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Review: Invincible Iron Man #31

Tony thinks outside the box!

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After he's banned from the expo, Tony reaches outside the box and decides to demo his car independently - - an action that makes him terribly vulnerable to the Hammer girls.

The Good

All this time, I've been praising the writing on this book when the art deserves just as much celebration.  I've followed Larroca's art since the mid 90's and it's really astonishing to see how his art's evolved from a heavy anime influence to the photo real work, here. And while it certainly looks much more realistic, this never has the stiffness that heavily photo-referenced art usually has. From office conversations to high-speed races to explosive mech ambushes, he makes it all look cinematic and exciting.

The Bad

While I've been singing the praises of the book for a while now, a number of friends have countered me with their frustration over this book being a bit too decompressed. With this issue, I'm starting to understand where they were coming from a little better, because this didn't feel as concise a single unit as previous ones have been. While that isn't so much a knock on the quality, it's still worth noting that this'll work better as better as a trade than on its own.

The Verdict - 4/5

I didn't comment on the writing in "the good" because I'd be repeating what I've been saying for months. Fraction's fashioned Iron Man into something that can stand alone outside the Marvel universe, and even out of the trappings of superheroes. Given the success of The Social Network, it's certainly timely to see a comic about a tech start-up where Tony's inter-office relationships and business mistakes are just as exciting as any high-altitude duel.