Tony Stark has never been a man of faith. After a rough and tumble discussion with Odin, will witnessing a miracle change his mind!
Fear Itself #7.3
The Grey Gargoyle, as a member of the Serpent’s “Chosen”, laid waste to Paris. His powers to turn everything to stone killed an entire city. Now, a prisoner of science, the Grey Gargoyle will never answer to his crimes – even if he truly doesn’t fully remember what did. Tony Stark takes an opportunity to speak to the prisoner and struggles over the decision to allow him to continue to live. We flash back to the cleanup effort in Paris. Tony’s sitting on top of a building over the quiet cityscape of Paris. Odin comes to collect him for Thor’s funeral pyre. They get into a battle when Stark’s anger over the events of the war against the Serpent reveals his feelings on why Odin didn’t stop what happened. To teach Tony a lesson, Odin gives him a tiny glimpse at the scale of godhood knowing that Tony would never be believed if he tried to explain it to anyone else. Finally, Odin gives the world one last miracle before leaving this plane of existence – he reverts everyone in Paris back to flesh and blood.
This might sound a little corny, but, man, this book was really pretty powerful. I love Fraction’s handling of Tony’s entirely scientific look at the world. Now, to introduce the idea that Tony must recognize the more mystical side of religion, Tony’s changed from the events of Fear Itself. It was one thing to go through the disbelief that these beings created by the Serpent were biblical in idea, but then to witness the horror of Paris, and now to understand the scope of what it means to be a god is something that will likely either fuel Stark’s mind or drive him insane. I’d really like to see this play some small part in future Iron Man stories. I don’t want necessarily want him to teeter between insanity and peacefulness all the time, but I’d like to see him take what he’s learn and grow. Fraction is certainly positioning Tony to become even more than simply a genius in Iron Man armor.
Of course, it wouldn’t be an Iron Man story without Salvador Larroca along for the ride. I couldn’t help but linger on several of the panels to study the subtlety placed into each character and each situation. Watching Grey Gargoyle struggle against the super dense fluid he’s imprisoned in to pray and beg for his life was nothing short of brilliant. Capturing the population of Paris as stone figures was disturbingly beautiful. This is going to make me come off as some sort of insane nutcase, but in both this issue and the Invincible Iron Man arc, Larroca perfectly captured fear as an emotion. It wasn’t just that he captured people emoting fear. I looked at his panels and didn’t see people… I saw the raw emotion of fear. Some people were fearful for what was going on around them and some were feeling the despair of knowing they were going to die. This is exactly why he’s my favorite artist at Marvel.
This was the perfect wrap up for the Fear Itself story. It’s quiet, but carries a lot of power with it and really gives a fantastic wrap up to Tony’s side of this story as a whole.
A COMIC BOOK BLOG RATING
|Strong characterization, absolutely gorgeous art. Great conclusion to the whole event.||Some may find the quietness of this issue a bit of an issue, but not me.|