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Whatever Happened to Iceman's Inhibitor Belt?

In every installment of Abandoned Love we will be examining comic book stories, plots and ideas that were abandoned by a later writer without actively retconnng away the previous story. Feel free to e-mail me at brianc@cbr.com if you have any suggestions for future editions of this feature.

Today, based on a suggestion from reader Alexandre L., we look at the case of Iceman's inhibitor belt. Now, before we begin, let me note that there really isn't a REAL answer here other than "Oops, we forgot about that," but, well, let's try to make up one of our own!

Our whole problem started back in Thor #377, which came at the tail end of Walter Simonson's epic run on Thor. He had stopped drawing the book at this point so that he could draw X-Factor, which his wife, Louise Simonson, was writing. So Sal Buscema finished out the Thor run as the artist, doing some of the best work of his career. Anyhow, since Simonson obviously had a strong connection to the writer of X-Factor, he was able to do a storyline where Loki kidnapped Iceman and used his special magic machines to increase Iceman's powers to an obscene degree so that he could power up the Frost Giants and then, with Loki's help, they could take over Asgard.

Thor, at this point in time, had been dealing with a curse that has left his body badly broken but unable to actually die. He is still barely able to walk.

However, something fouls up Loki's plan. The frost giants are getting TOO strong! It turned out that Iceman has been trying to overload the machines by piling on the ice, but he doesn't realize that that is making the frost giants insanely powerful. So powerful that they decide to kill Loki and steal the secret to his cold powers...

Loki brings Thor to his home before being knocked out. He figures that the frost giants will destroy the weakened Thor. Thor, instead, decides to save Loki...

Thor gets a special armor made to allow himself to keep moving. He defeats the Frost Giants and takes Iceman home, as Loki sees the next issue after he wakes up...

The problem is that now that Iceman is back on Earth (just in time to learn that his good buddy, Angel, apparently killed himself), he can't control his new, increased powers...

Later in X-Factor #17 (the issue he comes back from his Thor adventure), he ends up freezing an entire building!

In the following issue, when X-Factor is fighting three of Apocalypse's Horsemen (his "Death" has not yet debuted), Iceman saves the day by turning all of Central Park into a glacier!

In X-Factor #23, the team is fighting against Cameron Hodge and his team of anti-mutant soldiers and they clamp a power dampener on Iceman...

However, it turns out that this is the best news Iceman has had in some time, as now he can actually control his overloaded powers!!

So Iceman worked with that inhibitor belt for the next 40 issues or so. Here is it prominently featured on the cover of X-Factor #26...

He sure seems to be still using it even as X-Factor finished out their run on the book (although the belt is thinner now)...

Then he joined the X-Men again...

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