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Kevin J. Maroney [userpic]

A note about the first Iron Man film

July 9th, 2013 (12:15 am)
current mood: why am I up this late?
current song: "Particle Man", TMBG

While writing a long comment to Marc Singer's very perceptive short essay on Man of Steel, I made this aside:

The first Iron Man movie made me realize that I have exhausted my tolerance for superhero stories where the good guy wins just by being a little more gooder, or more strongerer, or because the story has to be shaped that way.

Note that Singer's essay and my comments both have some discussion of significant plot surprises for MoS.

To elaborate on that aside (massive spoilers ahead for Iron Man):

In Iron Man, the big fight has two climaxes: Tony Stark leads Obadiah Stane into the stratosphere, where Stane's suit ices up, an established problem with the early generation of the suits. Stane appears to die, but shockingly surprises Tony on the ground; Tony manages to fuddle his way through the fight until Pepper blows up the rooftop reactor at Stark Industries, killing Stane and nearly killing Tony.

The script gets the two climaxes of the fight scene in exactly the wrong order. Blowing up the reactor should have come first, with Stark and Stane miraculously both barely surviving with badly damaged armor. THEN Stark should have lead the chase into to the stratosphere that iced up Stane's suit; Stane falls, inferior suit shatters, Stane dies. Stark could even try to save Stane as he falls, but oops, the fight has left his suit so badly damaged that he just can't catch him. In this ordering of events, Stark wins by virtue of his defining trait--he's the best inventor in the world--and Stane dies of his own malice.

By the way, I'm still alive and posting frequently on Twitter. (@womzilla).