With the release of Iron Man 3 this weekend, I began to wonder why it seems that Iron Man is the most popular Marvel superhero right now. Of course all the Marvel movies are doing very well, I love all of them myself. But Iron Man is definitely my favorite, with Thor being a close second. But why? What is it about Iron Man that is cooler and more exciting than Thor or Captain America or the Hulk? I know the budget is larger, so naturally they can have more things blow up and cooler special effects and bigger actors (though I love Natalie Portman and Chris Hemsworth and Chris Evans). But Iron Man has had some pretty big stars in it, even as the bad guys: Jeff Bridges, Mickey Rourke, and now Ben Kingsley and Guy Pearce. Those are big name stars! But why did Iron Man get such a big budget? Because the first one did so well. So I was left contemplating why everyone loved the original Iron Man so much.
First, Robert Downey Jr is about the best Iron Man ever. He pulls the character off so beautifully. He has the perfect personality for it and it seems to just come so easily to him. And I think Gwyneth Paltrow is a great Pepper Potts. A quietly strong woman who can contain Tony Stark. So the casting was great. But the casting only does so much – it’s the characters that we love. And there’s where my epiphany happened!
It is the type of characters that are in this story that get us all so attached. Tony Stark is this arrogant, cocky, sarcastic, jerk but secretly he is a sweet guy who wants love and to save the world. That character is so popular right now – that is the character that I absolutely love in my books. I think about Will Herondale and Jace Wayland. This type of leading male character is very popular. I think it’s because he has the bad boy attitude, but deep down he really isn’t a bad guy. The best of both worlds. And with the popularity of this type of character, of course Iron Man is going to do well over the other Marvel Superheroes who aren’t quite as arrogant and sarcastic. And add to it that Robert Downey Jr is playing him, now he’s cocky, sweet and hot. What a great combination! But Pepper is also the type of character this is popular right now. She is quiet and reserved and doesn’t cause much trouble, but she has a way to reign in the cocky character. To make him want to be a good man. Which is exactly what she does with Tony Stark.
So yes, I think the casting and the budget obviously make for a good film. But it’s the characters themselves that are making the Iron Man series the best series out of all the Marvel movies right now.