What If? Fallen Son #1: Review

Dec 2008
Marc Sumerak, Trevor Goring

Story Name:

What if Iron Man had died instead of Captain America?

Review & Comments

3 stars

What If? Fallen Son #1 Review by (February 11, 2022)
This comic features Part 2 of a special five part back-up story, 'What if the Runaways Became the Young Avengers?' where Iron Lad stands revealed.

T Vernon's comments and review:-

Comments: First story: Follows Elisabeth Kubler-Ross’ five stages of grief, as did the canonical FALLEN SON. Tony Stark does not wear the Iron Man armor in the brief bit of time he is in the story. For non-Cap fans out there, Aleksander Lukin is secretly the Red Skull at this time. Cameos include Cloud 9, Ares, Wonder Man, Sentry, Black Widow, Wasp, Wolverine, Iron Fist, Yellowjacket, Thing, Second story: Part 2 of 5.

Review: Typically grim What If? concentrates on the death of a hero, though Tony’s Stark’s right to use that term was debatable during the Civil War. Yeah, things would have been different but not that much different: Secret Invasion is still up next though World War Hulk seems to be missing. And we likely wouldn’t have gotten Bucky Barnes as Captain America, so Ed Brubaker would probably have quit and created more issues of CRIMINAL. And no rebirth like Steve Cap had after he was done being dead. Or maybe we would. Say, they could go back in time and recruit a younger version of Tony Stark! Can’t see any problem with that! [Joke: that’s how they ended Iron Man volume one and it was ignored as soon as the creative team changed.] So: Decent writing, muddy looking art with unattractive and oddly glowing colors. Not one of the best of this occasional series.


Synopsis / Summary / Plot

What If? Fallen Son #1 Synopsis by T Vernon
The Civil War ends when Captain America surrenders; he is put on trial and sentenced to 36 months in SHIELD custody. SHIELD Director Tony Stark makes the announcement to the media on the courthouse steps. As he heads for his car, he is approached by Tom Foster, whose uncle, Bill “Goliath” Foster was killed during the Civil War; Tom bitterly accuses Tony of getting away with murder, grows to giant-size and crushes Tony under his fist. Stark dies, Foster is arrested, and the world is shaken….

Denial: At the training ground for the Fifty State Initiative, War Machine is giving trainer Gauntlet a hard time over being too easy on the trainees. Henry Peter Gyrich arrives and announces he is in charge, now that Stark is dead. Rhodey threatens him and goes back to what he was doing….

Anger: Luke Cage and Spider-Man are hanging around the Sanctum Sanctorum talking over Tony’s death. The Mighty Avengers, led by Ms. Marvel, crash through the wall to arrest Luke and Spidey; Wolverine and Iron Fist join in as New Avengers. Luke and Carol duke it out while debating the wisdom of the Registration Act but when Luke wishes he had killed Stark first, Carol loses it and blasts him. The subdued rebels are taken away….

Bargaining: The board of Stark Enterprises is in turmoil over dropping stock prices. Aleksander Lukin enters and announces he owns 51% of the company and demands all the others sell out to him….

Depression: As the world wonders, Pepper Potts sits in her shower and cries….

Acceptance: Captain America reads a letter left for him by Tony Stark, telling him he is the only one he trusts to keep everything going after Tony is gone. Cap is released from prison to attend Tony’s funeral as his friends all gather to remember him….

Epilogue: As Tony’s coffin is shot into space, the Skrull invasion fleet heads toward Earth….

Characters: Iron Man, Captain America, War Machine, Gauntlet, Henry Peter Gyrich, Luke Cage, Spider-Man, Ms. Marvel (CD), Aleksander Lukin, Pepper Potts, Skrulls

2nd story: part 2 of 5 of What If The Runaways Become The Young Avengers

Writer: C.B. Cebulski. Pencils: Patrick Spaziante. Inks: Victor Olazaba. Colors: John Rauch. Letters: Jeff Powell.

Continued from WHAT IF? HOUSE OF M #1.

Victorious chews out his younger self Ferro Lad for failing to kill the Runaways. He also abuses their prisoner, a young Kang. But Arsenic is on to them and she sics her dragon on the bad guy. But Victorious takes down the dragon and hurls a sharp screwdriver at her; Takeback walks in, sees the situation and throws himself in front of Gert, taking the screwdriver in the chest and he falls, seriously wounded….


Trevor Goring
Trevor Goring
Elizabeth Breitweiser
Ed McGuinness (Cover Penciler)
Ed McGuinness (Cover Inker)
? (Cover Colorist)
Letterer: Dave Sharpe.
Editor: Mark Paniccia. Editor-in-chief: Joe Quesada.


Listed in Alphabetical Order.

Captain America
Captain America

(Steve Rogers)
Iron Man
Iron Man

(Tony Stark)
Luke Cage
Luke Cage

(Power Man)
Ms. Marvel
Ms. Marvel

(Carol Danvers)
Pepper Potts
Pepper Potts

(Pepper Hogan)

(Peter Parker)
War Machine
War Machine

(James Rhodes)

Plus: Aleksander Lukin, Gauntlet.

> What If? Fallen Son: Book info and issue index

Share This Page