Iron Man volume 3 #71
Marvel Comics (October, 2003)
“Vegas Bleeds Neon” part 2
WRITER: Robin Laws
PENCILER: Robert Teranishi
INKERS: Eric Cannon & Robin Riggs
COLORIST: Tony Avina
LETTERER: Randy Gentile
ASSISTANT EDITORS: Marc Sumerak & Andy Schmidt
EDITOR: Tom Brevoort
Tony manages to stop his taken-over armor and learns the creature that controlled it was formed from a substance he calls “nanoplasm”. With that armor trashed he calls for an armor made from easily replaceable plates, originally designed as the prototype for a new space armor. Tony meets with Vicus and he finds something suspicious about his answers. Saige finds out Vicus owns land outside of Vegas that once belonged to Hughes. (The document that brought Tony here was Hughes trying to map the nanoplasm.) Iron Man heads there and finds the nanoplasm and the journalist that Saige was looking for, Mo Stanton. He tells him that Vicus is working with the alien, who wants to assimilate the planet, but one travels on Mo and infects the new armor.
What they got right: It may not be a supervillain but Iron Man has fought monsters before as well so it’s close. While the shapeshifting sentient protomass invader is nothing new in the Marvel Universe (for example the Phalanx) this is a different take on it. Conceptually I like this newest armor.
What they got wrong: On the other hand the thing’s ugly. I hope he plans to refine it before officially putting it into action but it’s a good idea for this particular threat.
Recommendation: The next issue is the end of this arc and thus far it seems good. If the final issue holds out it will be one to check out.