The Invincible Iron Man #13

The Invincible Iron Man #13 Matt Fraction Salvador Larroca

Still dealing the direct effects of Dark Reign, Tony is on the run and literally losing his mind. What worked. The art, as usual with Larroca, is just beautiful. You could look at these panels in any order and it would still be a great read on the strength of the art alone. Osborn is still hot after Tony Stark, for personal and professional reasons. No uneasy status quo has been established. A similar situation was handled really well right after the Civil War. As readers, we keep wondering how they are going re-set a comfortable "new normal" and the thrilling answer is......they don't. Tony has NOT gotten past the events of Secret Invasion, nor has there been some Dark Reign trumping card been played. Osborn still clearly has the upper hand and Stark is rapidly depleting his resources with no clever game-flipping checkmate in sight. The tension is mounting higher and higher because actually is out of options. Every issue he barely slips through the net one more time, worse for the encounter. How much longer can he last? Clearly SOMETHING will happen to level things off.....but thus far theer have been no fake deaths or envelopes of evidence to be mailed to the press. The tease images of what Stark's ultimate answer wil be look awesome.

What did not work. The one slight "cheap-out" in this story arc is Tony's SLOW deterioration. In the first chapter, it seemed as though it would be an instant mind wipe, not the gradual mental decline that seems to be happening over days and days. I just expected that rug to be pulled out really quick. THAT would have been a cool story twist....but so is this.