Appearing in "Enter the Mandarin - Part One (of Six)"
- Gengis Khan (Referenced)
- Yesukhei (Referenced)
- Veronica Vogue
- General Rayburn (Mentioned)
- Avengers (Mentioned)
- People's Liberation Army
- General Ho Lee (Death)
- Several unnamed officers (Only appearance; death)
- President Chen Shui-bian (Mentioned) (Topical reference)
Races and Species:
- United States of America
- Belgrade, Serbia (Mentioned)
- Taiwan (Mentioned)
- Crimson Dynamo Armor Mark I (Mentioned)
- Iron Man Armor Model 2
- S.H.I.E.L.D. Uniforms
- Mandarin's Rings
Synopsis for "Enter the Mandarin - Part One (of Six)"
A man who will one day come to be known as the Mandarin scales the peaks in the Valley of Spirits. He discovers the ruins of a derelict space craft and recovers ten ornate rings - all of which enable him to wield great power. Feeling as if it is his destiny to wield such tools, the Mandarin begins establishing his power base in Communist China.
Stark Industries CEO Tony Stark is called into a special S.H.I.E.L.D. conference. They want his "bodyguard" Iron Man to perform a deep cover reconnaissance mission in China. When he asks why, they tell him that a Chinese warlord has been exerting undue influence over the political climate and they want Iron Man to assess the threat level.
At his castle, the Mandarin has a meeting with a group of Chinese nationals. They want him to use his power and influence for the benefit of the state, but the Mandarin feels that he is beyond such pedestrian matters. They attempt to force him to comply, but the Mandarin responds by destroying them with the power of his rings.
Later, a S.H.I.E.L.D. dropship deposits Iron Man over mainland China. He flies to the Mandarin's castle and navigates through a gauntlet of security devices. The Mandarin secretly monitors the display from his private chambers and decides that this Iron Man represents the antithesis of everything that he stands against. Donning his ceremonial cloak and helmet, the Mandarin readies himself for battle. Upon meeting for the first time, the two combatants charge at one another.
- Iron Man: Enter the Mandain retells Iron Man's first clash against his arch-nemesis the Mandarin, who first appeared in Tales of Suspense #50. The limited series adapts the original tales from Tales of Suspense #50-55, by Stan Lee and Don Heck.
- Rick Stoner is mentioned as the current Executive Director of S.H.I.E.L.D.; however, this has become a Topical Reference due to Earth-616's Sliding Timescale. According to the current timeline, Tony's father Howard Stark had founded S.H.I.E.L.D. in the early 1960s, appointing Rick Stoner as the first Director; Nick Fury later took over as Director after Stoner's presumed assassination.
Characters in this story also appear in other stories between this issue. The affected characters are:
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- Pag. 8, Panel 4 - Pag. 10, Panel 6
- Pag. 11, Panels 1-2
- Pag. 11, Panel 3 - Pag. 13, Panel 4
- Pag. 14-21
- Pag. 22, Panels 1-2
- Pag. 22, Panels 3-4
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