The Invincible Iron Man
This is it! The (thrilling?) conclusion of our re-reading The Invincible Iron Man series, which has covered the entire Matt Fraction and Salvador Larroca series over the course of — let’s see … one, two, three, four — five posts. Today, we look at the last year and a half worth of issues, which are collected in a trio of trades that see our hero facing off against his ultimate villain in an attempt to save the world from destruction. (Spoiler warning: He succeeds.)
Ready for the penultimate installment of our re-reading of writer Matt Fraction and artist Salvador Larroca’s impressive five-year, 60-ish issue run on The Invincible Iron Man? Well, if not, you can always come back later when you are; it will be right here waiting.
Today we look at one official part of the run, and two more collections worth of Fraction-written Iron Man comics, which aren’t necessarily labeled as part of The Invincible Iron Man, because Marvel moves in mysterious ways.
Vol. 8 Unfixable (#501-503, Free Comic Book Day 2010 Iron Man/Thor, Rescue #1): With this volume, the drifting of the narrative glimpsed in the previous volume becomes more pronounced, with the bulk of the collection devoted to the next chapter of the Invincible Iron Man storyline and ending, mid-book, with a “Continued In FEAR ITSELF!” tag, and a pair of one-shots that sorta distract from the ongoing story (but certainly needed to be collected somewhere, if only for us wait-for-the-trade types) filling up the rest of the book.
In the title story, Stark is busily pitching his repulsor technology’s consumer applications, when he’s interrupted by “the post-life crisis ” of Spider-Man’s villain Otto “Doctor Octopus” Octavius, who, in the Spider-Man books of the time, had developed a terminal, degenerative disease and turned himself into a barely recognizable cyborg of sorts, his arms folded and legs tugged up like some sort of mummy awaiting burial, while a mass of mechanical arms did all his moving for him.
No sooner did Marvel Studios confirm development a Guardians of the Galaxy movie at Comic-Con International — moving the cinematic universe in a decidedly more cosmic direction — than the speculator market kicked into gear.
The Los Angeles Times reports that by Sunday afternoon, less than 24 hours after the Marvel announcement, one dealer was trying to sell a near-mint copy of the first appearance for Thanos at 100 times its usual price. The profile of the Mad Titan has, of course, risen considerably since his shadowy cameo in Marvel’s billion-dollar blockbuster The Avengers.
“I’m asking $6,000 for it,” the dealer told Geoff Boucher. “I know that’s high — hey, that’s really high — but that’s next year’s price.”
The comic in question is February 1973′s The Invincible Iron Man #55, by Jim Starlin, Mike Friedrich and Mike Esposito, which another dealer said is unlikely to fetch that hefty figure. However, he said he sold a copy for $1,200, saying, “That is the chosen book this year.”