There’s a new Iron Man in town — and she’s not a man, not yet a woman. Marvel announced Wednesday that the comic-book version of Tony Stark will be shedding the Iron Man suit and Riri Williams, a 15-year-old black girl, will be stepping into his big, metal shoes.
Following the events of the Civil War II comics, Tony Stark gave up the Iron Man suit, allowing science genius Riri Williams — who reverse-engineered her own Iron Man suit out of her MIT dorm room — to don it instead.
Williams was created by Marvel writer Brian Michael Bendis, who has worked on expanding Marvel’s cast of minority characters with Miles Morales, Jessica Jones and Maria Hill, as part of the relaunch of Invincible Iron Man, a flagship series in the more diverse Marvel NOW! era. Riri’s character design was drawn by book artist Stefano Caselli.
Riri made her first appearance in Invincible Iron Man #7 by Mike Deodato.
‘Invincible Iron Man #7’ by Mike Deodato
‘Invincible Iron Man #7’ by Mike Deodato (Photo: Marvel, Mike Deodato)
In an interview with Time, Bendis said that Riri’s ascension to Iron Man successor resulted from her taking charge of her life through her scientific skills after her life was tragically marred by random street violence.
“I thought that was the most modern version of a superhero or superheroine story I had ever heard,” Bendis said. “…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.”
The Civil War II comics, which haven’t wrapped up yet, will show the fate of Tony Stark, and why he decides to give up his Iron Man mantle.
Bendis hinted that Tony is aware of Riri and that their paths may cross, either in the Civil War series or when Riri makes her official debut in Invincible Iron Man #1 in the fall. Source: by Hoai-Tran Bui, USA Today, Comics: Marvel’s new Iron Man is a black female teen