BOYTOONS MAGAZINE #123 – Iron Man – what a pleasant surprise!

Good morning Folks… (FYI, if you haven’t seen the film yet, you may not want to read what follows!)

Fraser and I saw Iron Man last weekend, and though I went rather half-heartedly, not being an Iron Man fan AT ALL, I was rather shocked by what I saw. I expected something lame, but I was actually very much entertained.

You see, I’ve always hated Tony Stark in the comics. Tony Stark is, let’s face it, a grade-A DICK who in my opinion, fucked over most of the Marvel Universe in last Summer’s Marvel cross-over extravaganza, Civil War. He’s pretentious and WAY self-important, and as characters go, he couldn’t be more flawed. From alcoholism to womanizing to wailing on Captain America and being a whiny yes-man… There have just been sooooo many reasons to despise Tony Stark over the years.

And then Robert Downey Jr. came along and saved the day.

You don’t hear that sentence every day. Or at least you didn’t! God knows you never heard it from the producers of Ally McBeal (despite the fact that I personally found him quite charming on the show!). As actors go, Downey has his had his share of flaws. He’s been Hollywood’s black sheep and he’s been near the edge on more than one occasion…

…which made him perfect to play Tony Stark and suit up as the Invincible Iron Man.

He brings a likability to Tony Stark that I never dared hope for. Sure he’s rich and spoiled, and he plays that part of the role exceptionally well, but there is an almost down to Earth humor in the way he does this. You like Downey’s Tony because at some point you realize that he really doesn’t take himself seriously. He doesn’t take much of anything too seriously until he’s kidnapped by terrorists!

That’s when the fun really begins and old shell-head is born. Out of necessity not only comes Stark’s greatest technological achievement, but also a surprising awakening that rouses him from his spoiled rich-boy stupor and makes him realize that he has been on the wrong path all these years. Through newly open eyes, he finally understands that no matter how much you sugar coat your reality, the ugly truth still finds a way to bite you in the arse.

With a renewed sense of decency and morality, Tony Stark vows to do humanity some good, and undo the evil his company, Stark Industries has done all these years, turning a blind eye to ramifications of creating weapons of destruction.

The special effects in the film are of course, brilliant and seamless. Iron Man is beautiful. He is powerful, impressive, nimble and Hell, he’s even kinda sexy! He comes to life in a superb way thanks not just to the special effects team, but also to Downey Jr, who portrays him with fierce intensity interlaced with light humor and an almost disarming awkwardness. He’s not very skilled as a super hero yet. That’s very endearing!

It would be so easy to compare Tony Stark and Iron Man to, say, Bruce Wayne and Batman. Both are rich and spoiled, both are scientific and technological geniuses, and both wear fancy suits and fight crime. And yet, both are so completely different, and the film makes a major point of shining light on this. In some ways, it almost pokes fun at Bruce Wayne’s stuffy martyr complex, and then, just when you think that Tony is going to go along with company (and superhero) policy and deny that he is in fact his heroic alter ego… BAM! The shit hits the fan. I look forward to seeing how Stark sweet talks himself out of that mess in the sequel!

Oh and word to the wise, stay for the credits. Fraser and I had to pee so bad, our eyes were turning yellow. We left as the credits began to roll, and from what I have read since about the film, THAT was a HUGE mistake!

So here is what I have decided. I still HATE Tony Stark in the comics. I cannot forgive him easily for what he has done in the Civil War crossovers. That’s just a fact. But I have realized that it is okay to like Tony Stark on the big screen. It’s also okay to realize that of all the recent Marvel movies, Iron Man stands out as one of my favorites.

Hell, if Tony Stark can have a change of heart, then I suppose, so can I!

Iron Man © Copyright and TM M
arvel Characters Inc. All Rights reserved.

Iron Man the movie © Copyright 2008, Paramount Pictures. All rights Reserved.

Comments

  1. I share your point of view about this movie.it’s a most brilliant one that I expected it would be.but I still hate Stark in the comics!

  2. Yup! Stark in the film is one thing…Stark in the comics is STILL something else!

    Thanks for stopping by, Batsu!

    Hugz + kisses,
    Patrick XOXOX

  3. The Stag God says

    I have to say, though, that Stark’s intrinsically flawed nature is what I like best about Marvel comics.

    In most instances, their heroes aren’t heroes first and people second – they’re people first, warts and all.

    It’s why I find it easier to empathize with them – when they’ve got good writers, they’re allowed to make horrifying mistakes…like Stark and his involvement in Civil War.

    At first, I despised him for the very idea. But then, when thinking about it, I realized: he made a mistake. And he made the kind of mistake that people with power and money tend to make – allowing their very normal human fears to control them. The difference is that when you have money and power, your reactions to those fears are always bigger and more monstrous. McCarthyism definitely taught us that.

    I like those kinds of nuances in fictional characters, really. :)

  4. Raasbwoy says

    Was never really a fan of Iron Man at all and was quite literally dragged to the movie by my friends.

    I must also admit that it was one of the best comic book adaptations I’ve ever seen and a thoroughly enjoyable and well written movie. Downey wa great but Paltrow and Howard rocked their roles.

    Everyone is flawed in some way and this movie made you fall in love with one of the most flawed characters Marvel ever created.

  5. yea i gotta say i aint a big fan of the ironman, big xmen lover here. though now u have said that it will be interesting to watch, nice to see ur view on it :)

    lots of love
    Link
    xxxx
    (p.s check out my blog Patrick, i heard u like fan art of ur own creations :P )

  6. I haven’t seen the movie yet, but hope to this weekend. I’m not sure I had even heard of Iron Man before the movie previews, but I want to see it for several reasons, one of which is that I have always thought Robert Downey Jr. if WAY FUCKIN’ HOT!

  7. Oops, that should have been “is” WAY FUCKIN’ HOT!

  8. Hey Batsu…

    Glad you enjoyed my review. Yup. Great Movie — asshole character in the comics! LOL!

    Hugz + kisses,
    Patrick XOXO

  9. Hey there Stag God…

    I really appreciated your comment. You’re right that part of what makes Tony Stark a successful character is that he is rather flawed. We love to hate him because of his flaws. It’s tough to write characters like that, trust me… but when it works, it’s such a cool thing. You know, I never realized it before, but I really do love to hate Tony Stark, and that is probably exactly the reaction Marvel was going for. Because of my dislike of him, I really did invest myself in the Civil War stuff. He was such a villain in my eyes.

    You could say that is brilliant writing, and ultimately why comics are so fun. They’ve really matured since I was a kid! LOL!

    Thanks again for the great comment.

    Hugz + kisses,
    Patrick XOXO

  10. Hey Raasbwoy! I couldn’t have said it better. The movie really does win us over because we end up feeling for Tony Stark! Who KNEW!?! LOL!

    I also really appreciated the supporting cast. Paltrow played a lovely Pepper Potts (oh that name! LOL!) and all the others were equally great in their respective roles.

    I’ll have to add this one to the DVD pile when it’s released! And I NEVER thought I’d want to do that! LOL!

    Much love, my friend!
    Patrick XOXO

  11. Hiya Link…

    Firstly, thank you so much for the gorgeous drawings of Deimos you did! They’re fantastic and I loved seeing them! :oD I really like your work in general… I’m looking forward to seeing where it takes you.

    As for Ironman, I hope you enjoy it when you see it. As i said, I was very pleasantly surprised! LOL! :o)

    Hugz + kisses,
    Patrick XOXO

  12. Hey Scott…

    Yup. Robert Downey Jr. is a stud! LOL! Plus I think he really beefed up for this role, so even better! Enjoy the film! :o)

    Hugz + Kisses,
    Patrick XOXO

  13. Good words.

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