Welcome to a very special edition of Comics Misremembered Podcast. We are celebrating our 250th podcast!! About a week ago I had no idea what we were going to do to honor this milestone.
We started kicking around ideas: Maybe do a countdown of our favorite storylines. We ditched this idea because we figured it would be too similar to past podcasts. Then changed it up to: review a great and celebrated storyline that is often over looked.
This brings us to the topic of this week’s CM Podcast. We will be reviewing the trade paperback of Iron Man: Demon in a Bottle. This is a collection Iron Man Vol.1 #120 – 128. The original story was published by Marvel in 1979.
The creators of this storyline are: Writer/Co-Plotter – David Michelinie, Artist – John Romita, Jr and Inker/Co-Plotter Bob Layton.
The title Demon in a Bottle comes from Iron Man #128 which is the final part of the overall story arc. It also has one of the most recognizable covers of all time created by Bob Layton.
Jon and I have never read this story in it’s original run. We had a great time going over it and we both think it is as relevant today as it was in 1979. I think the reason it is often overlooked on people’s Top Ten lists is because this is only the beginning of Tony Stark’s descent into alcoholism. In this story arc: Bethany Cabe points out that he has a drinking problem, helps him identify the problem and overcome it. Tony seems to have conquered his demons. Or has he?
If you continue reading after #128, Tony’s struggle become worse and he will eventually lose everything to drinking. It will be several years before he turns it all around to become sober and a success again.
It’s a terrific story that shows that no man is an island. You sometimes have more problems than you can handle and it is always a good idea to have your friends and family help you out when times are tough.
We compare Tony Stark of the 70s to how he behaves in the 2020s, we cover the infamous Javis resignation letter and discuss how they tired to use elements of this story in the Iron Man 2 movie to varying degrees of success.
From the pages of the very entertaining Metal mini series, DC has decided to launch a grouping of 8 new superhero books. Some of them have characters you are familiar with and some are brand new. There are 4 books out right now:
Damage – Written by Robert Venditti with Art by Tony S. Daniel
The Silencer – Written by Dan Abnett with Art by John Romita Jr.
Sideways – Written by Dan Didio & Justin Jordan with Art by Kenneth Rocafort
The Terrifics – Written by Jeff Lemire with Art by Ivan Reis
Jon and I have read the first four titles and we opine on which books we like and which books need a little more work. We also point out that some of the new characters seem a little familiar (maybe more so than a rival comic company would like). Will this strategy of evoking a pastiche of established characters in their new comics work for DC? We think it will and we explain why.
It’s the summer time! The weather starts getting hotter and that makes you want to drive to the beach and strip down to your swimsuit and take a long, cool dip in the water.
This also reminded me that at one point in time (the early 90s), Marvel decided to put out an annual specialty magazine called The Marvel Illustrated Swimsuit Special (later to be changed to the Marvel Swimsuit Special for legal reasons).
Jon and I are not sure why or how Marvel came to the decision to put this special out for 5 years in a row (1991 – 1995) but it lead to some great artwork and laughs (intended or unintended).
Here are a few visual aids to help you through this podcast:
We talk about all the above artwork and more in the podcast and then we theorize what would happen if Marvel were to put out a Swimsuit Special in 2016.
Lots of fun and jokes in this one, folks. We hope you have a safe and happy Independence Day this weekend.