So the team supreme is assembled: David Michelinie scripting, coplotting with inker Bob Layton, and John Romita, Jr., turning in the greatest pencil art of his career (except perhaps for his work on Spider-Man).

And what is the first thing they do?

They plant the seeds for the greatest  Iron Man story of all time: Demon in a Bottle.

What a time to be reading Iron Man!


Tony Stark’s life is beginning to fall apart—he’s being stalked by a hitman, who “kills” Stark’s Life Model Decoy on page one and then he gets evicted.  (Eviction was also a constant bugaboo for the Fantastic Four—why didn’t these characters invest in a little real estate, one wonders?)

But even misery loves a little company, so enter Bethany Cabe, Stark’s love interest for the foreseeable future…


Hmm.  Romita drawing a redhead who’s too cool for school.  Sounds familiar….

The villain, Spymaster, even gets teased by the editor.


In the background, Nick Fury and SHIELD are trying to get the U.S. Government to seize Iron Man’s armor as a weapon.

Nick can be such a dick.

Creators: Micheline/Layton/Romita Jr.
Grade: B

For the complete history of the MU, year by year, go here.
And see my Ratings of Runs on comics here.

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