In a battle against Bruce Banner’s maestro, Doctor Doom proves his armor is better at handling the Hulk than Iron Man’s.
CAUTION SPOILER for Maestro: War and Pax # 5!
Iron Man built some amazing armor, but even his brilliant designs don’t stand up to the work of Doctor Doom. Victor von Doom has always had a huge ego, often claiming to be superior to his rival Reed Richards. While Mr. Fantastic has managed to foil Doom’s plans time and time again, there are still plenty of reasons for the villain to boost his self-confidence. In fact, Doom’s latest showdown with the Hulk proves just how formidable he can be.
Maestro: War and Pax takes place in an apocalyptic future, where the embittered Bruce Banner is one of the last surviving superhumans. Instead of working to rebuild what has been lost, the Hulk decides he will rule what remains of humanity. Now passed by Maestro, the Green Goliath sets out to crush anyone who gets in his way, even killing old friends like Hercules and the Pantheon. Still, his job is not finished, as Doctor Doom still appears to be a threat to his regime.
In Peter David, Javier Pina, Jesus Aburtov and Travis Lanham Maestro: War and Pax # 5, Maestro returns home to the civilization of Dystopia to find that Doctor Doom is already waiting for him on his own throne. Approaching the infamous villain, the Hulk shakes his hand before joining him for a meal. As the two sit down and eat, it is revealed that they were working together to defeat AIM and the Pantheon, but when Doom mentions joining together to take over the world, the mood in the room changes.
Maestro admits to Doom that he has no plans to share power and tells the Latverian that he has poisoned his wine. After taking an antitoxin, Doom hits Banner with a powerful blast of energy and a brutal battle begins. At first, Doctor Doom seems to have the upper hand, repeatedly sending Maestro flying through the air through town. It wasn’t until Maestro crashed into an old Alchemax building that things started to change in his favor. Using his surroundings and taking advantage of Doom’s tendency to gloat, Maestro manages to strip his foe of his armor using large electromagnets, before punching him through a wall. As it looks like Maestro is about to finish off his opponent, Doom manages to crawl up to his mask and activate a translocator, teleporting him to safety and saving his life.
Maestro is essentially the Hulk on steroids, having proven to be even stronger than his younger self, but Doom still manages to slap him pretty easily. If the old Avenger hadn’t been able to remove the armor from Doom, he honestly wouldn’t have a chance of winning. That’s a pretty huge accomplishment for the villain, especially considering how Tony Stark’s armor has performed against the Hulk in the past.
Iron Man implemented tons of amazing features into his suits, but even his Hulkbuster armor, which is literally designed to fight the Jade Giant, isn’t capable of slapping the Hulk like Doom does in this issue. Plus, Doom’s ability to put working teleportation tech in his face is a feat Tony Stark certainly didn’t accomplish. While Iron Man is best known for his skills in armor-making, it’s clear that Doctor Doom is just as, if not more competent in the field. Maestro: War and Pax # 5 from Marvel Comics is available now.
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