How Iron Man Became the Template For Avengers Films Due to Stark’s Ability to Question Himself

As part of their ongoing commentary of the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU), Debra Minoff and Susannah McCullough of Screenprism explained how Iron Man is really the backbone of all the Avengers films. The Tony Stark character had it all good looks, wealth and a quirky sense of humor that added some levity to the story. What was most relatable to audiences, however, was Stark’s ability to grow and mature as a human, to question his motives and be horrified by what his inventions could do. These traits were not too common in superheroes up to that point. These questions along with the seamless special effects, which also portrayed Stark’s suit failures as well as successes, Iron Man set the mold for all MCU films to come (including post credit scenes).

This was the first of many MCU movies in which the villain is a dark mirror of the protagonist. The villain has a lot in common with the heroic lead but unlike the hero he uses his abilities for evil. Iron Man created the Marvel trope of a superheroes potential to unintentionally do harm…in later Marvel movies we see other heroes grappling with this question of whether what they’re doing is really helping or hurting…Iron Man also kicked off traditions like Marvel’s trademark mid and post credits scenes with an epic cameo by Samuel L.Jackson.

Lori Dorn
Lori Dorn

Lori is a Laughing Squid Contributing Editor based in New York City who has been writing blog posts for over a decade. She also enjoys making jewelry, playing guitar, taking photos and mixing craft cocktails. Lori can be found posting on Threads and sharing photos on Instagram.