Synopsis for “Crescendo!”
Iron Man was literally in the grip of the Mandarin’s giant android, Ultimo, and hurtling toward a rocky wall. He then averts the stunning and perhaps lethal impact by using his jet boots to direct himself away from the rocky outcrop. Iron Man, though free, discovers that he is out-matched physically in every way to his foe. Weapons and strength are useless as the armored hero reels before the onslaught of Ultimo’s eye beam attacks. The Mandarin is only viewing and directing the action from afar by television monitor and concludes that Iron Man is in flight. Rather than just purposeless flight from Ultimo, Iron Man acts on the knowledge he gained as Tony Stark in the Mandarin’s Castle and lures the giant humanoid back to the volcano in which it was created. Iron Man gets Ultimo to unleash the power of the volcano itself in a dodge of the eye beams that have been assaulting him through the Chinese countryside. Ultimo is ultimately undone by the lava flow loosened by its own blasts and the Mandarin takes solace in his inevitable conquest of the world and believing to have killed Iron Man’s employer Tony Stark. Iron Man however is still stranded in Red China though the Mandarin has abandoned any further interest in the Avenger. Iron Man crosses the landscape on foot to reach an air base of the Red Army that had been threatening the Mandarin before Ultimo attacked. Under-powered, Iron Man fights the remaining troops to get at a remaining MiG fighter that he hopes will fly him back to Western controlled airspace. Airborne in the stolen craft the Avenger is intercepted by US fighters but manages to avoid being shot down thanks to his Avenger security clearance. Back in the States and resuming his civilian self finds Tony Stark, a day later, at the gates of his now closed Flushing factory and offices with scattered discarded newspapers sporting the headlines that the government has ordered the place shut down. Tony reads from one of the papers the details that his money has been frozen and a warrant is standing for his arrest on top of the closure of all of Stark Industries.