REVIEW: ‘Iron Man,’ Issue #20

Reading Time: 3 minutes

Iron Man #20 - But Why Tho - But Why Tho

Iron Man #20 is published by Marvel Comics, written by Christopher Cantwell, art by Angel Unzueta, Frank D’Armata, and colour by Joe Caramagna. Iron Man has left rehab and is trying to get life back on track. Both his relationship with Hellcat and his work at Stark Unlimited may need some time to rebuild. Especially with a giant gorilla thrown in the mix.

It is a weird thing to say after twenty issues of a series, but Iron Man #20 is the first start of a new arc this comic has had since the first chapter. Therefore, this comic really does feel strange at first. Cantwell makes a fresh start with clear minds throughout. There is still a hangover with the multiple, massive events of the last arc that are addressed quickly, but there is a forward momentum to the comic. It returns to much of what Iron Man stories are known for, inventions and crimefighting. The actual plot is chaotic and zany, combing bizarre characters with a ridiculous piece of action. This is a side to this Iron Man run that has often been unseen; that willingness to embrace weird. There are some very funny moments, but also some deeply serious and emotional parts. The unexpected twist came at the start of the comic, but its ramifications aren’t revealed until much later.

For Tony, this is a point of his life that is not new. Coming out of rehab and trying to carry on as normal is common with this character. Except before he didn’t have the power of a god, alter peoples’ bodies and minds and murder then revive his friends. This reset may be as awkward as ever, and the writer brilliantly encapsulates the unease of everyone in the issue. That suspense is difficult to infuse into a comic script, yet it is so prevalent here. 

The art is fantastic. Unzueta has a photorealistic art style that has largely been a mainstay in this book since the start of the run. There is a superb understanding of how bodies look from different angles within this particular style, with excellent muscle definition and facial expressions. Both Tony and Patsy are excellent, and the Iron Man armour is incredible. The piece that doesn’t it all of the time is the villain of the issue. Because they aren’t human, a different design is needed, and within this art style the character can look out of place. Some of the poses look out of place, as does the shading.

The colours are really good. The shades and tones used within Iron Man #20 are very unique due to how realistic they all are. D’Armata utilises very light tones within this issue, with sky blue and greys being the primary background shades. But there is also a lot of black, from Stark’s suit and the villain, and the relationship between the light and the various textures in the foreground is fascinating. The lettering is brilliant and easy to read.

Iron Man #20 is the first fresh start in a while. And mostly it succeeds in bringing the story forwards and bringing something different into this series. With so many issues attributed to the first arc, this feels a lot like a new volume. There are many exciting new threads beginning to be built and a really ludicrous first fight of the second arc. It is difficult to know where the run will progress from here as this issue felt much like a transition, shedding lingering questions from the last one.  

Iron Man #20 is available where comics are sold. 


Iron Man #20
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TL;DR

Iron Man #20 is the first fresh start in a while. And mostly it succeeds in bringing the story forwards and bringing something different into this series. With so many issues attributed to the first arc, this feels a lot like a new volume. There are many exciting new threads beginning to be built and a really ludicrous first fight of the second arc. It is difficult to know where the run will progress from here as this issue felt much like a transition, shedding lingering questions from the last one.