And this series is finally done with the Fear Itself tie-ins! Huzzah!!! Hopefully we get back to the good Iron Man action that we were getting prior to the Fear stuff. We'll see, I guess...
Invincible Iron Man #510:
Summary: Ezekiel Stane, on the order of the Mandarin, sends Blizzard to destroy desalination plants in the Abu Dhabi, thus robbing the citizens of Abu Dhabi of water. Meanwhile, Tony Stark tosses all of the Odin enchanted weapons(except for Red She-Hulk's sword) into a cauldron in Svartalfheim, destroying them all. From there Tony takes his little dwarf friend Splitlip back to Earth and goes to an AA meeting with Splitlip, who wanted to stop drinking... Yes, this really happened. While at the meeting, Tony gets word that agents of AIM were stealing some tech and were firing at the police, so he heads off to assist. Tony manages to stop the AIM agents and their van full of goodies, but takes a spill during the battle, which is actually important to the story, believe it or not. The cops go to arrest the AIM agents, but they, at Stane's command, explode, leaving Tony shocked and confused. A bit later, Tony returns to the AA meeting to pick up his dwarf, and while driving home, Tony spots a gorgeous woman standing by her disabled car. Being a good samaritan(and notorious man-whore), Tony heads out to help the woman, who hands him a subpoena... HA! Apparently, somebody knew Tony had taken a few drinks while working with the dwarfs, and wanted the biometric readings from his suit from the past thirty days. With that, we head back to the Mandarin and Stane, who are patting each other on the back over how well their plans have been moving along. The Mandarin reveals that he was declaring war not just on Tony, but on the United States, and proudly shows a newspaper headline from the Daily Bugle, depicting Tony crashing into the ground during the prior night's battle with the AIM agents with a headline that simply stated, “Drunk!”
Thoughts: Ah the good old Daily Bugle and their headlines... You'd think they'd have gotten more classy after JJJ became mayor, but I guess not. This comic was a great set-up issue. It moved briskly, and the story is pretty simple... The Mandarin is out to ruin Tony(again) and along with another one of Tony's enemies(Stane) is willing to go further than ever before. Personally, I'm delighted to see the Mandarin here, as he's probably the most well rounded villain in Iron Man's rogue gallery. Sure, I could do without the dwarf, since it adds NOTHING to the series, but what can ya do? For the most part this was a really good issue, one that has me interested in this storyline, dwarf or not.
Score: 8 out of 10.That's right, Tony, you got served!!