|First appearance||Iron Man #104 (Nov. 1977)|
|Created by||Bill Mantlo, George Tuska|
|Alter ego||Maria Collins Carbonell|
|Team affiliations||Howard Stark
Fictional character biography
Maria Stark was born Maria Collins Carbonell. In her adulthood, Maria married Howard Stark, and together they had a son: Anthony "Tony" Stark. Maria was unsuccessful in preventing Tony from seeing Howard's alcoholism, something Tony would later face on his own. Howard secretly programmed Mistress, the AI that controlled the Arsenal robots, with Maria's brain patterns.[volume & issue needed]
On the Ides of March, Maria and Howard were killed in a car accident.(possibly arranged by the V-Battalion).[volume & issue needed] Afterwards, Tony ran his father's company, started a charity in his mother's name (donated funds to finance various charities and renovation projects as well as the Avengers) and later became Iron Man.
Ultimate Maria Stark
The Ultimate Marvel version of the character is renamed as Maria Cerrera, the second wife of Howard Stark. Maria was a brilliant scientist suffered a genetic accident while she was pregnant with her and Howard's child. After Maria died during childbirth, Howard uses a newly invented biological armor to save the life of their son: Antonio "Tony" Stark, named after "Antonio Cerrera" (Maria's brother) that died at a young age. Years later, Loni Stane (Howard's first wife) tells Tony twice that she could have been his mother in a different set of circumstances but Tony says he'd still prefer his own mother instead of Loni.
While the Ultimate version of Maria Stark's life that was depicted have been retconned as an in-universe fictional TV show about Iron Man's life, her character is briefly mentioned by Gregory Stark (Tony's brother within the retconned Ultimate Marvel) when he joking says how he "came out of Mother before [Tony]".
In other media
- Martha Stark appears in the Iron Man episode "The Origin of Iron Man" Pt. 1 voiced by Dimitria Aryls.
- Despite not appearing in Iron Man: Armored Adventures, Maria Stark's image was used in the second season episode "Iron Monger Lives" when Madame Masque uses her mask to impersonate her to mess with Tony Stark's head after he de-activated the Iron Monger armor using Extremis.
- Maria Stark is referenced several times in the direct to DVD film The Invincible Iron Man.
- Maria Stark is shown during a brief slideshow presentation in the beginning of the 2008 film Iron Man. Along with her husband, she dies in an accident many years before the events of the film, leaving Tony Stark an orphan at 17.
- She is later mentioned during a recording of Howard Stark in Iron Man 2 when he called for her to get their son out of his way.
- In Captain America: The Winter Soldier, it is revealed that Maria and Howard's deaths were intentionally caused by S.H.I.E.L.D. (namely caused by the members who were actually Hydra infiltrators).
- "Iron Man (Anthony Stark)". marvel.com. Retrieved October 13, 2013.
- Ultimate Iron Man #0-5
- Ultimate Comics: Avengers 3 #3