Marvel’s New Female Iron Man Has a New Name

Earlier this summer, Marvel announced a big shakeup for the two Iron Man ongoing series written by Brian Michael Bendis. Former (?) villain Victor von Doom is taking over Iron Man’s identity in The Infamous Iron Man, while a sixteen year old girl named Riri Williams will take up the mantle in The Invincible Iron Man. Guess which one of these announcements was more controversial? 

Today, via Wired, Marvel revealed that Riri is still taking over Invincible Iron Man, but she won’t be using Stark’s heroic name. Instead, she’ll be called Ironheart, for reasons that will apparently become clear very soon. There are some fans who are likely to see this as Marvel backing away from their change, but it’s likely that this was the plan all along.

As Bendis explained to Wired, “Iron Woman seemed old fashioned to some. Iron Maiden looked like a legal nightmare. And Ironheart, coined by [Marvel CCO] Joe Quesada, after I told him my planned story for Riri, speaks not only to the soul of the character but to the Iron Man franchise as a whole. Tony first put on the armor to save his heart. Riri puts it on for different reasons altogether but still heart-related. When people see her story, you’ll be amazed at how simple and brilliant Joe’s suggestion was.”

Related: Now Doctor Doom Is Iron Man Too?!

All we know about Tony Stark’s post-Civil War II status is that he will be out of the picture for a while. In superhero comics, even death could be considered a vacation for some of these characters. But whether Tony lives or dies, he will appear in Invincible Iron Man…as the onboard artificial intelligence within Riri’s Ironheart suit. Essentially, he’ll be her J.A.R.V.I.S., which means that he’ll still get to mentor Riri…after a fashion. Marvel senior editor Tom Breevort said “Regardless of where he might be physically, he’ll be soaring along with her spiritually.”

Invincible Iron Man # 1 will be released in November.

How do you feel about Riri Williams as Ironheart? And what do you think will happen to Tony Stark? Share your theories in the comment section below!

Photo Credit: Marvel Comics