had several different Iron Man comics and storylines in mind to review
on this blog, and I'll hopefully be getting to all of them at some point. I
went with this one, though, because it was the very first Iron Man comic
I'd ever read. I'd only previously known about him from the arcade game Captain America & The Avengers, and a couple of brief appearances in How To Draw Comics The Marvel Way. I came across the trade paperback The Many Armors of Iron Man
at a bookstore, reprinting various stories from the character's
history. This was the first story in said collection, and it became the
first of many Iron Man stories I'd read and collect over the years.
(Iron Man's been a heavy-hitter of my comic collection for a number of
years.) So there's a bit of sentimentality on my part in picking this
one before any of the others.
The creation of Iron Man is actually a pretty funny story (since this particular comic recaps the character's origins, I'm going to save that for when I summarize the plot). Stan Lee deliberately tried to create a superhero that would represent everything the 1960s counter-culture movement opposed, but who would still be someone readers could like and sympathize with. And thus we got Anthony Stark - playboy, scientist, inventor, munitions manufacturer for the United States military - and his armored alter-ego. Iron Man made his debut in Tales of Suspense #39 (March, 1963), a science-fiction anthology series he would headline for a bit before sharing it with Captain America as of Tales of Suspense #59. (Cap ended up taking over the magazine starting with Issue #100, while Iron Man got his own series in May 1968.) In addition to his solo exploits, Iron Man was also a founding member and financier of The Avengers, Marvel's primary superhero team....