- Iron Man ... Where's Tony? What've you done with him?
Appearing in "The Claws of the Slasher"
- Baal (First appearance) (on a blurry screen)
- Mister Kline (Shadow only)
- Demitrius (First appearance)
- The Slasher (First appearance)
- Ben Crandal (First appearance)
- Danny (Only appearance)
- Christine (Only appearance)
- Lucie (First appearance)
Races and Species:
- Washington, D.C.
Synopsis for "The Claws of the Slasher"
Two villains known as the Slasher and Demitrius cobble together a machine outside the steps of the Capitol Building. Demitrius feels a psychic warning inside his mind, and warns the Slasher about a passing jetliner. Slasher ignores his partner's concerns and continues making adjustments of his transmitter device.
In the sky overhead, two of the airplane passengers, Tony Stark and Marianne Rodgers reflect upon their lives. Tony doesn't know if he can allow himself to become any more emotionally involved with Marianne than he already is. The plane sets down and the passengers disembark. Slasher and Demitrius activate their machine and the airport suddenly shudders and begins to crumble. Tony quickly changes into Iron Man and uses his repulsor technology to save two pedestrians from falling debris. The sharp power drain greatly weakens Iron Man however and he momentarily collapses.
Slasher and Demitrius meanwhile, retreat to their hidden lair and broadcast their success to their mysterious master, Mister Kline. Kline tells them that they have actually failed however and that the unexpected arrival of Iron Man has put a damper on his plans.
Later, Tony Stark and fellow industrialist Ben Crandal appear before a senate subcommittee. The committee chairman accuses Stark and Crandal of gross negligence in the construction of several buildings and items, including those targeted by Slasher and Demitrius. As Tony testifies before the panel, an invisible beam of energy blasts through the Capitol Building. Tony runs off, changes into Iron Man, then flies outside.
He runs into Slasher and Demitrius and begins fighting them. Demitrius' ESP powers begin going haywire, owing largely to his close proximity to another Esper, Marianne Rodgers. The increasing psychic energy causes Demitrius to mutate and he develops two giant tumors upon his brow. Driven mad, he turns on the Slasher and uses his powers to weaken Iron Man as well. Marianne arrives on the scene and distracts Demitrius, enabling Iron Man the opportunity to take both he and the Slasher down.
Without warning, Marianne Rodgers collapses and Iron Man rushes to her side, cradling her unconscious body in his arms.
Like a monstrous, raging monolith carved of stone - like a living boulder, a titan of sentient stone - behold The Rock! An offbeat name - for the most far-out menace of all!
- As seen on page one, this issue is Story #646 Z.
- This issue contains a letters page, "Sock It To Shell-Head". Letters are published from Dean Mullaney, Bob Rozakis, "Gollum" c/o Rick Mackler, and Robert A. Gillis.
- One scene shows Mister Kline speaking to a mysterious master over a television monitor. This is later revealed to be Baal, a super-sentient computer intelligence from the far distant future of the reality known as Earth-71778. Baal makes his first actual appearance in Daredevil #84.
- The "pincers" that grow out of Demitrius' head are supposed to be colored gold as they are on the cover. In the story however, they are mis-colored grey.
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- ↑ First and only known appearance to date besides flashbacks
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