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Thursday, 7 July 2016

Marvel's new Iron Man is 15-year-old black girl

The new Iron Man character, Riri WilliamsImage copyrightMARVEL/JEFF DEKAL
Image captionThe character, Riri Williams, is a science genius who builds her own armoured suit at university
Comic book maker Marvel has revealed a 15-year-old black girl will be donning the famous armour of Iron Man in an upcoming episode of the series.
Civil War II sees Tony Stark hang up his boots to be replaced by Riri Williams, the company said.
The character is a Chicago-born science genius studying at MIT and made her debut earlier this year.
The news has prompted a huge reaction online, with many welcoming it as a step forward for diversity.
Iron Man writer Brian Michael Bendis told Time he came up with Williams' character after being struck by the "chaos and violence" of Chicago while working in the city.
"And this story of this brilliant, young woman whose life was marred by tragedy that could have easily ended her life, just random street violence, and went off to college was very inspiring to me.
"I thought that was the most modern version of a superhero or superheroine story I had ever heard."
The Iron Man character first appeared in 1963. The series focuses on billionaire weapons inventor Tony Stark.

There has been jubilation at the news

Image copyright@ERICSMITHROCKS
A tweet reads: Image copyright@I_AM_OTHER

But not everyone was impressed

A tweet reads: Image copyright@PHOEBOBUFFAY
A tweet reads: Image copyright@LEKE03

There were practical questions

A tweet reads: Image copyright@EMULATELIFE

Or had Marvel missed a trick?

A tweet reads: Image copyright@KEATINGTHOMAS
A tweet reads: The only thing offensive about the new Iron Man being a black woman is that it's not Beyoncé.Image copyright@GAYATHOMEDAD

And some questioned Marvel's commitment to diversity

A tweet from Ira reads: Marvel Comics: Image copyright@IRA