Overview

Ultimate Iron Man # 1

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Ultimate Iron Man # 1

Credits

  • Words: Orson Scott Card
  • Art: Andy Kubert
  • Inks: Danny Miki
  • Colors: Richard Isanove
  • Story Title: N/A
  • Publisher: Marvel Comics
  • Price: $2.99
  • Release Date: Mar 2, 2005

Prolific sci-fi author Orson Scott Card brings his iconoclastic talent to Marvel’s Ultimate Line.

I should first go on record and say I haven’t been tickled pink by the idea behind Marvel’s Ultimate line, but the debut of Ultimate Iron Man has swayed my opinion of late. I think much of that goes to writer Orson Scott Card, whose tackling the medium of comics for the first time with this series. Joining him on this superb project is artist Andy Kubert and inker Danny Miki, who both lend a tremendous amount of credibility to the book as well. So without further fanfare, let’s get to the heart of the story.

Ultimate Iron Man begins in the past with Tony’s father Howard Stark hard at work on perfecting new technological body armor. His idea is revolutionary, since it encompasses the use of liquid metal formed from supercharged bacteria. Now this concept may sound a little farfetched to most, but Orson Scott Card grounds the material around the characters involved. He succeeds here with the obsessive portrayal of Howard Stark as a man driven by his passions of science and personal relationships. Howard is also embroidered in a sticky divorce from his first wife, who’s seen scheming behind his back to steal the company from him with the help from one of his competitors. But this is only the tip of the iceberg, as Howard must also deal with the upcoming birth of his child with a hotshot geneticist who’s helping him stabilize the bacteria to further perfect the armor.

Intrigued enough yet? I am hoping you are since ol' shellhead himself doesn’t really make an appearance in this issue, although the ending does set it up nicely for Iron Man’s future arrival within this series. I think much of this should be attributed to Orson Scott Card, and I believe he’s done a fine job with the set-up of the characters involved. It’s obvious that a writer of his caliber can craft an engaging book with an interesting premise to go along with a more scientific approach to Iron Man. I would think the remaining 5 issues of the series will be a treat to read whether you are a sci-fi fan or not.
The art will also play a pivotal role in depicting the techno-laden landscape of Ultimate Iron Man. The artist team of Andy Kubert and Danny Miki are seasoned professionals with an equally large list of impressive credits in comics. Andy is more than capable as a skilled draftsman, and it surprised me to find him so adept at illustrating the emotional human drama in the first issue. Again, a large part of this should go to his inker Danny Miki, who’s a solid artist in his own right. The two supremely compliment each other and it will make an interesting read as the series progresses.

So, if you enjoy comics with an emotional edge and a touch of sci-fi added in for good measure, then you should pick up a copy of Ultimate Iron Man. There’s history in the making here, and it happens to be Orson Scott Card’s impressive debut. Check it out and - may I dare say - you won’t be disappointed. 

- Kenneth Gallant

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