Iron Man Noir by Scott Snyder, is part of the run of Noir comics Marvel came out with for a bunch of their characters. Take a regular Marvel character, like Spider-man, Wolverine, or Iron Man, and place him in a time and place that would be something our of an old gangster type movie. Like LA Confidential or the video game LA Noir.
Only Iron Man Noir isn’t really like that. This is not dark. Okay the suit of armor is not shiny and looks like its been under salt water for a while but still, the story is not dark. In fact this is much more like Tony Stark acting like a cross between Indiana Jones and Lara Croft the Tomb Raider without the great ass. Uh, not Indiana’s, Lara Croft’s ass…anyway… this is not Noir.
Maybe that’s why I liked it so much. For once Tony Stark wasn’t a complete sleaze. Of course his selfish actions, like letting the wrong pretty girl get to close and betraying him because hey, how could she not just want to screw Tony Stark! You mean she had other motives. Which get the poor guy writing the story killed and so we need a new writer and here comes Pepper Potts. There’s Namor as a second grade Captain Nemo with purposely cut Spock ears. James Rhodes as the trusty side kick because, hey, without Tony Stark how could a black man in this era have so much fun and adventure? Yes, they actually say something like that.
Did I mention that I actually like this book?
The storyline is as follows. The Nazis, in the form Dr. Zemo and Baron Strucker, are after ancient artifacts of power give them the edge in the upcoming war. Now that doesn’t sound familiar does it? Stark finds the artifact and the Nazis take it away from him. See any Indiana Jones movie to see how that works out.
Okay so the storyline is pretty much stolen. The artwork is actually pretty good and the twists at the end between Tony and his father are pretty good too. If you get past the fact that this is a Indiana Jones rip off. It is a good story.
There are bit players of course. War Machine. Thor. Namor. Jarvis. But the star of this one is Tony Stark and for once he isn’t a complete ass. If this was the Tony Stark that was around in the comics I might have actually liked him. This is the Tony Stark Robert Downey should have played.
So to recap. Stolen story. Not really Noir. Good artwork. Better Tony Stark.