Tony Stark’s long-lost twin brother Gregory became a key player in Marvel’s Ultimate Avengers series, as a smarter, badder, and more evil genius.
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There is little debate that Tony Stark is one of the smartest people in the Marvel universe, and apparently, genius runs in the family. Howard Stark passed his brilliant mind to more than just Iron Man... he passed it to Tony’s twin brother, Gregory Stark.
Since when does Tony have a twin? Believe it or not, Gregory was first introduced in Ultimate Comics Avengers #2 back in 2009. When the Ultimate version of Nick Fury reopens the Avengers Project in response to the return of the Red Skull, who (as always) is after the Cosmic Cube, Gregory joins as a sort of right-hand-man to Fury. He even enlists a few new team members, including Red Wasp and Nerd Hulk, a clone of the Hulk that Gregory created with the mind of Bruce Banner — similar to the smart version of the Hulk seen in Avengers: Endgame.
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Gregory and Tony may share a genius-level intellect, but that is about all they have in common. Gregory harbors much resentment towards his brother for inheriting the family company, Stark Industries, instead of him. While Tony is fun-loving and carefree, Gregory is somber and humorless, and sees Tony as a drunken embarrassment to the family name. But he earns his place with more than just his name, as Ultimate Comics Avengers #3 sees Nick Fury describe Gregory as "ten times smarter than Tony is and completely amoral... In other words, just the kinda guy I like doing business with."
Fury later comes to regret his decision to work with Gregory, as the elder Stark twin frames him for leaking superhuman research to the black market. Gregory’s plan is to take over as Director of SHIELD, and smuggle super soldiers to various rebellions around the globe to remake the world in his image — and the plan almost works. Gregory has his men shoot Fury and leave him for dead, but Fury survives and confronts Gregory alongside the Avengers. Proving his intelligence, Gregory reveals he actually predicted such an altercation would take place. His solution? Inject himself with nanites to gain superpowers and easily best the team. However, his plot is foiled when the Ultimates and Avengers team up to defeat him in Ultimate Avengers vs New Ultimates #6. Thor manages to take Gregory down with a lightning blast after Tony disables the nanites. Talk about sibling rivalry.
Like many villains, Gregory does not see himself as one. He defends his actions as more than classic villainy, asking if "none of you people see what I’m doing? Will nobody stand back and take a look at the big picture? I’m not one of your ridiculous super-villains. This has all been planned for the best of reasons." Gregory truly believes his actions are for the greater good. In a way, this is reminiscent of Tony Stark in Civil War. Both Stark brothers will do whatever it takes to make the world a better place, even if their ideas of ‘a better place’ don’t align with everyone else’s.
Gregory Stark may have ultimately perished in the comics, but there’s always a chance his for future stories. Honestly, how would fans respond to seeing Robert Downey, Jr. return to the MCU as Tony’s long-lost evil twin? All he’d have to do is dye his hair blonde. Think about it, RDJ. Think about it.
Next: Tony Stark Once Became Doctor Strange, NOT Iron Man