Tales Of Suspense #44:Iron Man Faces the Menace of The Mad Pharaoh!

Review By:


we have already had The Fantastic Four, Thor and Ant-Man travel though time.  This Month its Iron Man’s turn at time travel; sending him 2000 years back into the past to ancient Egypt and the court of Cleopatra.

what can lead to an amazing and suspenseful tale like this, how about i offer us a bit of a summary.  Tony Stark & Iron Man agree to help out an archeological Friend of Stark’s.  At this dig they bring up an antient Mummy of the ” Mad Pharaoh” whom has a magical artifact that he uses to transport him and Tony Stark back in time to Egypt.

His plan is to use Tony Stark’s modern weapons knowledge to his advantage, to succeed at the conquest he failed at those century’s before.  but lucky for us, Mr. Stark has other idea’s involving Iron Man.  Can he stop The Mad Pharaoh and maintain our history?


I feel that this story was well written, and I enjoyed reading it. It touched upon many topics including the difficulties tony stark now must endure in his life, just to live. Never being to far from a power plug, for without power his heart will stop.

it also helps to ground magic into the scientific world we have seen predominantly for the marvel universe.  the mad pharaoh’s artifact is the best example of this in the story.


I feel Don Heck did a great job with the artwork of this iron man story.  Early in the issue we have an ill tony stark, struggling to get back to his room and plugged in before it’s too late and he passes out after a night of partying.  This would be the end of stark, and likely a defining moment.  Don Heck I feel knew this, in  both the way he drew it, as well as the amount of page space he allowed it to have, taking up almost a whole page of panels.

Originality & Continuity

At this point I feel that  I need to point out; that this comic is from the summer of 1963; the same year as a summer blockbuster titled “Cleopatra” was coming out?  Never for a minute did I suspect that this story and that movie was coincidental.  However at the end, I got just satisfaction, by the authors practically admiring to it.

it is here we have Tony stark, exiting the premiere of the movie, and being interviewed about it. I feel it is a great and appropriate ending for the issue, and tying the story in with its inspiration, a major thumb’s up.

Characters & Development

Iron Man & Tony Stark

I feel a lot of growth for our hero, and his secret identity was offered in this issue, from how he interacted in the past, to how he has to live his life.  I discussed a bit above the panels about him  needing the electric, having been out partying and trying to make it back to his room.  I feel this is perhaps the most important bit of character development in this issue.

The Mad Pharaoh, Cleopatra, and Ancient Egypt.

what we have here, more than character building is world building. it is establishing the history of this world, to be similar but not at all identical to that of our own, just as the present is not the same.

This will go a long way I feel for the marvel universes future in establishing a unique world, and history.

Book Information:
Cover Date: Aug 1963
Read At:
  • Stan Lee
  • Dick Ayers
  • R. Berns
  • Sam Rosen
Review Ratings:
Originality And Continuity&#9733&#9733&#9733½&#9734&#9734
Character And Development&#9733&#9733&#9733&#9733&#9734&#9734
Temporal Suspense&#9733&#9733&#9733&#9733&#9733&#9734
  • Iron Man
  • Paul
  • The Mad Pharaoh
  • Cleopatra






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