CV's Roundtable User Discussion 039 - Spotlight: Iron Man

Hello everyone. My awesome co-host RazzaTazz got together with some CV users to give some spotlight on Iron Man. The conversation has been posted here for you guys to see, read and enjoy. After the "enjoy" step of this process, be sure to comment below where you can submit your own opinions after reading ours. Even if you disagree with us, we like comments. Also, go back and read our past conversations (Here) and share your thoughts...


Welcome to the RT for Iron Man. Lets get right into it.

Staring: @jorgevy (Jor), @yourneighborhoodcomicgeek (YNCG), @emperor_gonzo_noir (Emp), @thehummingbird (THB)

What is your exposure to Iron Man?

"My first exposure was the first movie."

Jor: Well, my first exposure was the first movie. After that I started reading his comics, mainly 616 and some Ultimate universe and obviously watched IM2 and the Avengers. I also watched some animated shows that featured him like EMH etc....

YNCG: My first exposure to Iron Man was when I bought this big, thick trade paperback of the first 10, classic Avengers comic book issues (the one with Loki, Kang, Baron Zemo, and Wonder Man). I didn't think too much of him at that point, as I was more amazed by Hulk and Thor's character, but as the series progressed, I really liked the development of his armor throughout the ages. It changed from a huge, bulky yellow suit, to a sleek, nice, futuristic battle armor. Granted, Iron Man isn't one of my favorite characters, he's still a fun concept and has really awesome variants of his famous Iron Man armor.

Emp: My first exposure was on the 90's Spider-man cartoon where Spider-man teams up with him, War Machine and Venom to prevent Carnage and Baron Mordo from releasing Dormammu from the Dark Dimension.

It was silly. Almost as silly as Morbius' weird hand suckers.

THB: I have never really followed much Iron Man because his personality is incredibly unappealing to me. I have read a few avengers comics that feature him and seen the previous two movies. That is all the exposure I have had to Iron Man.

What is your favorite story of his? (if you don't know him then it is ok to say the movies or from some other media.)

"I know it's supposed to be non cannon but it was one of my favorite stories and a great turn on the origin of Iron Man"

Jor: I'd have to say I love Ultimate Iron Man written by Orson Scott Card. I know it's supposed to be non cannon with the Ultimates now, or something like that, but it was one of my favorite stories and a great turn on the origin of Iron Man. (too bad someone decided to retcon it into a freaky japanese anime or whatever -.-). On the 616 IM, I gotta say Extremis is pretty rad of a story too

"It isn't an Iron Man story, but he has a major role in it."

YNCG: It isn't an Iron Man story, but he has a major role in it. Most people don't like his depiction in this story arc, but this was the first major story arc that involved Iron Man (I wasn't a heavy comic book reader then), and it was the Marvel Civil War arc. While I was rooting for Captain America and the rebellion 100% of the way, I still kind of felt where Iron Man was coming from, and he even tried to have peace with the rebellion. Sure, Tony made some really bad mistakes and some douche moves, but who doesn't? He's human. Everyone makes mistakes.

"I love that comics can give us stuff [that don't] seem that weird or out of place."

Emp: Doomquest, the one where Iron man and Dr. Doom accidentally get sent back in time to Camelot. I love that comics can give us stuff like this and it doesn't seem that weird or out of place.

THB: Out of what I know of Tony Stark I guess I find his origin story to be the most compelling. It seems to be the only situation from what I have seen (which is very limited) where I seem him experience major character growth due to a dire situation.

A lot of character derive their powers from the magic of superpowers which are never explained, but Iron Man is built off of theoretically possible (though advanced beyond our time) technology. Does that appeal to you as a comic fan?

Jor: Initially it didn't. Heroes that were too realistic, kinda like trying to say "hey this is possible" seemed kinda odd. Iron Man was actually the one that made me change that idea, because then I started to understand that they weren't trying to say that this was possible in our realm but quite plausible in theirs. After that super heroes like Iron Man who derive their powers from some sort of scientific progress or advanced technology have interested me more, but they aren't exactly my favorites. I don't have any sort of higher reliability with them or enjoy them more just because what they do could be seen as theoretically possible.

they are all super and great in what they do, way beyond our current state and that's what makes them great

"He can go against both street levelers and medium/high-tier characters much like Batman."

YNCG: Sort of. It's nothing that will make me instantly read the story (nor like his character), but I do enjoy more down-to-earth stories (usually with street levelers). Iron Man is kind of a hybrid of those. He can go against both street levelers, and medium/high-tier characters, much like Batman with and without prep. However, I am a huge fan of science fiction, science, and stuff like that, so naturally, I really like the atmosphere around Iron Man/Tony Stark's character. I find it appeals to me more than random magical powers and such.

"As a comic fan, I do like the idea of a 'scientifically plausible' hero."

Emp: As a comic fan, I do like the idea of a "scientifically plausible" hero, (even though Stan Lee apparently didn't know that transistors don't work that way), It may be a long way off but the idea that while we won't ever be able to shoot beams out of our eyes or control water, one day we might be able to have jet boots, and that is pretty cool.

THB: Personally I love the idea of a character creating his or her own powers, however, it is a turn of slightly for me due to who the character in this situation is. Characters with powers that theoretically could become reality is always an interesting thing I believe for comic fans.

One of the main arguments which people make about the rise of Marvel Comics is that Marvel made their characters people as well as heroes, for instance with Spider-Man's teen aged lack of confidence. In terms of Tony Stark's alcoholism, do you think that has added a valuable aspect to the character?

"In terms of Tony Stark's alcoholism, do you think that has added to the valuable aspect to the character?"

Jor: Most certainly. DC's heroes at the time had no specific flaws or evident ones. I think having these problems for the heroes in Marvel did give them a boost compared to DC.

In Iron Man's case, alcoholism certainly helped but I don't think it was just that. the different moral ground and behavior, the "heart condition", even the origin, made him quite different from other heroes and gave him a distinct personality. Going from arms manufacturer to world hero; it's just a really interesting aspect and all of Marvel's heroes when they came out had those interesting catches to their personality that DC didn't because of their "super hero paragon archetype" (nothing wrong with that BTW I love paragons) but it was getting old and it was diversified enough.

Marvel, with IM and Spidey and Hulk and etc... showed it was possible to have the good guys be heroes AND humans. Iron Man certainly had his demons in a bottle to face, but that only makes his struggle with himself and the world more valuable IMHO

YNCG: Yeah the alcoholism is certainly a thing that strips away the Invincible part in the Invincible Iron Man. He's human, and even with all these technological advances and inventions, he still has human problems. On top of that, I've always viewed his heart problems with the shrapnel an even more serious and human characteristic about him.

THB: In the case of Tony Stark's alcoholism it makes him more relatable to some, however, I feel like many people would categorize alcoholism different from say Spider-Man's character flaw. Alcoholism shows an inability to properly cope with a situation generally. Why for a time i could enjoy this as something he eventually overcomes, I do not think I would enjoy this as a major plot point of Iron Man getting wasted all the time. As an underlying though it could be nice to see heroes struggling with coping issues.

A character's villains often meet the characteristics of the hero more than the originality of the villainous character. For instance, Batman has the Joker and while Superman has Luthor, there are also a lot of heavies in his rogue gallery. Do you think Iron Man villains rely too much on suits of armor themselves?

"There are some interesting villains such as The Mandarin and A.I.M."

YNCG: I certainly think some villains like Crimson Dynamo, Zeke Stane, Iron Monger, and Titanium Man are a bit redundant and generic, but there are some interesting villains such as The Mandarin and A.I.M. However, I don't think they really RELY on their tech, more so heavily invested in competing and defeating Tony Stark in his area of expertise : technology and engineering.

Jor: I think villains in general are usually either your polar opposite or bad versions of you. in Iron Man's case we see a lot of that, a bunch of his villains are just people who use technology for evil and mainly armors to be villains; instead of what Tony does which is using armors for good.

but I have to agree with ComicGeek here, I think they dont rely on tech, they kinda of USE it to beat Iron Man at his home turf. others just know that Tony is really good when it comes to this type of stuff and hope to subjugate his expertise for themselves.

But in some other way, his villains relying on armors kinda of serves to show that Iron Man is more than just his armor, and that's something his armor using villains and even the other ones, will never understand

"Downey may be acting as himself, but he is a really good representation of Iron Man."

THB: Yes, this is another major turn off about Iron Man for me is that the villains seem incredibly repetitive.

How do you feel about how he is played by Downey in the movies? Some people complain that Downey is just playing himself which is similar enough to Stark, while others think that the portrayal is really good.

YNCG: Downey may be acting as himself, but he himself is a really good representation of Iron Man/Tony Stark! No complaints there!

Jor: yeah pretty much what NeighborhoodGeek said; he may be playing himself but that's close enough actually. I think that Downey brings a more charismatic and empathic side to IronMan that he manages to have difficult with in the comics. Basically, I think Downey made Iron Man have lots more fans thanks to his acting, and that's good. But I dont think he is the only one capable for that role, and if or better yet, WHEN he leaves, Im sure Marvel will find someone suitable, just like they did when they got Robert

THB: I mean Downey is just naturally a lot like Tony Stark. Even if he is not acting he is still the most convincing Stark they could have had to play the role.

Before the first Iron Man movie came out there was some degree of skepticism that fans would flock to a hero movie about a character that wasn't as well known in pop culture. Do you feel because of the exposure in three Iron Man movies and the Avengers (plus cameo in the Incredible Hulk) that Iron Man has become more like an A list comic character?

YNCG: I always thought Iron Man was an A-lister to be honest, just not a major A-lister if you know what I mean. Characters like Captain America and Punisher are A-list, but aren't as popular as Thor, Hulk, etc. until the movies.

"Everyone knows and recognizes Iron Man as easily as Batman or Spider-Man and that's thanks to the movies."

Jor: He was an A-lister for Marvel fans, but he was never an A lister in general like Superman, Batman, Spider-man, Hulk, etc....

Now I'm pretty sure he is, everyone knows and recognizes Iron Man as easily as Batman or Spider-Man and that's thanks mostly to the movies IMO

of course Marvel and Disney getting more animated stuff on the air, and Iron Man being there also helped but the movies were the deal breaker

THB: I believe out of the Avengers cast even Iron Man is the most pronounced and recognizable superhero. I believe he is Marevel's Batman or Superman right now.

Switching gears a bit, do you have a favourite Iron Man armor? (Hulkbuster, Classic Gold and Red, Extremis ... fill in the blank)

Jor: look wise I love the Iron Man 3 Mark 42. In the comics, my favourite would be the Bleeding Edge, not only look wise but also capability wise. it's just really awesome.

other than that..... I always enjoy seeing the "busters" like Hulkbuster, Thorbuster, etc.... and I liked the Asgardian armor from "Fear Itself". Actually I liked all characters visual renditions from that event, but specially that Uru armor Iron Man had.

"Classic costumes are always best with any hero to me."

YNCG: I'll say his Classic Gold and Red was my favorite. It was the first debut of the red and gold concept, and looked awesome for me, and spawned many suits that looked similar to it, like Extremis or Bleeding Edge. Its the original, and is my personal favorite. Hulkbuster is my favorite of the "busters" though.

THB: Classic costumes are always best with any hero to me.

Do you think that Tony Stark being rich makes him more or less heroic? (he wouldn't be able to afford those suits otherwise)

YNCG: Well I personally think Tony is smart enough to just invest in things to make himself rich again, but if he was stuck in debt or poor, then he certainly wouldn't be the same person. However, he'd still be a hero, no doubt about that, but he might do more behind the scene stuff than up front and offensive without his Iron Man armors.

"Tony Stark's wealth is a result of his ego and can feed it"

THB: As in real life I believe wealth should be irrelevant when determining a persons character. In this case I think Tony Stark's wealth is a result of his ego and can feed it, but certainly not the original cause. His money has no relation to if he is heroic, I mean Bruce Wayne.

Jor: Heroism isn't about money, it's about what you do with the things you have. Being rich and still going out of your way, wasting money, endagering your business, your body etc... letting your hedonistic life behind or atleast partially, to be able to week by week save someone's life, for me, that's truly heroic.

How many people in the same position, with as much money as Bill Gates, as attractive as Brad Pitt, with tons of sexy people falling to your knees, being able to go anywhere and do anything, would choose to do the right thing instead, and go save the world at the cost of your whole life?

I think that answers the question


Who would win in chess match between Iron Man and Batman?

Jor: I always believed Iron Man would win most chess matches, but it would be close. I love chess myself and I just see Tony's thought process and personality as better fit for Chess than Bruce's, but it would be close for sure.

YNCG: Batman most likely. Bruce is more cunning and his detective skills are far more valuable in this particular scenario. Chances are, Batman will take advantage of Tony's statistical knowledge to trick him. Tony might over-calculate things in a chess match.

THB: Batman, Iron Man's ego would get in the way.

OK thanks for the input everyone this concludes this RT.

YNCG: Alright I guess we'll go now. Thanks for reading our Ironic RT.

Jor: well, goodbye everyone and thanks for reading our thoughts (creeeeepy)

Special thanks to The Poet for helping edit all this, and, of course, thanks to Razz who did an amazing job hosting this RT. Share your thoughts down below.

-- Geo (sora_thekey) 24/7 geek! -- Follow me on Twitter: @sora_thekey