Move over Tony Stark, there's a new Iron Man — or should we say, Woman? — in town.
Marvel writer Brian Michael Bendis revealed that the company's popular comic book hero will no longer be embodied by the rich business heir of Stark Industries, but will instead take on a new form as a young black woman named Riri Williams.
Riri Williams is a brilliant young teenager who enrolled at MIT early at just 15 years old, and her superhero story begins after she manages to reverse-engineer an Iron Man suit in her dorm room. In an exclusive interview with Wired, Bendis shared that William's new character will be known as Ironheart.
The new character name, Bendis says, came out of a group discussion with editors.“Iron Woman seemed old fashioned to some,” he says. He also mentioned that the new name speaks not only to the soul of the character but to the entire Iron Man franchise. Tony Stark first put on the armor to save his heart and Riri puts it on for different reasons but it's still heart-related.
Bendis, who also created Marvel’s Jessica Jones, said he was inspired to develop this new character after working on a TV show about street violence. "It just seemed that sort of violence inspiring a young hero to rise up and act — and using her science acumen, her natural-born abilities that are still raw but so ahead of where even Tony Stark was at that age — was very exciting to me," he told Time.
Riri Williams joins the ranks of several new and diverse comic book heroes in the Marvel universe. In the past couple of years, Marvel has created a Muslim teenage superhero called Ms. Marvel, a black Captain American named Sam Wilson, and an Asian-American Hulk called Amadeus Cho. No word on when the first comic book starring Riri Williams is set to come out, but is it too early to start dream casting her on-screen role?
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Photo Credit: Marvel