Iron Cat had a solid start with Jed MacKay picking up where he left off in the previous Black Cat series. To kick things off Felicia Hardy learned that there were more long term consequences to killing Black Fox than simply knowing she was responsible for his death. Because now Felicia has to deal with fellow Black Fox protégé and her ex-girlfriend Tamara Blake coming after her to get revenge for Black Fox’s death. If that wasn’t bad enough Tamara is getting her revenge by using the Iron Cat armor that Felicia created using Tony Stark’s technology to do so. How will things go now? Let’s find out with Iron Cat #2.
Writer: Jed MacKay
Artist: Pere Perez
Colorist: Frank D’Armata
Iron Man brings Black Cat to his Stark Holding Facility in New Jersey to figure out how to get the Iron Cat armor back from Tamara Blake. While discussing things Black Cat reveals how she used Tony Stark’s Nanoforge to create the Iron Cat armor.
It is then shown that Tamara Blake broke into The Stack, an A.I. Prison Facility, two weeks ago to form an alliance with Madame Menace to get revenge on Felicia Hardy and Tony Stark.
In the present Tamara has uploaded Madame Menace A.I. to help run the Iron Cat armor.
Back at Stark Holding Facility remembering how Tamara operated in the past Felicia comes up with a plan to draw her out with Tony’s help.
Later at a Tony Stark hosted party on a yacht Felicia and Tony wait for Tamara to show up. They don’t wait long as Tamara in the Iron Cat armor shows up ready to kill Felicia and Tony with Madame Menace’s help. End of issue.
For as little as Black Cat and Iron Man have interacted Jed MacKay quickly dives into the fun chemistry they have with each other. Its that chemistry along with a deeper dive into Tamara Blake quest for revenge on Felicia Hardy that made Iron Cat #2 such a fun read.
Now it does have to be said that Iron Cat #2 lack of action is noticeable compared to the first issue, where we had the Black Cat vs Iron Cat fight. We do get a fun action-like sequence with Tamara Blake breaking into The Stack that showcased her master-level infiltration ability. But that action was more done to put over Tamara’s stealth, which was well executed on by Pere Perez’s artwork, than any punches or kicks thrown.
That said, the whole sequence works to put a spotlight on not only Tamara’s abilities but also her plot as the antagonist for Iron Cat. As this is a team-up comic book between Black Cat and Iron Man it is smart move to bring in an Iron Man villain into the story in the form of Madame Menace. Even in not being overly familiar with Madame Menace’s character I appreciate having both Black Cat and Iron Man villains involved in this story.
Adding in Madame Menace A.I. to enhance what Tamara is doing with the Iron Cat armor makes them both an even deadlier combination. Now Black Cat and Iron Man can’t simply tank Tamara as Iron Cat. They will have to work together to overcome their villains teaming up against them.
This worked well in conjunction with the continuation of the connection between Felicia and Tamara. We see that they weren’t simply a hook-up while they were both Black Fox’s proteges. There was a genuine romantic connection that Felicia and Tamara shared at one point. That deeper connection makes Tamara’s anger over Felicia killing their mentor her a more compelling antagonist. This adds a new layer to the new villain Felicia has gained in her personal rogues gallery.
But the real star of Iron Cat #2 was the chemistry between Felicia Hardy and Tony Stark. MacKay does a great job showing how Felicia and Tony perfectly balance each other out. It’s the little things like Felicia nonchalantly throwing the phone she used to hack into Tony’s Nanoforge that works so well. Tony’s annoyance over having the Iron Cat armor makes how much dialogue he is given work it is all in character to explain why this is such a pain in the ass for him. Felicia’s more minimal dialogue balance this out as she knows she has to let Tony let out all his tech talk out or else they’ll never get anywhere.
At the same time, we get to see more of how it is Felicia’s knowledge on Tamara and their training with Black Fox that is key to this story. Knowing Tamara as well as she does Felicia comes up with a plan that easily draws out her new enemy. Felicia’s plan incorporating Tony’s wealth by forcing him to throw a party on a yacht made things even better. It continued to help play into the chemistry Felicia and Tony have while keeping them both involved in the plot rather than this just being Black Cat vs Iron Cat.
Jed MacKay and Pere Perez deliver another fun issue of Iron Cat. The chemistry between Felicia Hardy and Tony Stark shines throughout Iron Cat #2. Add in the deeper dive into the plot behind the new villain using the Iron Cat armor against Black Cat and Iron Man and you have comic book that is just fun to read.
Story Rating: 8 Night Girls out of 10
Art Rating: 8 Night Girls out of 10
Overall Rating: 8 Night Girls out of 10