It looks like Tony Stark’s days as Iron Man may be nearing a close. And a 15-year-old African-American girl will take up the suit.
Riri Williams is a young genius who built her own suit of armor in her MIT college dorm room. The announcement for her character came in an interview with Time magazine. Representing Marvel, writer Brian Michael Bendis talked about some of the ideas behind the new Iron Man. Bendis said that Tony Stark will seek out Riri himself, as he has already heard rumors of her abilities.
“One of the things Tony does to distract himself from all the things going on in his life [referring to the events in Civil War II] is he goes to find this young woman who is flying around the middle of America in an armor that’s not completely made to try to find out what her deal is,” Bendis said. “He’s also aware that this young woman is flying by him in terms of how quickly she’s doing it. Her brain is maybe a little better than his. She looks at things from a different perspective that makes the armor unique.”
Riri follows along the continuing trend that Marvel is making – a more unique, diverse cast of superheroes. This is especially easy to do in comics, as changes or rewrites occur in the MCU all the time. For example, Jane Foster became the new female Thor and Miles Morales debuted as the next Spiderman. In addition, a new storyline could be refreshing for Iron Man, especially as Tony Stark begins to feel stressed from all of his Civil War problems.