Key Differences Between Bruce Wayne and Iron Man's Billionaire Status
Bruce Wayne and Tony Stark are billionaires in their respective comic book worlds, but Iron Man has a huge advantage that Batman doesn't.
Warning: SPOILERS ahead for The Invincible Iron Man #1
The two most compared billionaires in the comics are Bruce Wayne and Tony Stark, but Iron Man's latest series highlights the main differences between him and Batman.
In the first installment of Iron Man's ongoing new series, Tony is at a relatively low point in his life. He once had what was thought to be near-infinite money and endless resources. He owns the Avengers Tower which is no longer his. The Star Tower he owned eventually became the Avengers Tower, but it wasn't his anymore either. His iconic waterfront property has sold. He lived in a rather modest building while continuing to try and run his business.
In Gerry Duggan and Juan Frigeri's The Invincible Iron Man #1, Tony Stark is trying to rebuild himself while doing good to the world. That means he spends a lot of time trying to buy dangerous weapons of mass destruction from around the globe. He also paid compensation to victims injured in the explosion at his home. With all that money gone, his lawyer Jennifer Walters warned him he was running out of cash. Tony Stark responds that he only invents Something new to make more money.
Batman Can't Invent Things Like Tony Stark
The superhero personas of Batman and Iron Man differ greatly in demeanor and theme. One is a dark street guard, while the other is an armor-clad dandy with immense power. But the civilian identities of Tony Stark and Bruce Wayne have a lot in common. Both come from wealthy families and are respectively the heads of billion-dollar corporations that bear their names. Fortune is intrinsically connected to both of their characters, and is crucial in allowing them to fund their superhero careers and the gadgets they use to fight villains. However, as this issue shows, their careers as heads of these companies have been very different.
It is noted that Bruce Wayne is more of a CEO with management and decision making. His vast wealth comes from his company's many independently run holdings. Tony Stark, by contrast, was an inventor who played an active role in the company's plans. He actually built the equipment that Stark Industries sells. He is directly involved in the profitability of the company and this is the clear difference between the two. Although both of them lost money Recently in their respective universes, it's taken Bruce Wayne a while to get his business back to the point where he's rich. Meanwhile, as Tony Stark points out in this issue, Iron Man could simply invent something important that would allow him to make money faster than Batman.
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