Tuesday, January 20, 2015

The Hidden Avenger

Nowadays, we've become so desensitized to Iron Man suiting up in customized armor that he might as well be inducted as an honorary Transformer. But during the John Romita/Bob Layton run on Invincible Iron Man, seeing Iron Man in armor that was specially designed to tackle a specific task was a fun new concept for readers:

Tsk. A billionaire and his toys.

The "EVA" suit was a bit of a head-scratcher, since we'd already seen Iron Man operating in outer space in his normal armor; but among its other functions, the new suit's main design seemed to be geared toward getting him into space, which at the time was perhaps beyond the standard suit's capability:

Fortunately, the introductory story gave this development a touch of realism. For instance, despite having the design and engineering skills to conceive and build a suit of Iron Man armor that could function exceptionally well in outer space, Tony Stark never received astronaut training--and there were bound to be mishaps this first time out:

Then there was that interesting-looking stealth armor, with a very logical method of operation that guaranteed that this design wouldn't necessarily be incorporated into Iron Man's regular suit of armor. Specifically designed to take its wearer literally under the radar and cross international borders without detection, or to infiltrate an installation or stronghold with state-of-the-art security, the suit sacrificed its offensive capabilities to make room for (what else?) stealth technology:

And the fact that Stark would be almost defenseless in this armor should anything go wrong was almost asking for something to go wrong:

The stealth armor was damaged by a grid of deadly laser beams, so its introduction was short but sweet. Stark indeed went on to adapt the basic principle of this armor into his red/silver suit, in the form of its "chameleon" mode:

Phooey. It's Space Ghost no matter how you slice it.

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