Tony Stark, the quintessential playboy/genius/billionaire, is soon to be replaced in the Iron Man suit in the Marvel Comics universe by a teenage black girl. That's the breaking news emerging after Marvel writer Brian Michael Bendis gave an exclusive interview to Time Magazine published earlier today on July 6th.

Brian Michael Bendis writes the Invincible Iron Man and Civil War II series and created Riri together with artist Stefano Caselli. Bendis says he was inspired to create Riri by time spent in Chicago and a story of a young woman who grew up in its turbulent and often violent streets.

Gifted with a brilliant intellect, she went on to college rather than succumb to her dangerous environment. The idea struck him as "the most modern version of a superhero or superheroine story" he had ever heard.

Riri Williams and'Civil War II'

Marvel Comic's Civil War II series sees Tony Stark giving up the Iron Man suit to Riri Williams, a precocious teenage genius who is attending MIT at the age of 15. As mentioned in a Wired report, Riri already appeared in Invincible Iron Man #7, which was released earlier this year in March.

Tony Stark becomes aware that an MIT student is taking apart one of his old suits that she found on campus and together with some stolen parts, was putting it back together in her dorm room. Bendis has been building her background and highly intelligent character in the background.

Riri is even more talented than Tony Stark was at her age, even though she is still learning and Bendis promises that she and Tony will meet up soon. In the current scenario of the Marvel Comics story line, Tony confronts the death of James Rhodes, aka War Machine, who is killed at the beginning of Civil War II, along with the collapse of his company and the knowledge that his true parents aren't who he thought they were.

It's partly to distract himself from his own troubles that he sets off to investigate the stories of a young woman using her own unfinished Iron Man armour. He's intrigued by how quickly she's gone from tinkering with an old Iron Man suit to flying across the country.

A more diverse Marvel Comics universe

The Time Magazine interview mentions the controversies that have greeted the introduction of diverse new characters into the Marvel Universe like Jane Foster, the female Thor and Kamala Khan, a Muslim teenage girl, but Bendis also notes that there has been a "wave of love" for them too.

At first, many fans were sure that Riri would be the next War Machine, but Bendis had bigger plans in mind for the teenage genius. However, despite the move to hand the Iron Man suit from Tony Stark to Riri Williams, fans shouldn't assume they can infer the ending to Civil War II. Bendis insisted to Time reporters, "We're not telling you the end, at all."

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