When it comes to superheroes, all they show you on screen is how they fly, swing, jump off from building to building, dodge a bullet or move faster than one... Isn't it fishy that they never show superheroes doing ordinary things, like brushing their teeth, taking a dump or something? And the worst part is- they're all in New York!
I don't have the slightest clue as to why all known Superheroes live in New York. To my knowledge, the city has more superheroes living in it, than ordinary men... Even the beggars and crooks of New York have superpowers. Don't believe me?
Spider-Man : Queens, New York.
The Fantastic Four : Baxter Building, New York.
The Daredevil : Devil's kitchen, New York.
Hellboy : Newark, New Jersey, New York.
Tony Stark : Born in Long Island, New York.
Batman : Gotham City
Superman : Metropolis
Though the last two are fictional cities, both of them take huge references- skyscrapers, buildings, parks and skyline from New York. In fact Gotham city is a common nickname for New York. It's said that Gotham is New York at night, and Metropolis, New York at daytime.
So, why does every crime-fighter have to live in New York? Aren't there any instances of crime in other cities in the U.S? We have Los Angeles, Chicago, San Francisco, Detroit, Seattle, Las Vegas... The list goes on... But why do comic books place Superheroes in New York? Mostly because
1. New York City has one of the greatest populations in the world [among other cities, that is]... So, if the number of ordinary people is high, then so is the number of rich fools, who believe in all that Superhero shit.
2. New York is a confluance of cultures- the Americans [black, white, red, blue and yellow included], the Chinese, Indians and Europeans. So, any sort of Superhero [even the one who just eats hamburgers all day and farts at villains] is welcome.
3. The ambience. New York has one of the most astounding skylines in the world. No one wants to see a superhero fly over a cornfield! They want him swing past skyscrapers [and thereby prove to the common public that he is not afraid of heights, and consequently, not afraid of villains also].
4. The creators of the characters- from the artist to the publisher, live or have lived in New York.
Anyway, there are lots of things about Superhero-New Yorkers, which thus leave behind, non-New York superheroes. Among them are Iron-man and Wolverine. Wolverine is from a totally different country- Canada. So, let's keep him aside for a while [also, Wolverine is my pen-name. I don't wanna mock at that]...
When all the other superheroes take off to Manhattan and Brooklyn to show off, Tony Stark rules Malibu, California. He's one of my favourite characters because
- He is definitely not a New Yorker
- He does not make non-sense out of superpowers [I mean, he doesn't have any superpowers. He just manages the task with his brain and technology. You can argue that Batman does the exact same thing, but Ironman is different as explained below]
- He does not have a droopy old man Alfred as a butler. Instead, he has a cute lady, Ms. Potts as his assistant
- While Iron-man fits perfectly into the definition of a Superhero, Batman sometimes appears as an anti-hero
- Bruce Wayne is a teetotaller, while Tony Stark is the guy who knows how to party with drinks
- While Batman's heart was philosophically broken by the death of his parents, Ironman's heart is literally broken by a piece of broken explosive- a shrapnel
- Batman fights crime, maintains justice, blah blah blah... Ironman kicks ass only when he is meddled with
- Bruce is a scientist and a businessman. Tony is an engineer and an industrialist
- Batman is from DC, while Ironman is from Marvel [Duh?]
- In the movie of course, he disclosed his true identity. Now that's something not every superhero does [Again, you know that The fantastic Four did it. So i'd have to change the sentence to Now that's something not every superhero without superpowers does]
- Most importantly, he's an ELECTRICAL ENGINEER like me!!
- His causes are contemporary- Vietnam war, Gulf War and Afghanistan War
- What he does makes sense- He's an industrialist and so he hates communism
- He's natural. He doesn't hide his motives [like Batman] or his feelings [like Superman]
- He ogles pretty women and mostly gets laid
- He's not that ideal character whom you wanna have as a role model. He does what he feels like and mostly has a lot of bad-mood displays
- He does not only enjoy his life, he is an inventor
- He does not only fight villains, he also fights alcoholism
- Looks + Personality + Brains + Money + Attitude + Fun = Ironman
- Lastly, he's being portrayed by one of the greatest, most versatile actors of the day- Robert Downey Jr
When Iron Man 1 was released in 2008, it received a warm welcome and positive reviews from all sorts of critics. Indeed, half the perfection should go to the character [and the actor who blended with it] and the rest to the director. Owing to the positive reaction from the masses, Downey appeared in a cameo role in Hulk-II as well, portraying himself. Very soon, in 2010, Iron Man 2 was released and even before its launch, it created a lot of hype due to
- Replacement of Howard Terence with Don Cheadle as Rhodey...
- Inclusion of Scarlett Johansson
- Soundtracks from AC/DC
- Absence of unnecessary action sequences
- the lip-lock between Robert Downey Jr. and Gwyneth Paltrow [which, we expected in Ironman 1 itself]
I believe that Ironman is the first of its kind when it comes to launching the sequels so closely spaced in time. And what do you know?? The positioning wasn't wrong either. In fact, there might have been a loss of enthusiasm if the release was delayed. Ironman, thus becoming a popular in the list of "Cut-the-bullshit" Superheroes is expected to come back in 2012 in Avengers [possibly a merger of superheroes of the Marvel Universe] and in 2013 in Ironman 3. Marvel has taken a bold step in being the first to bring forth the collective of its superheroes to the silverscreen. DC has been doing it with its JUSTICE LEAGUE franchise on cartoons long enough... And believe me, it's a hell lot easier to bring disciplined DC heroes [like Superman, Batman, Wonderwoman, Flash, Green Lantern, Hawkgirl and the Martian Manhunter] closer, than to do the same with self-oriented Marvel heroes. Imagine what it'd look like when Spider-man, Hulk, Wolverine, Ironman, Fantastic Four and others work together...
Anyway, if it's timing that movies need to bring success, then you can bet your ass that Ironman won't disappoint you... This reminds me of the proverb "Strike the iron while it's hot". And surely Ironman will strike when he's hot- red hot baby!!!