By Jim Beard
50 Years ago, Tony Stark became Iron Man, a historic milestone in the tapestry of the Marvel Universe.
Flash forward half a century, and the Armored Avenger has become a worldwide sensation. Beyond his prominent role across the Marvel Comics line, Shellhead hit the big screen in 2008 as Robert Downey Jr. brought Tony Stark to life in the first “Iron Man” movie. The character’s popularity grew in 2010’s “Iron Man 2” and 2011’s “Marvel’s The
On May 3, 2013, Tony Stark returns to theaters everywhere in “Iron Man 3.” In anticipation of this momentous occasion and to celebrate Iron Man’s 50th anniversary, each week Marvel.com will be bringing you another chapter in the history of this complex and beloved character. Year by year, get an in-depth rundown of the trials, foes and experiences that have made Iron Man the hero he stands as today.
You can start here.
Back from the “dead,” in 1998 Tony Stark tried to put his past behind him and be the very best Iron Man he could be or die trying—again.
Rescued from a pocket dimension after a year in a strange reality, Tony returned to his familiar world in IRON MAN #1. His people concocted a story for the press that he’d been kidnapped by terrorists, but after an attack by the
Iron Man then rejoined Earth’s Mightiest Heroes in AVENGERS #1, just in time to be whisked off to a fantasy world created by
In IRON MAN #4, Tony unveiled Starkware, his new product, and then faced off against Firebrand his Flaming Sword team on far-off Isla Suerte. Trapped on the island and in the path of a volcano set up by Firebrand, Shellhead gained control of the mercenary’s armor and used it to funnel the lava flow away from innocents in IRON MAN #5. Meanwhile, the Black Widow sought out Stark for a trap of her own she planned to spring.
Many things converged in IRON MAN #6, as our hero and the Widow flew off to Australia to run afoul of not only the villain called Tuatara, but also the knowledge that everything seemed connected in the weapons manufacturing mystery. At this time, Iron Man also stood with the Avengers against the Squadron Supreme in AVENGERS #6.
Iron Man risked the wrath of
The villainous Whiplash made trouble for Tony in IRON MAN #8 as he tried to kill Stark to raise money to save his own child. After a severe beating and the theft of his briefcase by Spymaster and the Espionage
The Avengers joined forces with the Winter Guard in IRON MAN #10 to attack the Dragon of Heaven, while inside the craft, Stark learned of his old foe’s scheme for a New World
The year ended with bad dreams for Tony Stark in IRON MAN #11 and an un-clean bill of health from his new doctor,