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Iron Man: Viva Las Vegas #1: Review

Jul 2008
Jon Favreau, Adi Granov

Story Name:

Viva Las Vegas [Part One]

Review & Comments

3 stars

Iron Man: Viva Las Vegas #1 Review by (September 24, 2022)
Comments: “Marvel Knights.”—Cover. Title comes from a popular song by Elvis Presley. Story takes place in Earth-80734.

Review: Odd little item: Written by Jon Favreau, director of the first IRON MAN movie and illustrated by Adi Granov, this thing is a disappointment. The story isn’t very interesting though a first issue generally just sets everything up, herein featuring Elsa Bloodstone, an infrequently used character outside of AGENTS OF NEXTWAVE; the vignette aboard the plane where Iron Man’s heroics meet a negative reaction was offbeat but a bit underwritten. I think more could have been said on the European versus American worldviews. And while we’re supposed to side with Tony, it’s hard to deny that he really didn’t need to kill the hijacker; usually he isn’t so bloodthirsty. But it’s Granov’s painted art that does this comic in: he is great for covers, showing heroes posing for posterity, especially Iron Man as his style suits all-metal characters. He falls a bit short when portraying living, breathing human beings. Everything is static, he has a lot of trouble conveying movement which is a debit for a superhero story.

The big question is, where is this set? With Favreau’s involvement, one would naturally expect it to be placed in the MCU—but it isn’t. The giveaway is that no one knows he is Iron Man. Shellhead is referred to as Stark’s “bodyguard,” one who never seems to be around Tony but flies in after disaster strikes. This is a throwback to the early days of the hero, 1960-70s, unmatched in the MCU. Plus, there’s no romantic relationship with Pepper either; she an employee—a valued one but still an employee. But it’s not Earth-616 either, as Tony Stark drinks and chases women like a horndog. In issue #2, Iron Man mentions having met Fin Fang Foom before, which did not happen in the MCU either. So Marvel, recognizing the differences between this, the MCU, and 616, chose to give it its own numbered universe.


Synopsis / Summary / Plot

Iron Man: Viva Las Vegas #1 Synopsis by T Vernon
Elsa Bloodstone is guided to a temple in China; inside she sees a massive bronze dragon and immediately buys it for her mysterious client….

Tony Stark is in a plane over the Mediterranean and chatting up an attractive woman next to him when a man with a bomb seizes control of the plane. Tony takes his briefcase into the restroom and emerges as Iron Man. Seizing the bad guy, he crashes through the plane roof out into the sky where he detonates the villain’s bomb, killing him but leaving the armored hero intact. He returns to the plane to find the largely European passengers condemning him for killing the guy who seemed willing to negotiate. Fed up, Iron Man flies off to his destination independently….

Some time later, Tony Stark is in Las Vegas for the dedication of the Golden Dragon casino, the symbol of which is the dragon statue purchased by Elsa Bloodstone in the prologue; he picks up a pair of tattooed cuties by the pool and takes them to his room for hanky-panky. Then he is interrupted by Pepper Potts, alerting him to a disaster: the city has been overrun by swarms of lizards, shutting down all transportation. Meanwhile, the golden dragon statue’s eyes begin to glow….

Adi Granov
Adi Granov
Adi Granov
Adi Granov (Cover Penciler)
Adi Granov (Cover Inker)
Adi Granov (Cover Colorist)
Letterer: Chris Eliopoulos.
Editor: Tom Brevoort. Editor-in-chief: Joe Quesada.


Listed in Alphabetical Order.

Iron Man
Iron Man

(Tony Stark)
Pepper Potts
Pepper Potts

(Pepper Hogan)

Plus: Elsa Bloodstone.

> Iron Man: Viva Las Vegas: Book info and issue index

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