Iron Man #196
Marvel (July, 1985)WRITER: Denny O’Neil PENCILER: Rich Buckler INKERS: Ian Akin & Brian Garvey COLORIST: Bob Sharen LETTERER: Rick Parker EDITOR: Mark Gruenwald
In the dimension Rhodey left the Iron Man armor, a being of some kind checks it out and decides he should return it to its owner, which is good because Shaman can’t send Rhodey back to replace it. However, the “Omnos” nearly kills passengers in a hot air balloon, which Stane uses to trash old Shellhead. Meanwhile, Doctor Demonicus (guess he didn’t just fight Japanese-based characters) gains possession of Tony’s old armor, which he uses to attack Omnos, believing it to be Iron Man. Using a few spare parts and a borrowed costume, Tony is able to stop both armors, taking in Demonicus while Omnos leaves, finally returning the armor to its rightful owner, Rhodey.
What they got right: I don’t know if I’m reading too much into it, but I like that Rhodey keeps referring to the armor as Tony’s but Omnos believes Rhodey to be the rightful owner. It even says “you’re welcome” to Rhodey. We also see that Hawkeye is right that the hero business is still in Tony’s blood, but with everything that’s happened he’s not quite ready to resume the mantle.
What they got wrong: I know Tony’s “Spare Parts Man” costume is supposed to look thrown together and kind of silly as a result, but it’s still a bad costume.
Recommendation: Not a must-have story unless you want to see how Rhodey got his armor back after the last issue, but still a good one worth checking out.