed as he came through and creates a tracking device to hunt down all the other pieces and discovers there is a part within Ultron. They return to where the Avengers are battling their Adamantium foe and Iron Man’s assistance is timely while Tony is able to guide Ant-Man into Ultron’s body to reach his molecular rearranger and melt Ultron into slag—while also recovering the part from the time machine. Put together, the two components glow and teleport Tony to the next piece—but he remains long enough to assure Hank that he will get through all of this….

2nd story:-

Panic on the Streets of London
Writer: Rob Williams. Art: Ben Oliver. Colors: Veronica Gandini. Letters: Jared K. Fletcher.

Tony Stark lands in a strange version of Great Britain, a totalitarian society run by Sir James Jaspers (a/k/a Mad Jim) where mutants and superhumans are being hunted down and imprisoned. Tony sees the Beetle security forces taken down by Captain Britain, who mistakes Iron Man for one of the baddies and slugs him, breaking the time locator. He and Captain Britain explain their respective situations to one another while repairing the device and Tony learns that the next component is in STRIKE (Britain’s equivalent to SHIELD but turned bad here) headquarters….

Tony gets into STRIKE HQ with a simple ploy: he’s there as himself to sell Britain weapons. He meets with STRIKE head Vixen and knocks her out, heading to the location of the time machine part. It’s in an interrogation room and Tony discovers their prisoner is Douglas Birch; he toys briefly with the idea of killing him there and then to solve the main problem at its source but decides against it. He dons the Iron Man armor to fight his way out as Captain Britain arrives with rebel troops to fight their way in. As the uprising against the evil government begins, Iron Man heads to the next stop on his agenda….

Lee Weeks
Tom Palmer
Matt Hollingsworth
Lee Weeks (Cover Penciler)
Lee Weeks (Cover Inker)
Dan Brown (Cover Colorist)
Letterer: Jared K. Fletcher.
Editor: Thomas Brennan. Editor-in-chief: Axel Alonso.


Listed in Alphabetical Order.


(Hank Pym)
Captain America
Captain America

(Steve Rogers)
Captain Marvel
Captain Marvel

(Monica Rambeau)

(Clint Barton)
Iron Man
Iron Man

(Tony Stark)

(Jennifer Walters)



(Janet Van Dyne)

Plus: Captain Britain (Brian Braddock), James Jaspers, STRIKE, Vixen.

> Iron Age: Book info and issue index

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