The end is here.  The A.I.s have won.  Say goodnight, Tony…  Your Major Spoilers review of Iron Man 2020 #6 from Marvel Comics awaits!

IRON MAN 2020 #6

Writer: Dan Slott & Christos Gage
Artist: Pete Woods
Colorist: Pete Woods
Letterer: VC’s Joe Caramagna
Editor: Tom Brevoort
Publisher: Marvel Comics
Cover Price: $4.99
Release Date: August 26, 2020

Previously in Iron Man 2020: Throw out the rest of your stupid, worthless flesh-bag calendars. 2020 is over, man!  The moment Arno Stark has been preparing for is here: the end of all human and artificial life as we know it!  All this time you thought he was just some egomaniacal jerk; well, who’s laughing now?  Well…no one really.  We’re all about to die.


After taking out his brother and preparing for a world-ending event, Arno Stark has finally faced his extinction event…. and failed.  But Tony Stark is still in play, and still his brother, allowing the two Iron Men to combine their strengths and maek one final attack.  As the A.I. team (including Awesome Andy, Machinesmith, Herbie, Jocasta, Machine Man and the revived digital Stark Parents) leap into action, Arno, Tony and Pepper Potts go on the offensive, pushing the creature into Earth’s atmosphere, where the Iron legion awaits.  Even the Avengers get involved, and as Tony and Arno prepare to face the creature, Arno has one last double-cross up his sleeve: Blasting his brother, Arno injects himself into the singularity and saves the day, with Tony telling him that he forgives him for his actions…

…and that he hopes he can someday forgive himself, as we see that, in reality, Tony has placed Arno in stasis once again.  The creature was a delusion, a way for Arno’s mind to grasp that his fatal disease had returned, and Tony simply stuck him in a simulated reality to save his life.


This issue has a number of impressive moments, as well as sweet ones (like “Howard” and “Maria” wanting to upload themselves into Arno’s simulation to give him the family he never really got) and the happy endings abound: Machine Man and Jocasta are together once more, Rhodey is cured of his fear of using powered armor and Tony?  Tony gets to fly off and be the hero, leaving Andy Bhang in control of what was Stark Unlimited,  It’s a pretty solid ending (though I kind of hate the line “I don’t live in the NOW”) and the art is quite impressive throughout.  Even with multiple robots and armored folk in play, Woods keeps everyone’s identity clear and the storytelling is well-handled throughout the issue, especially the transition from simulation back to reality.  I also like Tony’s light-based armor, but the visuals are a bit more successful than the storytelling for me.  As much as I appreciate the big reveal here, it’s hard not to read it as a bait-and-switch.  It makes sense thematically, but it would be easy to see it as a “cheap” ending, and I expect to see such sentiments on the internet soon.


That said, Iron Man 2020 #6 is a good ending not only to this arc and to the big 2020 event, but to Slott’s run on the character, with a couple of truly impressive surprises and clear, expressive art, not to mention a tribute to one of my favorite 80s stories, earning an above-average 3.5 out of 5 stars overall.  The takeway from all of this seems to be that Tony Stark has more lives than a cartoon cat, and I’m totally here for the wrap-up and preparation for the new normal.

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IRON MAN 2020 #6

Happy Endings

All Around

All the toys get put back in the box as Slott and Gage wrap up a big multi-year plot with aplomb and a couple of big surprises... It's pretty good, if you're okay with $4.99.

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Once upon a time, there was a young nerd from the Midwest, who loved Matter-Eater Lad and the McKenzie Brothers... If pop culture were a maze, Matthew would be the Minotaur at its center. Were it a mall, he'd be the Food Court. Were it a parking lot, he’d be the distant Cart Corral where the weird kids gather to smoke, but that’s not important right now... Matthew enjoys body surfing (so long as the bodies are fresh), writing in the third person, and dark-eyed women. Amongst his weaponry are such diverse elements as: Fear! Surprise! Ruthless efficiency! An almost fanatical devotion to pop culture! And a nice red uniform.

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