Still struggling to get his life back in order, Tony Stark keeps his friends close and his enemies closer. Pepper Potts gets a new Rescue suit, and Sasha and Justine Hammer have a few tricks up their sleeves.
Fraction does something that few other writers can do, when it comes to "the big two" companies, he makes the set-up to each story as, if not more, interesting than the climax. This book isn't as much about Iron Man as it is about the key players of each story. In this case, we get glimpses of what's going on with Tony, Pepper, The Hammers, and James Rhodes, as this large story slowly starts to come together. In the years of reading Iron Man, this is by far my favorite storyline. It doesn't feel like most comic do, split up into 6-8 issue story arcs. I feel as though we're 29 issues in to one giant arc. I loved seeing how Fraction writes James Rhodes, a man torn between his duty to his country and friends. Sure, we've seen it before with Rhodes, but Fraction makes it seem more believable, and we're also getting glimpses of old Tony Stark, the playboy. But this time, he's more about playing people off of each other than anything else. He's that manipulative jerk we all love. The art of Salvador Larroca doesn't get enough credit for his work on this book. It's wonderful and about as realistic as you can get on a month-to-month schedule. The panel composition is simple, but it feels so much like watching a film. His facial expressions are incredibly realistic, which is always something that really catches my eye. The pacing of this book is perfect as well. I'm never bored flipping through the book, nor do I feel like I didn't get my money's worth. I wouldn't call this a perfect comic book, but it's darn near close.
I know it's becoming cliche to say, but the bad part about this book was that it ended and I know I had to wait another month for the next issue.
The Verdict 5/5- Pick of the week!
Many would complain, well not me, that this book lacks action. Fraction's storytelling follows more of a three act movie format than anything else. You can say the same about many other writers, but Fraction does it best. This book plays out like an incredibly epic film with no real barriers. With the films, there's a lot of politics. The studios want this, the fans want that, Marvel needs this... I'm sure there's a lot of that going into this book as well, but no where near as much. I know I've said it before about this book, but I'll say it again. I don't care if you're a Marvel, DC, Dark Horse, Image, etc fan, you need to read this volume of Iron Man. This is what a great comic looks like.