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Writer: Brian Michael Bendis / Artist: Mike Deodato /Marvel Comics

So, Brian Michael Bendis’ Invincible Iron Man is off to a pretty decent start despite the strangely uneven ending to the inaugural story arc. The book seems to be a very personal yet somewhat lighthearted character study of a more well adjusted, less morose Tony Stark trying desperately to get his shit together as a person while maintaining life as a CEO and a superhero. It’s really the closest we’ll ever come to seeing a representation of Robert Downey Jr. in an Iron Man comedy drama TNT show.

This week doesn’t see Stark logging much time in the armor, staffing out the hero work instead, letting Rhodey follow up on a couple of mysterious happenings that occurred in the middle of Iron Man’s recent spat with Madame Masque. Honestly, I’m hoping this means Tony’s going to start sharing the spotlight with War Machine the way Clint Barton and Kate Bishop get equal screen time in the Hawkeye books. However, I know that’s aiming a bit high, so I’ll just celebrate that Rhodey is getting to have a good time hitting up informants for leads in Japan and shaking down bad guys. Meanwhile, Tony is left dealing with the most poorly timed encounter with Doctor Doom ever.

There is essentially nothing more hilarious than seeing Doctor Doom walk in with Don Draper level swagger for good guy shop talk while Iron Man basically keeps reiterating, “But you’re evil!” If this were really a sitcom, Victor Von Doom would be a mixture between Newman and Sheldon Cooper. Visually, I think Mike Deodato has reached Peak Mike Deodato at this point and is showing off is this book. His color palette works well for keeping the exposition fun to look at in an issue that is 60% exposition, setting up the premise. Doctor Doom looks like the perfect mixture of handsome know-it-all who would probably be played by Julian McMahon (hey, it wasn’t his fault that movie script was trash) and punchable face that could be played by Guy Pearce.

Bottom Line: The last plot line ended with more of a whimper than a bang, but this issue gives us high hopes that Bendis can turn things around.

9 Big Bang Theory Reruns out of 10

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