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Review Group Week 200 - INVINCIBLE IRON MAN #21

Discuss the latest comic book news and front page articles, read or post your own reviews of comics, and talk about anything comic book related. Threads from the two subforums below will also show up here. News Stand topics can also be read and posted in from The Asylum.

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Postby Chris » Mon Dec 14, 2009 10:53 am

Chubbles wrote:I'm with Tony Stark in regards to the civil war storyline. I've said this before but the superheroes jobs are to protect people and if having them run around with no consequences endangered people then I'm all for the forced registration. Tony wasn't trying to make their identities public knowledge, he was going to store them in his head just so that if shit hit the fan there would be accountability. I'm a huge mark for Cap but I was with Tony throughout.


And we've all seen how safe SHIELD and Tony's head really were in the end, didn't we?

The MU is not the real world. Super-villains always find ways around the system.

All it would take is one villain finding out a hero's identity to royally fuck his life up, and that'd be the end of that.

How far would the Registration have gone if some villain of Spidey's killed all his loved ones after he came out?
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Postby MrBlack » Mon Dec 14, 2009 10:54 am

Chubbles wrote:I'm with Tony Stark in regards to the civil war storyline. I've said this before but the superheroes jobs are to protect people and if having them run around with no consequences endangered people then I'm all for the forced registration. Tony wasn't trying to make their identities public knowledge, he was going to store them in his head just so that if shit hit the fan there would be accountability. I'm a huge mark for Cap but I was with Tony throughout.

I always thought that it depended on how you ask the question. In the real world, superheroes should not exist. To the extent they should, Iron Man was on the right side of the debate.

In the Marvel Universe, superheroes are a given, and are a good thing. Any attempt to bring them under government control (remember, the government is frequently the bad guy in comic book land) is probably a terrible idea, no matter who is in charge. So, in comic book world, I think Captain America was right.

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Postby MrBlack » Mon Dec 14, 2009 10:56 am

I read this week's book, and will try to get a review up when I get home tonight.

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Postby Chubbles » Mon Dec 14, 2009 10:59 am

Chris wrote:And we've all seen how safe SHIELD and Tony's head really were in the end, didn't we?

The MU is not the real world. Super-villains always find ways around the system.

All it would take is one villain finding out a hero's identity to royally fuck his life up, and that'd be the end of that.

How far would the Registration have gone if some villain of Spidey's killed all his loved ones after he came out?


Of course villains would have gotten around it, they always do. I just think Tony's heart was in the right place and in theory his side was more correct. In practice, obviously villains will always fuck shit up. Some bad things happened under Tony's rule (Bill Foster, Clor, using villains to catch heroes) but he was in a really tough spot of having to do what the public wanted even if it meant selling out his friends.

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Postby Chubbles » Mon Dec 14, 2009 11:00 am

MrBlack wrote:I always thought that it depended on how you ask the question. In the real world, superheroes should not exist. To the extent they should, Iron Man was on the right side of the debate.

In the Marvel Universe, superheroes are a given, and are a good thing. Any attempt to bring them under government control (remember, the government is frequently the bad guy in comic book land) is probably a terrible idea, no matter who is in charge. So, in comic book world, I think Captain America was right.


i guess i was looking at civil war more in a real world scenario so under this argument i can see where you and chris could be right.

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Postby Chris » Mon Dec 14, 2009 11:59 am

Chubbles wrote:Of course villains would have gotten around it, they always do. I just think Tony's heart was in the right place and in theory his side was more correct. In practice, obviously villains will always fuck shit up. Some bad things happened under Tony's rule (Bill Foster, Clor, using villains to catch heroes) but he was in a really tough spot of having to do what the public wanted even if it meant selling out his friends.


I think, at that point, he should've sided with his friends. I mean, the public doesn't know what they want. Ever.

Shit like Meet the Spartans are number one movies in theaters. The public is reactionary and stupid.

And in the end, the registration side ended up being the fucked up one.
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Postby Stalzer2002 » Mon Dec 14, 2009 12:11 pm

MrBlack wrote:I always thought that it depended on how you ask the question. In the real world, superheroes should not exist. To the extent they should, Iron Man was on the right side of the debate.

In the Marvel Universe, superheroes are a given, and are a good thing. Any attempt to bring them under government control (remember, the government is frequently the bad guy in comic book land) is probably a terrible idea, no matter who is in charge. So, in comic book world, I think Captain America was right.


Well, that's ultimately why Civil War was such an awful story. They were trying for a "real world" metaphor that absolutely falls apart under the slightest bit of scrutiny. You can't have vigilante superheroes taking the freedom side in a freedom versus security debate. Our idea of freedom is based around a system of civil rights and due process. Vigilantes, by defintion, ignore all of that.

But even in Marvel Universe context, I think that Tony was right. You take it as a given that superheroes are a good thing. I don't agree. Is it a good thing when Daredevil tortures people for information? Is it a good thing when the Fantastic Four and the X-Men operate secret prisons? Is it a good thing when the Avengers and the X-Men harbor known criminals? Is it a good thing when Spider-Man busts in on criminals without a warrant? Is it a good thing when Luke Cage never testifies in court? Let's face it, even in the Marvel Universe, superheroes do horrible things in the name of keeping people safe. Not free. Safe. Now, in the past, I'd been able to ignore this and enjoy the story. But since Marvel had to bring it all in with Civil War, it becomes important for discussion.

Which brings us back to why a lot of readers took sides with Civil War. I don't think it had much to do with politics, because the political metaphor falls apart so easily. I don't think it had much to do with Americans identifing with Captain America, because Cap isn't that popular. I think it is more about the fanboy resistance to change. Marvel knew that their characters had been vigilantes since the early 1960s, and that the fanboys wouldn't want that to change. They also gambled that, particularly in the current political climate, most of their readers would be politically progressive. They cast the vigilante as the heroic defender of civil liberties and crossed their fingers, hoping that no one would notice that it just didn't make sense in either a real world or Marvel Universe context. Sadly, it seems to have worked.

And that, ladies and gentlemen, is why Civil War is, in my mind, the worst comic book story ever published.
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Postby Old Man » Mon Dec 14, 2009 2:06 pm

Why so few reviews this week? I deliberately chose a book that everyone should ha ve been able to find.
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Postby ****** » Tue Dec 15, 2009 9:35 am

Old Man wrote:Why so few reviews this week? I deliberately chose a book that everyone should ha ve been able to find.


It's always kind of slow this time of year, but yeah... SLACKERS! :x

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Postby Punchy » Tue Dec 15, 2009 9:39 am

amlah6 wrote:It's always kind of slow this time of year, but yeah... SLACKERS! :x


I wrote my longest review in a while.

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Postby 3MJ » Tue Dec 15, 2009 9:42 am

I would love to review this, and I went up into town. It seems my old LCS focuses less on comics now, and thus had sold out of it. With funds tight aroudn Christmas, I can't order this till I do my end of month order, else I'd be paying to much in shipping. I will review it eventually though.

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Postby thefourthman » Tue Dec 15, 2009 11:20 am

Invincible Iron Man #21
Written by Matt Fraction
Illustrated by Salvador Larroca

It's no big secret that I hate, hate, hate needless decompression. I've rethought my stance on the practice after falling in love with Vagabond which is a book that may go multiple volumes for a fight. There is an attention to detail there that makes the practice work.

Being that what it is, I have softened my stance on making stories longer. I am not as quick to cry foul when I see it and Fraction is not doing too bad of a job here. The issue is accessible on its own, which is one of my major problems with say, JMS's Thor run, it is so strung out that an issue is such a small piece that you can't figure it out with out reading the rest of the book. When the story is strong enough to warrant it, you can find enjoyment in that level of detail. "World's Most Wanted" was not such a story. It dragged on way too long and two issues into Dissasembled, we have not seen much happen. That being the case, it is not boring.

Sure there is an awful lot of talking, but this is a pure second act kind of like The Empire Strikes Back... there are still story strings being brought to the table, while others are being carried along and there is a certain string that is brought to rest by the end of this issue.

Fraction was always a high concept guy, and this story seems to fit him. I hate to see the true end of the Extremis era, that was one of the cooler things Ellis ever thought up in his for hire work, but the thought of Iron Man being all cranked up by Thor is pretty cool and the way that the Ghost finds out Tony's Location shows some ingenuity from the writer.

Last issue I thought the inner workings of Tony worked well, here, I am not so sure, especially given that the scenes seem to be behind the recording that Tony has walking his friends through his revival. There is also the curious title of the storyline... Tony has been disassembled, this should be the reforming of his mind and body, it makes me wonder what exactly Fraction has in store with us, especially given a reinstated Rhodey.

A solid book all in all. It has its high points and its low points like every mainstream superhero book. This one is no different.

On a side note, I really dig Larroca, could they please for the love of god get him a better colorist. D'Armata can't decide to color the book like Granov, Isanove, more run of the mill colorists or like Keith on Newuniversal, it gives Larroca's art the feeling that it is all over the place. I am guessing that he thinks he is defining the different atmospheres or settings of the comic, but all he is doing is making the penciller look bad. Let him stick to the Finchs and Quesadas that his coloring style works with, Larroca needs a more talented colorist.

Story 7
Art 6
Overall 6.5

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Postby thefourthman » Tue Dec 15, 2009 11:22 am

Old Man wrote:Why so few reviews this week? I deliberately chose a book that everyone should ha ve been able to find.

Iron Man's sales have tanked because of World's Most Wanted, the hype behind this storyline picked up the interest in the title, hopefully it remains a decent seller, but when I go from selling ten shelf copies to selling out of twenty the day it goes on sale, the book may be hard to find.

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Postby Chris » Tue Dec 15, 2009 11:23 am

I don't get the hate for World's Most Wanted..

It was a very long arc, yes.. but I loved it. Although I imagine it probably does read much better in trade, as I've read it. (well.. the first trade, and then just stockpiling the rest of the issues and reading them at once)

This was the same with the Mr. Fear arc of Brubaker's DD.
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Postby thefourthman » Tue Dec 15, 2009 11:24 am

amlah6 wrote:It's always kind of slow this time of year, but yeah... SLACKERS! :x

you know, fuck reviews, this has been a good thread with lots of great discussion at the end of the day that is just as important as everyone participating.

I will try to knock out my two missing reviews in the coming days. I almost have my pc at home back up to full speed after it came back from the shop. I didn't realize how much stuff I use on a daily basis had been added since my last restore point. And that Kerpasky that Jude recommended has already been invaluable, I will be upgrading to the full version in January.

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