Marvel’s New Iron Man Will Be a Black Woman

According to Variety, Tony Stark is stepping out the Iron Man suit.  His successor is Riri Williams, a 15-year-old black woman and a science genius who builds her own version of the Iron Man suit in her dorm at MIT.  According to Marvel writer Brian Michael Bendis, Tony Stark will step out of the Iron Man suit end of the comic-book crossover storyline “Civil War II,” and Williams will take over.  Williams debuted in “Invincible Iron Man” No. 7 in March of this year. She was created by Bendis and artist Stefano Caselli.

The decision to incorporate Williams into the Marvel comic-books follows a trend in the last few years of more diverse characters. Bendis is also the creator of Miles Morales, a comic-book iteration of Spider-Man whose father is African-American and mother is Puerto Rican.  Kamala Khan, a teenage Pakistani American, first appeared in the comic-books as Ms. Marvel in 2013. In July, 2014, Marvel caused controversy over its decision to introduce the first female Thor, Jane Foster.  Williams, as with all the comic characters who have come before her, could potentially enter the Marvel cinematic universe. The next Marvel films to hit theaters will be “Doctor Strange” in November, 2016, and “Guardians of the Galaxy, Vol. 2” in May, 2017.  The new series of “The Invincible Iron Man,” by Bendis and Caselli, will launch at the end of 2016.