Comic Book Talk The Place to talk about Comics

Marvel is at it again, the new Iron Man is...

Old 07-06-16, 04:01 PM
  #1  
DVD Talk Legend
Thread Starter
 
Obi-Wan Jabroni's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: Detroit
Posts: 10,688
Marvel is at it again, the new Iron Man is...

A Black Teenage Girl



http://time.com/4394478/iron-man-rir.../?xid=homepage



Exclusive: Marvel’s New Iron Man Is a Black Woman


Eliana Dockterman @edockterman
9:16 AM ET
    
Marvel writer Brian Michael Bendis talks the creation of Riri Williams, who will take over for Tony Stark

There’s a new Iron Man. Well, Iron Man for now. She’s still working on the name. The events at the end of the comic book event series Civil War II will result in Tony Stark stepping out of the Iron Man suit and a new character, Riri Williams, taking over, Marvel tells TIME. (Note: Tony’s departure doesn’t mean you know the end to Civil War II yet.)

Riri is a science genius who enrolls in MIT at the age of 15. She comes to the attention of Tony when she builds her own Iron Man suit in her dorm. Creator and Iron Man writer Brian Michael Bendis spoke exclusively to TIME about the creation of Riri Williams with book artist Stefano Caselli and Marvel’s increasingly diverse cast of characters.

TIME: How did you come up with the character of Riri Williams?

Bendis: One of the things that stuck with me when I was working in Chicago a couple of years ago on a TV show that didn’t end up airing was the amount of chaos and violence. And this story of this brilliant, young woman whose life was marred by tragedy that could have easily ended her life—just random street violence—and went off to college was very inspiring to me. I thought that was the most modern version of a superhero or superheroine story I had ever heard. And I sat with it for awhile until I had the right character and the right place.

As we’ve been slowly and hopefully very organically adding all these new characters to the Marvel Universe, it just seemed that sort of violence inspiring a young hero to rise up and act, and using her science acumen, her natural born abilities that are still raw but so ahead of where even Tony Stark was at that age, was very exciting to me.

What have we seen of her so far in the Iron Man comics?

In the latest issue of Iron Man, Tony is in a lab talking to himself, and he’s already aware that there’s some student at M.I.T. that’s reverse-engineered one of his old armors all by herself in her dorm room. He’s aware of her immediately.

What’s been the reception of the character so far (before this announcement)?

Thankfully because of my involvement in the creation of Miles Morales and Jessica Jones and some other characters, it’s getting the benefit of the doubt from even the most surly fans. There are fans who say, “Show us the new stuff,” and then there are fans who say, “Don’t do anything different from when I was a kid.” So when you’re introducing new characters, you’re always going to have people getting paranoid about us ruining their childhood.

I’ve been down this road with Miles Morales, Jessica Jones, Maria Hill. I knew I was in good hands with Mike Deodato and other artists who are helping visualize Riri.

Marvel Comics’ diverse new cast has stirred some controversy among a subset of fans.

Some of the comments online, I don’t think people even realize how racist they sound. I’m not saying if you criticize you’re a racist, but if someone writes, “Why do we need Riri Williams we already have Miles?” that’s a weird thing to say. They’re individuals just like Captain America and Cyclops are individuals. All I can do is state my case for the character, and maybe they’ll realize over time that that’s not the most progressive thinking.

But increasingly we see less and less of that. Once Miles hit, and Kamala Khan hit and female Thor hit—there was a part of an audience crawling through the desert looking for an oasis when it came to representation, and now that it’s here, you’ll go online and be greeted with this wave of love.

I think what’s most important is that the character is created in an organic setting. We never had a meeting saying, “we need to create this character.” It’s inspired by the world around me and not seeing that represented enough in popular culture.

Why did it take so long to turn the Avengers from a team of mostly white dudes into a more diverse array of characters?

Talking to any of the older creators, it’s the thing they said they wish they’d done more of—reflecting the world around them. It just wasn’t where the world was at at that time. Now, when you have a young woman come up to you at a signing and say how happy she is to be represented in his universe, you know you’re moving in the right direction.

I don’t want to spoil anything for fans—

More people are going to be upset that they think they know the ending to Civil War II now than anything we just talked about. But I can tell you just because we’re hearing what we’re saying doesn’t know you mean how Civil War II ends. We’re not telling you the end, at all.

What led Tony Stark to a place where he’s stepping out of the suit?

We’re in the middle of a very big Tony Stark storyline—actually three storylines converging. His best friend died, his company is collapsing and he’s finding out who his biological parents were all at the same time. That’s stressful for a character who is wired the way Tony is wired and has dependency issues the way Tony does.

Tony is also a master at not paying attention to the thing that’s most important and distracting himself with Avengers stuff. How that all shakes out such that Tony is no longer in the armor? You’ll have to wait to find out for the end of Civil War II. But it does create a path or Riri Williams, who Tony will know and will be interacting with very shortly in the comics.

How do they meet?

One of the things Tony does to distract himself from all the things going on in his life is he goes to find this young woman who is flying around the middle of America in an armor that’s not completely made to try to find out what her deal is.

It’s hard to subtly fly around in Iron Man armor.

You imagine that Tony has Iron Man armor on his Google Alerts.

He’s also aware that this young woman is flying by him in terms of how quickly she’s doing it. Her brain is maybe a little better than his. She looks at things from a different perspective that makes the armor unique. He can’t help but go maybe I should buy her out.
Is THIS the plan for when RDJ steps down?
Obi-Wan Jabroni is offline  
Old 07-06-16, 06:40 PM
  #2  
DVD Talk Platinum Edition
 
Greg MacGuffin's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2004
Location: Formerly known as "Jeffy Pop"/Denver
Posts: 3,033
Re: Marvel is at it again, the new Iron Man is...

Doesn't bother me at all. My first issues of Iron Man were in the 80s when Jim Rhodes was wearing the armor. When Tony Stark resumed the role, I was like, who's this corny white dude?
Greg MacGuffin is offline  
Old 07-06-16, 06:44 PM
  #3  
DVD Talk Legend
Thread Starter
 
Obi-Wan Jabroni's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: Detroit
Posts: 10,688
Re: Marvel is at it again, the new Iron Man is...

Doesn't bother me either. Obviously Tony will be back, I just think it's funny how often Marvel is doing these kinds of stunts.
Obi-Wan Jabroni is offline  
Old 07-06-16, 10:13 PM
  #4  
DVD Talk Limited Edition
 
Red Hood's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2015
Posts: 5,322
Re: Marvel is at it again, the new Iron Man is...

I don't mind this at all either. All these changes Marvel has made on the characters over the past 5 years have actually worked and brought in a new generation of readers, including, many female and young teens. I'm all for bringing this crowd to comic book stores instead of the old school disgruntled, always complaining group that has brought down the industry in the past.
Red Hood is offline  
Old 07-06-16, 11:40 PM
  #5  
DVD Talk Platinum Edition
 
Tom Banjo's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2001
Location: Auburn, AL
Posts: 3,594
Re: Marvel is at it again, the new Iron Man is...

My only problem is picturing her trying to fit that afro into the helmet.
Tom Banjo is offline  
Old 07-06-16, 11:49 PM
  #6  
DVD Talk Platinum Edition
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Houston, TX
Posts: 3,573
Re: Marvel is at it again, the new Iron Man is...

I appreciate the diversity and agree it's a step in the right direction; what is awkward to trying to redesign existing characters to now be a different gender and/or ethnicity. Characters like War Machine, Winter Soldier, or X23 add a lot to the mythos without negating existing characters, and likely this will ultimately be similar but it seems little too direct to suggest the new character will be a flagship title main character "taking over" as they are introduced. It is lame for Avengers to be a team of "white dudes" but feels even more lame for Avengers to be the same character archetypes only now implausibly female or of a different ethnicity. I like new stories and characters... but prefer they actually be new and not Iron Man version #7 to pair with Hulk #5 and Thor #3.

I remeber an interview with Bendis about House of M being necessary to neuter 'mutants' because accidents of birth was too lazy/vague of an origin... but now it feels like we need population control in SpiderVerse, or with Thors, Captain Americas, etc so creator do more than just redesign the vanilla heroes with new gender or skin color every few years.
Undeadcow is offline  
Old 07-07-16, 12:48 AM
  #7  
DVD Talk Legend
 
PhantomStranger's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: The Phantom Zone
Posts: 21,879
Re: Marvel is at it again, the new Iron Man is...

All I see is another publicity stunt for a creatively bankrupt company.
PhantomStranger is offline  
Old 07-07-16, 05:10 AM
  #8  
DVD Talk Legend
 
Join Date: Dec 1999
Location: Hail to the Redskins!
Posts: 24,756
Re: Marvel is at it again, the new Iron Man is...

Hail Hydra?
DVD Josh is offline  
Old 07-07-16, 11:07 AM
  #9  
DVD Talk Gold Edition
 
Join Date: Jun 2013
Posts: 2,476
Re: Marvel is at it again, the new Iron Man is...

Seems like Marvel is becoming desperate to get new readers. I wonder how long till they make Cap transgender.
robin2099 is offline  
Old 07-07-16, 11:46 AM
  #10  
DVD Talk Hero
 
slop101's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2001
Location: So. Cal.
Posts: 39,894
Re: Marvel is at it again, the new Iron Man is...

Originally Posted by Greg MacGuffin View Post
Doesn't bother me at all. My first issues of Iron Man were in the 80s when Jim Rhodes was wearing the armor. When Tony Stark resumed the role, I was like, who's this corny white dude?
Me too!

As far as this instance, if it's a good, organic story, who fucking cares?
slop101 is offline  
Old 07-07-16, 11:59 AM
  #11  
DVD Talk Hero
 
Join Date: Aug 1999
Posts: 27,512
Re: Marvel is at it again, the new Iron Man is...

Maybe it's the publicity they try to generate around it. Unless they're paying for the coverage, sooner or later the media's going to get savvy and realize these are mostly temporary changes.
fujishig is offline  
Old 07-07-16, 01:05 PM
  #12  
DVD Talk Legend
 
PhantomStranger's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: The Phantom Zone
Posts: 21,879
Re: Marvel is at it again, the new Iron Man is...

Originally Posted by fujishig View Post
Maybe it's the publicity they try to generate around it. Unless they're paying for the coverage, sooner or later the media's going to get savvy and realize these are mostly temporary changes.
If you noticed, the only media outlets picking these Marvel stunts up anymore are owned by Disney. I'm sure Good Morning America will have an upcoming segment on the news. Corporate synergy in action.
PhantomStranger is offline  
Old 07-07-16, 01:13 PM
  #13  
DVD Talk Legend
Thread Starter
 
Obi-Wan Jabroni's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: Detroit
Posts: 10,688
Re: Marvel is at it again, the new Iron Man is...

Originally Posted by PhantomStranger View Post
If you noticed, the only media outlets picking these Marvel stunts up anymore are owned by Disney. I'm sure Good Morning America will have an upcoming segment on the news. Corporate synergy in action.
The original article quoted above that broke the news is Time magazine (of Time Warner, owners or Marvel's main competition)
Obi-Wan Jabroni is offline  
Old 07-07-16, 05:18 PM
  #14  
DVD Talk Legend
 
Mike86's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Posts: 18,458
Re: Marvel is at it again, the new Iron Man is...

I guess whatever. Its really no different than Norman Osborn taking over Peter Parker's body and becoming Spider-Man or Cap being an agent of Hydra. Marvel does seem to do this type of thing pretty often though and the effect does kind of wear off after a while.
Mike86 is offline  
Old 07-07-16, 06:06 PM
  #15  
DVD Talk Hero
 
Join Date: Aug 1999
Posts: 27,512
Re: Marvel is at it again, the new Iron Man is...

Wait, they repeated Superior Spidey with Norman Osborn?
fujishig is offline  
Old 07-07-16, 09:04 PM
  #16  
DVD Talk Gold Edition
 
Rex Power Colt-Robot Man's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Posts: 2,033
Re: Marvel is at it again, the new Iron Man is...

Doc Ock
Rex Power Colt-Robot Man is offline  
Old 07-07-16, 09:08 PM
  #17  
DVD Talk Legend
 
Nick Danger's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2001
Location: Albuquerque
Posts: 22,356
Re: Marvel is at it again, the new Iron Man is...

Originally Posted by Tom Banjo View Post
My only problem is picturing her trying to fit that afro into the helmet.
It's like those TV shows where a newly introduced character rides up on a motorcycle wearing a helmet that covers her face. She removes her helmet, shakes her head once, and has a $500 hairdo.
Nick Danger is offline  
Old 07-07-16, 10:09 PM
  #18  
DVD Talk Legend
 
Mike86's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Posts: 18,458
Re: Marvel is at it again, the new Iron Man is...

Originally Posted by fujishig View Post
Wait, they repeated Superior Spidey with Norman Osborn?
Oh I fucked up. I meant Doc Ock not sure why I was thinking Osborn. Either way Superior Spider-Man is actually decent.
Mike86 is offline  
Old 07-07-16, 10:53 PM
  #19  
DVD Talk Legend
 
PhantomStranger's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: The Phantom Zone
Posts: 21,879
Re: Marvel is at it again, the new Iron Man is...

Originally Posted by Obi-Wan Jabroni View Post
The original article quoted above that broke the news is Time magazine (of Time Warner, owners or Marvel's main competition)
I was referring to television coverage. No one outside the fan bases cares about print coverage of superhero comics.
PhantomStranger is offline  
Old 07-08-16, 01:10 AM
  #20  
DVD Talk Special Edition
 
Join Date: Nov 2003
Posts: 1,597
Re: Marvel is at it again, the new Iron Man is...

Originally Posted by robin2099 View Post
Seems like Marvel is becoming desperate to get new readers.
Wouldn't you be? Catering to the old white dude demographic has a built-in shelflife. And the expiration date is gonna come up sooner rather than later, because we're not exactly known for making the best choices regarding diet and exercise.
Preterite is offline  
Old 07-10-16, 09:54 AM
  #21  
DVD Talk Ultimate Edition
 
sven's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2000
Location: Central Illinois
Posts: 4,007
Re: Marvel is at it again, the new Iron Man is...

I was already losing interest in Invincible Ironman. This doesn't do much to change that situation. Bendis is the problem though not RiRi.
sven is offline  
Old 07-10-16, 10:28 AM
  #22  
DVD Talk Platinum Edition
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Houston, TX
Posts: 3,573
Re: Marvel is at it again, the new Iron Man is...

Originally Posted by sven View Post
...Bendis is the problem though not RiRi.
Bendis sure made a mess of the X-men.
Undeadcow is offline  
Old 07-10-16, 05:02 PM
  #23  
DVD Talk Gold Edition
 
Join Date: Jun 2013
Posts: 2,476
Re: Marvel is at it again, the new Iron Man is...

Originally Posted by Preterite View Post
Wouldn't you be? Catering to the old white dude demographic has a built-in shelflife. And the expiration date is gonna come up sooner rather than later, because we're not exactly known for making the best choices regarding diet and exercise.
No. But I still fail to see how Marvel's stunt of the month equates to new readership.
robin2099 is offline  
Old 07-10-16, 05:16 PM
  #24  
DVD Talk Ultimate Edition
 
sven's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2000
Location: Central Illinois
Posts: 4,007
Re: Marvel is at it again, the new Iron Man is...

Originally Posted by robin2099 View Post
No. But I still fail to see how Marvel's stunt of the month equates to new readership.
I don't think it really does. They just know their fans can't resist #1's.
sven is offline  
Old 07-11-16, 03:59 PM
  #25  
DVD Talk Hall of Fame
 
Navinabob's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2008
Location: Bay Area, California
Posts: 8,941
Re: Marvel is at it again, the new Iron Man is...

Well, it appears that Doctor Doom will also be Iron Man this year. Odd.
Navinabob is offline  

Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Archive Advertising Cookie Policy Privacy Statement Terms of Service

Copyright © 2018 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use.