Last week we took a look at the early history of Captain America. This week we look at the leader on the other side of the Civil War, Iron Man.


Iron Man has gone through a few makeovers over the years.

This is the cover of Tales Of Suspense #39, cover dated March of 1963. This was the premiere of the Iron Man character. It was a collaboration between story-plotter Stan Lee, Scripter Larry Lieber, story-artist Don Heck, and cover-artist/character designer Jack Kirby. Stan Lee had been toying with the idea of a businessman superhero, a “quintessential capitalist” who would go against the spirit of the times. Lee said,


Lee set out to make Tony Stark a wealthly ladies man, but with a dark secret. Writer Gerry Conway said,

Lee based the character’s look on Howard Hughes.

Lee had intended to write the story himself [6], but a minor deadling emergency forced him to hand ove rhte premiere issue to Lieber, who fleshed out the story.[6] The art was split between Kirby and Heck. Heck said that Jack Kirby designed the costume because he was doing the cover.[7]. The costume was replaced by a golden version in Issue #49 in April of 1963. In Issue 48 it got redisgned again as a sleeker, red and golden armor by that issues interior artist Steve Ditko, although Kirby drew it on the cover.

Heck recalled in 1985,

Iron Man started out as an anti-communist hero{9}, although Lee later regreted this early focus. [2][10]. Throughout the series technological advancement and national defense were constant themese. The series also started delving into more complexe issues, such as Tony Stark’s alcoholism.

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Well, there you have it folks, a bit of trivia about the man in the iron suit, the Iron Man. I hope you enjoyed this little bit of trivia time and I will see you all on the nexty Midweek Trivia.


Resources

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1. DeFalco, Tom; Gilbert, Laura, ed. (2008). “1960s”. Marvel Chronicle A Year by Year History. Dorling Kindersley. p. 91.ISBN 978-0756641238. Set against the background of the Vietnam War, Iron Man signaled the end of Marvel’s monster/suspense line when he debuted in Tales of Suspense #39...[Stan] Lee discussed the general outline for Iron Man with Larry Lieber, who later wrote a full script for the origin story. Don Heck...designed the new character.”

2. Lee, Stan (1975). Son of Origins of Marvel Comics. New York: Simon & Schuster. p. 45. ISBN 978-0671221669.

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3. Lee, Stan; Mair, George (2002). Excelsior! : The Amazing Life of Stan Lee. New York: Simon & Schuster. p. 160. ISBN 978-0684873053.

4. The Invincible Iron Man (Ultimate 2-Disc Edition Iron Man DVD). Paramount Pictures. 2008.

5. “Mask of the Iron Man”. Game Informer (177): 81. January 2008.

6. Lee, Son of Origins of Marvel Comics pp. 46-48

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7. Daniels, Les (1991). Marvel: Five Fabulous Decades of the World’s Greatest Comics. Harry N. Abrams. p. 99. ISBN 9780810938212.

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8. Heck, quoted in Peel, John (March–April 1985). “A Signing Session with Don Heck”. Comics Feature (34). p. 18.

9. Lee, Mike (April 30, 2013). “Little-known sci-fi fact: Stan Lee thought Marvel’s readers would HATE Iron Man (at first)“. Blastr. Archived from the original on November 17, 2015. Retrieved May 7, 2015. In the years following his debut, Iron Man fought against the tyranny of communism, corporate crime, terrorism and alcoholism as a “second-tier” Marvel hero, despite always being a popular character amongst readers.

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10. Wright, Bradford (2001). Comic Book Nation. Baltimore MD: Johns Hopkins University Press. p. 336.ISBN 0-8018-6514-X.