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Quote1 Poor Vanko! He sacrificed his life to prove his loyalty to our nation! He shall never be forgotten! Quote2
Iron Man[src]


Anton Igorevich Vanko (Russian: Антон Игоревич Ванко) was born in Armenia[1] and went on to becoming one of Russia's top inventors, and supposedly the world's greatest expert in electricity. One of his inventions was an armor that could control electromagnetism. With its red covering, he named it the Crimson Dynamo. After a demonstration in which he used the armor to destroy a dummy robot modeled after Iron Man and controlled a tank, he was sent to the United States to sabotage Stark Industries, the main supplier of armament technology for the American government. Vanko regretted being set on this course as he admired the young Tony Stark's work.[1]

Anton Vanko (Crimson Dynamo) (Earth-616) from Tales of Suspense Vol 1 46 001

Professor Vanko

During his first mission, he almost caused the experimental Y-69 Rocket to crash, if it wasn't for the intervention of Iron Man, who broke the land of the weapon. The Crimson Dynamo stealthily sabotaged numerous of Stark Industries' facilities, but he wasn't satisfied, as he wanted to defeat Iron Man in combat. During a final assault, Iron Man encountered the Crimson Dynamo, who revealed himself as the person behind the attacks. Vanko tried to electrocute Iron Man, but the armor proved to be more resistant and agile than Vanko expected. Iron Man moved the fight to a forest nearby, where he chopped numerous trees to trap Crimson Dynamo, whose suit didn't have the ability to go airborne. Iron Man then grabbed his enemy and brought him to Flushing Bay, threatening to drop him to the waters which could damage his suit and potentially kill him, forcing Vanko to surrender.

Iron Man tricked Professor Vanko into defecting his nation after recording a false message he pretended to intercept from his superiors that stated Vanko would be killed as soon as he returned (unbeknown to Stark, Vanko's superiors did plan to kill him). He immediately started working for Stark Industries, and tried to atone for his crimes.[2]

One of Vanko's experiments for Stark Industries was a powerful ray gun, which still couldn't have been made safe for use. Two Russian agents, Boris Turgenov and the Black Widow, were sent to kill him for his betrayal. While he was working on his lab, Vanko was neutralized and taken prisoner in a submarine by Turgenov, who proceeded to steal his Crimson Dynamo armor and began using it to sabotage Stark Industries.

After being neutralized as well, Iron Man was captured in the same submarine. The Golden Avenger managed to escape, and returned to Stark Industries with Vanko. Iron Man found himself outmatched during his rematch against Turgenov that took place in Anton's laboratory, so Vanko saw himself forced to threaten Turgenov with his experimental unstable ray gun. Turgenov called Vanko's bluff, but Anton was willing to die for the United States, and fired the machine. Turgenov was killed, and Vanko died in the resulting explosion.[3]

Before leaving Russia, Vanko built a Crimson Dynamo Armor Mark II which he hid separated from its helmet. When the helmet was later found by a teenager, Gennady Gavrilov, the armor was reactivated and its homing function sent it out seeking the helmet in the heart of Moscow, eventually leading it to go up against Iron Man.[4]


Power Grid[6]
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Vanko possessed no inherent superhuman powers. All powers were derived from the Crimson Dynamo Armor Mark I.


Scientific Genius - Professor Vanko was a brilliant engineer and one of the world's foremost experts on electricity and electromagnetism. Counted among his many achievements was the Jet Paralyzer.



Crimson Dynamo Armor Mark I: The Crimson Dynamo armor was an electrically powered, computer-assisted carborundum-matrix alloy exoskeleton equipped with a number of offensive weapons that granted Vanko superhuman abilities.

Superhuman Strength: The armor increased Vanko's physical strength to superhuman levels allowing him to lift approximately 1 ton.[2]

Superhuman Durability: The metal alloy that the armor was constructed of provided Vanko much greater resistance to physical injury than an ordinary human. The armor could withstand high caliber bullets, falls from great heights, and great impact forces without sustaining damage.[2]

Electronic Circuitry: The Crimson Dynamo's armor was equipped with an array of miniature electrical generators that allowed him to generate and manipulate electrical fields for a variety of effects:[2]

  • Electrical Blasts: The Crimson Dynamo could project high-frequency lightning-like discharges of electrical energy from his gauntlets to a maximum distance of approximately 100 feet.[2]
  • Electrical Override: The Crimson Dynamo could uses his armor's circuitry to electromagnetically control nearby electronic devices.[2]
  • Disruptor Field: The Crimson Dynamo could use his armor's circuitry to generate electromagnetic interference capable of disrupting the function of nearby electronic devices.[2]


  • Crimson Dynamo roughly translates into Russian as "Puntsovyy Dinamo" ("пунцовый Динамо") or "Malinovyi Dinamo" ("Малиновый Динамо"). "Puntsovyy" and "malinovyi" both mean "crimson," while "dinamo" means "dynamo."
  • With the release of the film Iron Man 2, and the introduction of an original character named Ivan Vanko, who assumed the title of Whiplash, a comic counterpart to him was introduced in the mini-series Iron Man vs. Whiplash. This Whiplash is named Anton Vanko, but he has no relation with the Crimson Dynamo Anton Vanko.


Notable Appearances[]

See Also

Links and References