I can't believe how engaging it was just to read scenes where Tony's doing job interviews, but that just speaks to the strength of Fraction and Larroca's talents. Like I said with the Mandarin origin annual that just came out, this didn't feel like another superhero title - - this was a gripping story about a maverick entrepenuer trying to change the world from the ground-up. It would be just as engrossing on its own, sui generis. Larocca's responsible for a lot of that. Waiting rooms,subaways, mecha battles... he handles it all equally well. Back to what I said about this standing on its own - - the great thing is that Fraction doesn't cheat with issues of past history and he's actually turning an unpopular "restart" into a source of some fascinating scenes. The way Tony and his associates refers to his "other life" before the mind-wipe is setting this up for a great character analysis of a flamboyant personality who can be described as charming or bullheaded depending on who's talking about him.
Because I need to put something here, I'll say that the gag about "teachable moments" having the same word as "waste of time" in Mandarin went on a bit too long. Then again, maybe that was the point, since it was a bit of childish grabass between Tony and Rhodey.
The Verdict - 5/5
Month in, month out, I'm always putting Invincible Iron Man on top of my reading pile. It's so consistently good, I'm running out of superlatives to level on it. Between this and the superb annual froma couple weeks ago, Fraction's run on Iron Man is quickly shaping up to be a definitive era for this title and this character. Go back and get the back-issues that started this storyline,and catch-up to this issue. I gaurantee it'll be worth it.