The 6th of July 2016 marked a big announcement for the new Marvel NOW! universe. Tony Stark will no longer be wearing the Iron Man armour (dun dun dun!). Instead, Riri Williams, a 15 year-old woman, will be rising to the title of Iron Man.
Riri Williams was first introduced in Invincible Iron Man #7 of the current run. She is an MIT student who managed to create her own, functioning Iron Man armour so she is a perfect choice to rise to the occasion. Not only that (impressive in itself), but she takes centre stage in another of the Marvel NOW! teasers, showing her at the front of one half of the split Marvel ensemble.
This announcement has sparked some mixed reactions. Personally, I think it is a bold and positive step for Marvel to have made. Replacing a long-standing character often has some negative repercussions (cough cough Ghostbusters cough cough) with older fans. However, the likes of Tony Stark and Bruce Banner can only be rejuvenated so many times before it becomes old hat. They need to move on and in their place new heroes must rise. If that means including more diversity, which has been achieved in this instance, then even better.
With a creative team including Bendis and Deodato I’m almost certain, like with Waid and the Champions, that this series will be given the justice it deserves as Bendis is a pretty brilliant writer (I think so anyway).
My only objection is her hair. How does she manage to fit her glorious afro into an Iron Man helmet and not have her vision impaired! Though I will probably not collect this title, though I am rather easily swayed at times so who knows, I’m glad Marvel have taken such a bold step and introduced yet more diversity into their universe.
This teaser equally sparks some questions over the aftermath of Civil War II. Some fans are very angry in the way it suggests that Iron Man is on the losing side of this Civil War. To be fair, this teaser is just a cover. It doesn’t give a solid statement that Iron Man loses. He could have simply stepped down after winning because he couldn’t take the mantle on anymore. He could very well lose Civil War II but again we can only wait and see as the story unravels.
If you have any thoughts or questions please leave them in the comments and I will happily provide an answer. Keep your eyes peeled for more Marvel NOW! teaser breakdowns in the next few weeks.