Anthony Edward "Tony" Stark
"Shellhead", "Golden Avenger", "Tetsujin"; formerly Crimson Dynamo, Iron Knight, Hogan Potts, "Spare Parts Man"; impersonated Cobalt Man (Ralph Roberts)
Place of Birth
Long Island, New York
Tales of Suspense #39 (1963)
Tales of Suspense #39 (1963)
6'1"; (in armor) 6'6"
225 lbs.; (in armor) 425 lbs.
Born to Howard Anthony Stark and Maria Collins Carbonell Stark, Anthony Edward "Tony" Stark was born with extremely high intelligence. At the age of 15 Stark entered the undergraduate electrical engineering program at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) where he graduated at the top of his class. At the age of 21 he inherited Stark Enterprises when his parents were killed in a car accident.
On his way home Tony met Helicopter pilot James Rhodes - the future armored partner of Tony Stark called War Machine - and returned to America. After he arrived, Tony worked to improve the Iron Man armor and made Iron Man Tony Stark's personal bodyguard to disguise his identity. In his early years Tony Stark became the corporate sponsor of the superhero group the Avengers and as Iron Man help found the group with Thor, Ant-Man, the Wasp, and the Hulk. Notable villains from these early days include Mandarin, Hawkeye, and the Black Widow.
Although Anthony Stark promotes a rich, playboy persona his life is far from perfect. His biggest personal problem is his lifelong battle with alcoholism. Other problems include repetitive losses of companies by takeover, bankruptcy, and many other business-related threats. His hardest fall left Tony homeless, after which he handed the Iron Man identity over to his friend Rhodes. But our hero Stark has always recovered. He soon started a new company, Circuits Maximus, and swiftly returned as Iron Man. When Stark International's new Chief Executive Officer, Obadiah Stane, tried to take over Stark's new company, Stark retaliated and took back his family's company.
All during this time Tony Stark's health was in rapid decline. Even after a heart transplant that saved his life, Tony still had health issues. His armor's cybernetic interface was causing his nervous system to deteriorate. It became serious enough that he had to fake his own death and enter suspended animation to survive. At this point Rhodes donned the Iron Man identity once more, but this time he equipped himself with a new armor created by Tony called the "Variable Threat Response Battle Suit", later known as the War Machine armor. When Tony awoke Rhodes was so enraged by the deception that he left Tony and made War Machine into its own identity.
Teenage Tony Stark continued to fight with the Avengers and managed to take back control of Stark International. Shortly after this, the mutant Onslaught appeared. The young Tony and many of the world's superheroes fought Onslaught in New York City's Central Park. There the young Iron Man, the Fantastic Four, Thor, the Hulk, and other heroes seemingly lost their lives defending the Earth. However, they were actually brought into a pocket universe created by Reed and Sue Richards' son, Franklin. Events soon forced Franklin to choose a world to survive, but instead he restored to life the original, older Anthony Stark, and the heroes to Earth.
Tony's armor eventually grew so sophisticated that it became sentient. At first Tony allowed the armor to do his job as Iron Man, but it became increasingly dangerous. It even committed murder, slaying the villain, Whiplash. When this occurred Tony had no choice but to face the armor. During the confrontation Tony went into cardiac arrest due to an injury he previously sustained battling Whiplash. Proving itself a hero, the armor ripped out its own components and created a cybernetic heart for it's creator, sacrificing itself in the process.
Tony later revealed to the world that he was Iron Man. After this revelation he took the post as the President's Secretary of Defense to monitor the use of his technology by the United States Military. He was subsequently forced to step down from the position when the Scarlet Witch went out of control and killed members of the Avengers, forcing them to disband. Tony publicly stated that he would no longer be Iron Man but that there would always be one. Though of course Tony continued to be Iron Man while maintaining a secret identity. More recently, Tony injected himself with a Nanotech virus that integrated many of his suits functions with his own biological systems. He has also been a member of a secret group known as the Illuminati, along with Professor Charles Xavier, Reed Richards, Blackagar Boltagon, Dr. Stephen Strange, and Namor for many years.