Monday, February 15, 2016

Iron Monday #3: Tony's idea of telepresence differs wildly from Ciscos

Back in the early 90s, Tony Stark wasn't doing so well. First, he'd been shot by an unstable ex named Kathy Dare in Iron Man Vol. 1 #242. He survived, but was left paralyzed. But oh, things got so much worse. A microchip was implanted in his spine, which turned out to be a plot to take control of the billionaire and ended up slowly destroying his nervous system. While all of this was going on, Stark created a version of his of his Mark VIII armor that allowed him to move while wearing it, but when his nervous system began going to pieces, he created the NTU-150 Telepresence Armor, which first appeared in issue #290.

What made the Telepresence Armor interesting was that it was effectively a robot. Stark at this point was bedridden and slowly dying, so donning an suit of armor was no longer an option. Instead, the TA was designed to be controlled via a special headset that transmitted Stark's thoughts to the armor through subspace. The downside was that he was susceptible to feedback from damage the unit took.

I read the issue where he uses the armor to fight something called the Technovore, which ended with the armor's destruction. I also remember reading issue #291 where Tony saves James Rhodes from the Battledroid attack that started in the previous issue and drops off the War Machine armor and together they whoop some serious ass. I always thought it was cool to see the NTU carrying the other armor in a hand dandy case on its back. The armor looks cool as heck, but I think some of the drama was lost since Tony wasn't actually in the armor. Sure, there was the danger of what was left of his nervous system being destroyed by feedback, but considering that he could just cut the connection before the armor takes a fatal hit.

 Picture sources: 1, 2, 3.

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