Iron Man 2

[SOM #34]

This is the third of six reviews of the MARVEL cinematic universe. This show covers the 2010 sequel to Iron Man.

The first film was a huge success, but with The Dark Knight, expectations were driven far higher, both in terms of box office and critical success. This led to a hell of a lot of people being incredibly disappointed with iron Man 2. In this show, we defend the most maligned of the five MARVEL’s  whilst clearly defining its lazier, sloppier moments. We highlight it’s strengths and the intelligence and heart at the core.

And of course there is the matter of Scarlett Johansson.

Joining me once again are Neil Taylor of GameBurst and KDS 2.0, Josh Garrity of Cane and Rinse and Jerome McIntosh and Paul Gibson of Gonzo Planet. We will be back in just a few days time with Thor.

Author: Alex Shaw

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  1. Had a sudden brainwave while listening to this. Iron Man 2 could be improved significantly by removing one character: Justin Hammer. He’s completely superfluous to the story, presented as a bumbling Tony Stark Lite, when the movie should have focused on Vanko as the grim Tony Stark Dark.

    Cliff notes version: Hammer Industries still gets a mention as taking over the government weapons manufacturing contract that Stark dropped, but instead of Justin ‘masterminding’ Vanko’s employment, it’s Senator Stern. As head of the committee overseeing the contract, Stern has Vanko pressed into service to get them up to speed with Stark, but he plays it as the obfuscating bureaucrat covering his own ass.

    Now without Justin in the way, Rhodey can have more scenes as the guy who is morally disgusted that a violent criminal has been enlisted to work on his War Machine suit, but has to follow orders. Natasha can have more scenes showing her spy skills to ferret out Vanko’s whereabouts, also illustrating that SHIELD is a separate entity from the US government (which otherwise doesn’t become clear until Avengers).

    As an aside, the climax should have been less about Vanko in a suit of his own and more about Vanko wanting to hurt Stark the way he has been. He’s already proved to the world that Stark is personally vulnerable; now Vanko will take away Stark’s loved ones. While his drones attack the expo, Vanko slips in and abducts Pepper. He drags her into the industrial bowels of the complex, revealing the whole place has been rigged for demolition. Instead of an armored brawl, stopping Vanko is about Tony and Rhodey working together to out-maneuver him, perhaps even out of suit (!) while JARVIS operates them to disable the explosives.

  2. Get that man a screenwriting job! Nice one Travis. Now I’m lamenting the Iron Man 2 movie that never was. I’ll be reading this out on the upcoming Iron Man Three podcast… actually would you mind doing something similar for that? You can post it here or email it to me. Unless of course you thought Iron Man Three was perfect just the way it was. -Alex

    • Wow, glad you liked it! Like many amateur critics, I have the benefit of hindsight. =)

      And I definitely have some thoughts about Iron Man Three. I’ll get back to you on that.

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