Iron Man: 9 Best Comic Issues Of The 2010s | ScreenRant – Screen Rant

From fighting a second Civil War to becoming a full-fledged villain, the 2010s were monumental for Iron Man in the world of Marvel comics.
With Robert Downey Jr’s Iron Man the star of several major Marvel Cinematic Universe productions, the armored Avenger’s popularity soared even in comic books of this period. Apart from Tony Stark’s usual adventures, a few of the 2010s-era comics also involved him in new versions such as Noir Iron Man and the Superior Iron Man.
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Crossover events like the second Civil War and Iron Man 2020 also added more dimensions to his character arcs. This particular decade saw him turn into a more troubled and thoughtful individual. With allies such as Captain Marvel and even blood relatives like Arno Star, he engages in ideological conflicts that affect his fate in the comic book continuity.
The Marvel Noir series reimagines popular Marvel superheroes in noir-heavy storylines set in the early decades of the 20th century. In Iron Man’s case, his stint with the Noir universe begins in 1938 with iron magnate Tony Stark touring all over the world in search of mystical treasures like the Fountain of Youth. However, he must don his armor and become a responsible hero when an insider sells Stark Industry secrets to Nazi sympathizers.
Iron Man Noir is bound to excite fans for it reinterprets several classic elements of the characters. For instance, Stark’s initial armor of choice resembles the Iron Monger suit. His pursuit of eternal wonders is also rooted in his attempts to cure a fatal disease which is similar to his condition in the 2000s comic issue Extremis.
Iron Man 2020 features Arno Stark as the titular character in the multiverse dimension of Earth-8410. With Tony questioning his own existence, Arno seizes his uncle’s company and the mantle of Iron Man. The latter’s megalomania rises to the extent that he plans to install a mind-controlling device in the Stark Space Station to enslave all of human society.
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Arno has always had grey areas as a mercenary working for capitalist ventures. But in Iron Man 2020, his villainy comes out in the open and he poses to be a major threat to Tony. At the end of the day, the storyline also shows the downside of modern technology as most of Arno’s actions stem from Tony’s innovations.
In Time Runs Out, Iron Man and Illuminati are declared as fugitives and villains of the Avengers. This only compels Captain America and his allies to wage an all-out war against them. Iron Man, on the other hand, has his own share of enemies as even Namor captures him in the initial issues.
Following Civil War, readers understood that the mistakes of Captain America and Iron Man can lead to intense duels. Time Runs Out only bears testimony to this fact. In fact, his arrogance also drives his own Illuminati peers to be at loggerheads with him. The introspective storyline proves that Tony has his own demons to battle and his leadership suffers because of that.
Authored by Ultimate Marvel stalwart Garth Ennis, this storyline is a modern update on the 1980s Iron Man comic issue Armor Wars. This version of the tale is set in a world with a crumbling economy and ravaged environment. Stark’s own company is in peril in the face of such disaster. If these worries weren’t enough, he must also deal with all of his armors being taken away from him.
The comic is a must-read for fans as it features the Marvel multiversal variant Ultimate Iron Man. The spotlight is on his many armors including the ones that are built for specific heroes like Thor and Spider-Man. In his quest to save his enterprise, he also encounters new characters like his grandfather Howard Stark Sr. and Justine Hammer, Justin Hammer’s superhuman daughter.
Released two years after the first Iron Man film, I Am Iron Man is a visual retelling of the same. The plot is virtually the same as Mark Fergus and Hawk Ostby’s screenplay along with a few original scenes such as Iron Man meeting Nick Fury.
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Named after the famous closing lines from the 2008 film, the two-part miniseries makes for an essential collector’s item for fans of the film franchise as well as the comics. The new panels also serve as an added bonus for readers with Nick Fury hinting at the possibility of setting up the Avengers.
Set within the Ultimates universe, Ultimate Comics: Iron Man finds Tony Stark in one of his self-destructive moods as he unleashes a conspiracy related to Mandarin. All this time, his own personal relationships grow strained with friends like Rhodey and Carol Danvers (who doubles as Pepper Pott’s alternative).
There are major changes that set it apart from the MCU and Marvel Comics continuity. Jarvis goes back to his human roots as Tony Stark’s wise butler. As for Mandarin, this time it’s not one villain but rather a whole organization. The new Mandarin is a worthy update on the Iron Man comic book villain that is suited for modern readers.
Civil War II kicks off with Captain Marvel using the prophetic powers of an Inhuman called Ulysses to prevent future catastrophes. However, Iron Man warns her from relying on these prophecies as Ulysses’ source of power is unknown and his visions might interfere with the present timeline.
The first edition of Civil War is a Marvel comic for essential reading, largely touching upon the conflict between Iron Man and his longtime ally Captain America. Its highly anticipated sequel yet again finds Tony Stark going against an Avenger and wreaking havoc within the Marvel universe.
Following Tony Stark’s death in Civil War II, Doctor Doom is struck with such guilt that he decides to be a hero for a change. Under the guise of Iron Man, Doom finds a new purpose in life even if members of the Avengers and Fantastic Four continue doubting his intentions.
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Both Doom and Stark have been technological geniuses albeit with different intentions. But Infamous Iron Man allows him to undo his wrongs with a notable redeeming arc. His adventures are captivating enough as he teams up with Doctor Strange to fight Mephisto, has a heart-to-heart conversation with The Thing, and so on.
Iron Man has had polarizing aspects in his personality but in Superior Iron Man, he sets out to become a full-fledged villain. A new symbiotic suit brings out his darkest qualities in the forefront and only his lover Peper Potts can stop him now. This evil version’s enemies also include Daredevil and even Tony Stark’s own memory (stored as artificial intelligence).
Seeing Iron Man as this cocky, homicidal antagonist turns Tony Stark into an intimidating tyrant. Even as a hero, Stark has had a dubious personality but now, he becomes an unstoppable force on his own. Fans of Pepper would also have a good time as her role is considerably increased in the face of such a crisis.
NEXT: 10 Times MCU’s Tony Stark Was The Smartest Person In The Room
Shaurya Thapa is an Indian freelance journalist who mostly dabbles in writings on cinema, music, and human interest features. When it comes to Screen Rant, he writes lists on a wide array of subjects ranging from international films to mainstream Netflix series and comic book trivia. He also hosts a podcast called ‘BhindiWire’, an Indian parody of IndieWire.


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