Bob Ingersoll: The Law Is A Ass #400
IRON MAN FAILS AT BEING CIVIL
Well, I can’t put it off any longer no matter how hard I try. And believe me, I’ve tried. Since June of last year I’ve tried. But starting this series of columns – finally starting it – was one of my New Year’s resolutions and I’m writing this on Valentine’s Day. But there’s no putting it off any longer. I’ve got to write about…
Civil War II started in Civil War II #0, but we’re not talking about that issue. The zero issue was all prologue and introduction. I’ve seen fewer setups in a Volleyball match. Civil War II # 1’s where the action is.
Starting with the revelation that there’s a new Inhuman in town. One named Ulysses whose Inhuman ability is to make predictions about the future. Dire predictions of the future, because where would the super hero story be if Ulysses was predicting sunshine, lollipops, and rainbows I don’t even think predicting somebody was going sleep on the subway, would cut it. (Jeez, when did I start channeling 60s on 6?)
Captain Marvel was delighted with this new weapon she could use to fight big, bad Marvel-style Big Bads. Iron Man, not so much. Iron Man didn’t know enough about Ulysses’s powers or agenda, so didn’t fully trust those predictions of the future. Actually, possible futures as Iron Man pointed out, because the Avengers stopped Ulysses’s first dire prediction — that the Celestial Destructor was going to invade — from happening in the slam-bang all-out action sequence that opened Civil War II # 1.
Iron Man’s problem with acting proactively to stop possible futures was, what if to stop a prediction from coming true, the Avengers had to do something bad? Like kill or imprison some people before they could sire a baby that Ulysses predicted was Hitler reincarnated. He had no problem with using Ulysses’s power to stop the Celestial Destructor from invading. That was an “easy call.” It was the potential Baby Hitler type thing that bothered him.
Iron Man didn’t think the Avengers should use Ulysses. Captain Marvel did. So she used him again. When Ulysses predicted that Thanos would raid Project P.E.G.A.S.U.S. to get a piece of the Cosmic Cube, Captain Marvel assembled a team to prevent… (What do you mean, prevent what? Weren’t you paying attention?)
During the battle against the Thanos, War Machine died. When Iron Man learned his best friend died in a battle to prevent one of Ulysses’s predicitons, Iron Man went more ballistic than one of his Repulsor Rays set on overload.
“You killed my best friend. You killed him as good as if you did it with your own hands.” Which was, you should pardon the neologism, alternative facts.
Captain Marvel didn’t kill War Machine, Thanos did. What did Iron Man want the Avengers and War Machine to do? Ignore the possibility that Thanos was determined to strike in the US and let him do it?
If Project P.E.G.A.S.U.S. called the Avengers after Thanos started his invasion, would Iron Man have had any problem scrambling heroes, up to and including War Machine, to stop Thanos? Of course not. So what was the problem with sending a group of heroes to Project P.E.G.A.S.U.S. before Thanos invaded, so they’d be ready and waiting just in case he did show up like Ulysses predicted?
Not only was Iron Man’s position vis-a-vis the Thanos invasion suspect, it wasn’t even intellectually honest. Hey, Iron Man, remember when you said that using Ulysses’s power to make sure a “big cosmic monster doesn’t invade,” was an “easy call?” What part of stopping a “big cosmic monster” doesn’t apply to Thanos? By my count, it’s none.
Iron Man shouldn’t have been any problem with Captain Marvel’s strategy, except for the fact that for the story to movie forward, it needed Iron Man to act all pissy. So Iron Man acted all pissy and stormed out of the whole comic.
All the way into Civil War II #2.
Where he decided he had to learn how Ulysses’s powers worked. So he flew into the Inhuman’s homc city of New Attilan, grabbed Ulysses, took him to an undisclosed location, tied him to chair, and subjected him to some painful tests to determine the workings of his powers. Reports differ as to whether Iron Man tortured Ulysses. Ulysses said yes. Iron Man said “a little bit.” Let’s just say Iron Man employed some enhanced investigation techniques.
So the man who was worried about Captain Marvel going too far had no problem with invading New Attilan and grabbing up a college student for the purposes of a “little bit” of torture. Iron Man’s standards have more doubles than Wimbledon.
In New York, restraining another person, like Ulysses, of his liberty and holding him in a secret location where he isn’t likely to be found is both unlawful imprisonment and kidnapping. That’s two felonies from the guy who didn’t want Captain Marvel to go too far. Which, I suppose, is only fitting, Iron Man commited double crimes with his double standards.
During Marvel’s first Civil War, I thought Iron Man acted a little out of character. Now, in Civil War II, with his ends-justifiy-the-means attitude he’s not a little out of character; he’s another character entirely. I’m not sure who. I’m detecting hints of Lex Luthor with traces of Doctor Doom and just a whiff of DeSaad.
Now, I could be wrong about every one of those traces I thought I detected. I don’t exactly have a refined palate. But it’s good enough to know that what Iron Man did was unpalatable.