Written by: Nathan Edmondson
Art by: Matteo Buffagni
The Ultimate Comics series of books from Marvel is supposed to be a place where creative can go and play with Marvel characters and stories with complete freedom including not being tied down by the standard universe story arcs and history. Ultimate Comics Spider-man has really taken the most advantage of this opportunity by creating a Spider-man that isn’t even Peter Parker and even giving the character some different powers. When this line launched one of the first titles was a limited Hawkeye story, now they’re at it again with a limited Iron Man story.
So this first book in the four issue Ultimate Comics Iron Man doesn’t actually play with the character’s overall history that much. A new character and company is added to his past but he’s basically the same Tony Stark/Iron Man that we all know and love. We get glimpses of his past via flashback and those glimpses tie directly into what is coming for the character in this story arc. The characters here are pretty well defined and the depth for Tony is handled well in this book by defining his relationship with his father and how it influences his decision making and how he has become a different person after a tragedy in his life. So the character development is intriguing, and that’s a good thing considering where the story appears to be going.
Past Iron Man stories have seen Stark go through company espionage and having his own technology turned against him and even his company and assets taken from him. The capitalist moniker has always played a part in the Iron Man story, which is why it would have been nice to have not seen it in this new story. The Ultimate Comics world is supposed to be about different not just another classic story. Hopefully something new will be brought to this story that we haven’t seen before. At this point though this story feels very familiar. As I previously mentioned the character development is interesting and maybe that’s where we are supposed to be looking. With that said though Stark going through a personal struggle has been expertly done with previous arcs such as Demon in a Bottle which was personal and focused on his company and assets.
Ultimate Comics Iron Man #1 isn’t bad it’s just nothing new and it’s not particularly exciting. It’s just another Iron Man story, at least so far.
Non-human things are extremely well rendered in this book but the humans are lacking detail in their faces specifically. If it weren’t for facial hair it would be a little difficult to tell some of the men apart. There are times in some panels when faces amounted to just a few quick lines. This may be a stylistic decision and if it is it just doesn’t work alongside the better detailed mechanical parts of the book. The color palette is nice and the subtle differences in the flashbacks are also not abrasive but it tells the story.
I am an Iron Man fan, I love him in the Avengers team books but this series may define why his stories should have limited runs. Can something truly unique be done with this character in a solo book? Well, the answer is yes. Matt Fraction did it when he reinvented the character in the Invincible Iron Man books but it’s less common to see than it should be.
Overall (Not an Average) 6.5/10
The Story 6/10
The Art 6.5/10
Overall (Not an Average) 6.5/10