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The Order #10: Review

Apr 2008
Matt Fraction, Javier Saltares

Story Name:

10: Pepper --or-- Into the black

Review & Comments

4 stars

The Order #10 Review by (October 21, 2015)
Barry Kitson just does the breakdowns again. The Softly robots join the rest of Zeke Stane's minions in Marvel limbo from this issue. Pepper Potts does go to work for Tony Stark. The Marvel Chronology Project puts her next appearance in the 2nd story in the Iron Protocols 1-shot, where she faces Tony's jealous AI ex-assistant Friday. Then she's a regular from IM(2008)#1 to just before Secret Wars (and maybe beyond). Matt Fraction also takes Ezekiel Stane with him to the IM(2008) series where he's the 1st and recurring villain. The Order team will continue but Kate Kildare won't be part of it. Instead Fraction will import her into his run on Uncanny X-Men to be their PR when they relocate to California. Anthem, Calamity, Supernaut and Veda (but not Aralune) pop up with their powers back in Eternals (2008) #2. Then those 4 without Veda are in Initiative #18 within Secret Invasion. Henry Hellrung will meet with Stark in IM(2008)#11 when Tony's on the run during Dark Reign. The whole team will appear scattered through issues of Fear Itself: Youth In Revolt. Hellrung and Stark meet again in IM(2008)#512, when Tony's in trouble again. Then they just fade away, apart from a crowd scene appearance for Calamity, Supernaut and Veda in Deadpool (2013) #45.


Synopsis / Summary / Plot

The Order #10 Synopsis by Rob Johnson
The opening interview this time isn't a flashback, it's Tony Stark grilling Pepper Potts over what went wrong with the Order's mission. She recaps how they tracked SHADOW to their base near the Salton Sea and then she lost contact with them. She and Kate Kildare contacted Stark and SHIELD last issue.

When Iron Man and SHIELD got there they discovered that the team had lost their artificial superpowers to an EMP. This had killed Heavy/Dennis Murray (last issue). SHIELD rounded up the broken SHADOW Softly robots, Cut/Wendy of the Black Dahlias (the other Dahlias are dead), Infernal Man and Maul. But Ezekiel Stane and Mulholland Black were missing.

Since then SHIELD has been trying to handle something that has happened to Los Angeles because of Holly. And the remaining unpowered Order members have sneaked off the SHIELD Helicarrier in a shuttle. Now read on.

The team go back to their Bradbury Building HQ where James Wu gets fitted with normal prosthetic legs of the Oscar Pistorius type. Milo Fields' repaired paraplegia, cured when he merged with Becky Ryan to form Hybrid, was apparently not undone by the EMP. Everyone agrees to go find Mulholland.

She's in a car driven by Stane. Her out-of-control amplified powers are driving Angelenos insane, and the city has erupted in riots and flames. Zeke also has at least 1 of the Gen'l Softly robots out stirring up discord between Angeleno factions (they listen to him because he's an authority figure!). His mad scheme is still to give Tony Stark a problem too big to fix.

Zeke takes Holly to the Watts Towers and carries her up to the top of the tallest 1. (He claims along the way that her original mutant power hasn't returned as she thought. Instead Stane super-boosted her artificial Order power.) Then he leaves her there to get on with his life while she fuels Los Angeles' craziness until she burns out.

The Order are on their way, heading for the worst of the chaos, expecting that's where Holly will be. But they stop to save a pregnant mother from a mob. And only just escape with their own lives. (Mullholland is apparently automatically shielding them from her brain emissions.)

Then they arrive at the Watts Towers, wreathed in energy discharges. Henry Hellrung leaps from the shuttlecar to the platform where they see Holly. He almost doesn't make it, but Holly stirs from her pain to save him.

Henry tries to calm and comfort her as Holly begs him to make the agony stop. Then he shields her from the view of the other Order members in the shuttle. And I guess he breaks her neck.

In the morning the city is calm as Iron Man and SHIELD restore order. The unknown Ezekiel Stane steps out of a crowd and pretends to be a fan of the Golden Avenger. But under his breath he mutters that his vengeance (for the suicide of his father Obadiah) isn't over.

2 days later Tony interviews Pepper again. She accepts the offer to come work for him again. He says he's going to turn the Order into 1 of the ordinary Initiative superteams, with existing super-people rather than creating them witrh artificial powers. But he agrees to leave Henry and Kate in charge.

Then Stark talks to Hellrung, but this time he offers the team their artificial powers back. Henry accepts for them, but on the condition that they be allowed to hunt down Stane. But Tony says that there is no trace of Ezekiel Stane's existence - he's living off the grid.

Javier Saltares
Nelson DeCastro
Brendan McCarthy
Barry Kitson (Cover Penciler)
Barry Kitson (Cover Inker)
Barry Kitson (Cover Colorist)


Listed in Alphabetical Order.

Iron Man
Iron Man

(Tony Stark)

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