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Characters: Iron Man Films
This page lists characters who appear in the Iron Man
and Marvel Cinematic Universe
films Iron Man
, Iron Man 2
and Iron Man 3
For characters appearing in the comic book franchise
, see the Iron Man comic book character sheet
open/close all folders
Anthony "Tony" Stark / Iron Man
Anthony "Tony" Stark / Iron Man
Click here to see the Iron Man MK XLIII suit
A brilliant engineer and CEO of Stark Industries with his own self-designed Powered Armor
. After being held hostage by terrorists, and escaping, his world view and philosophy changes, leading to him shutting down the weapons manufacturing division of his company, and becoming the hero Iron Man.
- The Alcoholic: Many scenes involve alcohol. In Iron Man 2 he gets plastered while wearing the suit.
- Always Someone Better:
- In the second film, it seems Tony thinks his father was his Always Someone Better. Quite aside from Howard Stark's apparent lack of parenting skills, he's been "dead for almost twenty years...still takin' [Tony] to school".
- It's not given a lot of screentime, but Tony seems to think of Steve this way. Not hard to imagine why, since he grew up hearing stories about how great Captain America is from his father. Tony sees Steve as someone who was simply born a good person while Tony still struggles with his narcissist tendencies.
- Anti-Hero: He's one of the good guys but he has a lot of character flaws. Lampshaded by Tony and everyone around him at least once per film.
Pepper: Is this about the Avengers? Which I know nothing about.
Tony: The Avengers initiative was scrapped, I thought. And I didn't even qualify.
Pepper: I didn't know that either.
Tony: Apparently I'm volatile, self-obsessed, and don't play well with others.
Pepper: That I did know.
- Appropriated Appellation: The press comes up with "Iron Man", and he decides to go with it. In the Novelization, Tony even imitates Ozzy Osbourne's "I AM IRON MAN!" when reading the news.
- Arm Cannon: Several of Iron Man's weapons are mounted on his forearms, such as the Mark III's anti-tank missile and the Mark VI's lasers.
- The Atoner: Initially, he really didn't give much of a crap about who was blowing up what with his toys, but after being held hostage by terrorists armed almost exclusively with weapons made by his company and subsequently having his life saved by Yinsen (who's treated many fatal injuries caused by Stark's shrapnel-laden weapons), he became this.
- Attention Deficit... Ooh, Shiny!: Tony's eccentric nature and constantly active brain makes him prone to zoning out of what he's supposed to be doing.
Stern: Mr. Stark? Mr. Stark!
Tony: (turns around) Hmm, yes dear?
- Autobots, Rock Out!: Tony loves him some AC/DC and Black Sabbath. He loves to blast AC/DC's "Shoot To Thrill" whenever he's making a big entrance and was seen throughout much of The Avengers wearing a Black Sabbath T-shirt.
- Badass: With or without the suit, Tony is a kick-ass hero.
- Badass Beard: More distinctive than his comic book counterpart's.
- Badass Bookworm: Incredibly intelligent, and is a badass, with and without the "Iron Man" armor.
- Badass Mustache: He's notably one of the few mainstream heroes in comics or movies that regularly sports a mustache.
- Badass Normal: Tony does well against Iron Monger during the end of Iron Man while suffering with a malfunctioning and offline armor, and is able to do well against Vanko without his armor during the raceway attack in 2. When without a suit in part of 3, he shows he's been practicing martial arts. He's like James Bond, but making his own gadgets.
- Bad Dreams: By Iron Man 3, his experiences during The Avengers have shaken him up and given him these, resulting in a hard time sleeping in general.
- Bash Brothers:
- With War Machine his best friend.
- With Captain America after earning each other's respect through fighting side by side. Steve represents the idealism and nobility that Tony has since lost, but deep down still respects and wishes to have again.
- Bigger Stick: Claims to be America's Big Stick in Iron Man 2 and stopping others from abusing his sticks is a recurring problem for him.
- Breakout Character: Pretty fits. Before the movies came out, he was being shifted into the background. He was still a mainline superhero in the Marvel Universe, but people wanted to see everyone else more. Then the movies came out, and suddenly Iron Man is one of the biggest things ever — to the point that he overshadows Spider-Man in popularity these days. Also, he initially wasn't very popular for people who live in the country where Marvel comics aren't widely published. After the movies came out, even non-Marvel comics fans love him.
- Brilliant but Lazy: Implied to be this pre-Character Development in the first film. He sure built that arc reactor pretty quickly once he needed it and was said by Obadiah Stane to be more of an "idea man". He's more hard working but quite hedonistic.
- Brought Down to Badass: Partway through the third movie, he loses a lot of his technology. Then he proves he doesn't need it. He is Iron Man.
- Bully Hunter: After his time with Yinsen, Tony became royally fed-up with watching decent people suffering by the thousands every day, flew to Afghanistan, and did something about it. He would never ever admit it, but in this respect he's Not So Different from Steve Rogers.
- But for Me, It Was Tuesday: Played for drama. He's utterly horrified to find out that Killian is none other than the man whom he played a cruel joke on back in the 1999 New Years Eve party.
- Butt Monkey: In The Avengers. A great deal of the humor in the various action sequences involve him first being genuinely badass, but then casually getting the shit kicked out of him (once by an inanimate propeller) because he A) is incredibly smart-alecky and boastful, and getting smacked around stops him from coming off as annoying, and B) wears a suit of Powered Armor, so getting the shit kicked out of him doesn't hurt anything but his pride.
- Byronic Hero: Every single characteristic save for the brooding — unless you catch him in a downbeat moment.
- The Cameo: Has one at the end of The Incredible Hulk.
- The Casanova: In Iron Man 1 and 2. By the time of The Avengers however, he's in a monogamous relationship with Pepper.
: Is it true that you went twelve-for-twelve with last year's Maxim cover models? Tony Stark
: That is an excellent question. Yes and no
. March and I had a scheduling conflict but fortunately the Christmas cover was twins
- Character Title/Protagonist Title: Of his own films.
- Chest Blaster: It drains more power than the palm blasters, so he mainly uses it as a backup weapon (unless he's blowing stuff up for laughs while hammered).
- Child Prodigy: A former one. It's mentioned he built his first AI at the age of seven.
- Cloud Cuckoolander: He certainly has some rather...eccentric behaviors.
- Comes Great Responsibility: After his switch to The Atoner, Tony is perfectly willing to wield the power of his money, fame, and genius for the greater good.
- Comically Missing the Point: A few times, he does this and mostly on purpose. For instance, his thoughts on being called the Da Vinci of our time...
Absolutely ridiculous, I don't paint.
- Composite Character: This version of Tony Stark blends the serious demeanor of his 616 counterpart with the more playful billionaire personality of his Ultimate universe counterpart.
- Crazy-Prepared: Played with. It's demonstrated that Tony builds his suits with contingencies in mind, and newer versions improve on the flaws of the last model; The Mk 42 would've been a Lightning Bruiser if it worked right. Yet, Tony seems almost unable to simply have spares of important equipment when he needs it note . The only exception is The Avengers where not only has the Mk 6 been upgraded to have more weapons, bur he had the Mk 7 to replace the Mk 6.
- Create Your Own Villain: Tony admits to doing this in the opening narration of Iron Man 3. Specifically, it's his cruel joke back in 1999 that sets Killian on his Start of Darkness.
- Cursed with Awesome:
- By The Avengers, this is how Tony Stark has come to view the electromagnet and the miniature arc reactor that are plugged into his chest 24/7 and are the only things keeping him alive. He spends a good deal of the film trying to convince Bruce Banner that the Hulk is a similarly awesome curse.
Tony: It's a terrible...privilege.
- This is proven true later in the The Avengers when it's shown that the reactor basically makes Tony the only person unable to be controlled by Loki's scepter because it cuts direct access to his heart.
- Cutting the Knot: When challenged by Steve Rogers in The Avengers over his worldview and his unwillingness to make the sacrifice play when the chips are down, he defends himself thusly. The climax of the film sees him outgrowing this and understanding the lengths at which a real hero must go.
- Cyborg: First, we have his Arc Reactor pacemaker. Following New York, Tony's post-traumatic stress disorder leads him to build 35 additional Powered Armor suits, with subdermal implants in his arm allowing him to control the 42nd overall armor remotely piece-by-piece to pull them to him or put them on another user. Given that he has surgery to remove the "walking death" shrapnel from his chest, throws his reactor into the ocean and blows up the entire Iron Legion of his remaining armors (which could be controlled by J.A.R.V.I.S.), it's quite likely he gets rid of the implants as well at the end of Iron Man 3.
- The Cynic:
- Which is why he finds Steve Rogers' "outdated and irrelevant" idealism annoying.
- He also defaults to this whenever he's emotionally affected by something and wants to pretend it didn't hurt him, such as his reaction to Natasha's assessment of him regarding the Avengers Initiative, or feebly trying to dismiss Coulson as an idiot for taking on a god and getting killed for his efforts.
- Deadpan Snarker: About ninety-eight percent of his dialogue is sarcasm.
- Despair Event Horizon: Comes reeeeaaaally close to it in Iron Man 3, after Pepper apparently dies. He can't even emote properly. Thankfully, she lives.
- Didn't Think This Through: Tony's "run before you can walk" philosophy has mixed results. His first flight test nearly kills him, though confronting the icing problem helps against Iron Monger's untested suit. Telling the Mandarin "here's my home address, come and have a go" was a bit much even for him.
- Did We Just Have Tea with Cthulhu?: Offered Loki a drink in The Avengers. Considering Loki is considered an alien god, it comes off as this.
- Disability Superpower: The arc reactor that powers Tony's Powered Armor is installed in Tony's chest in the first place as (to oversimplify) a very fancy pacemaker. Remove the arc reactor and Tony's heart will very quickly give out. He finally gets the shrapnel removed in Iron Man 3.
- Disproportionate Retribution: While captured in Iron Man 3, he taunts a guard with this after the guard breaks his borrowed "deluxe Dora the Explorer" watch. "Just for that, I'm going to kill you first."
- Fanboy / The Knights Who Say Squee: to Bruce Banner as seen in their first meet in The Avengers. Including but not limited to the way Bruce Banner loses control and turns into enormous green rage monster.
- Fiction 500:
- Forget the private jet that turns into a nightclub with flight attendants who double as exotic dancers. He has the personal resources and completely automated production facility to build a fully functional Iron Man suit in five hours in his garage.
- As of Iron Man 2, said garage now contains a miniature, personal Hadron Collider.
- The Avengers has him kicking it up a notch, having bought the MetLife building and given it some drastic upgrades: he completely cut it off from the city's electrical grid, equipped it with 10 stories of R&D, gave it the capability to both manufacture the Iron Man armor and remove it from Tony while he enters his apartment, and chopped the top off to rebuild it as what can only be described as a fantastic display of ego.
- In 2012, Mr. Tony Stark ranks #5 on Forbes' Fictional 15, with a net worth of $9.3 billion.
- Foil: To Steve Rogers, playing the selfish cynic to Steve's old-fashioned idealist. For example, while both are shown to be dolls of the public (featured at big show events complete with dancing girls), Steve is made visibly uncomfortable with the spotlight and would rather be on the front lines whereas Tony eats up the attention.
- The Friend Nobody Likes: To the other Avengers in the team. They either find him irritating or selfish. Bruce Banner is the first to warm up to him, but that's because he's irritating (and nobody has dared to treat Bruce Banner as a normal guy you can irritate in a long time.)
- The Gadfly / Troll: Depends on what mood you catch him in.
- Tony has an unfortunate habit of using sarcastic humor as an ice-breaker in interpersonal relationships, most tellingly in his tendency to give everybody goofy nicknames and being absolutely fine about openly and lightly discussing personal trauma, such as with Captain America's 70 year freeze and how he's a fan of the way Bruce Banner "turns into an enormous green rage-monster."
- Him poking Bruce with a cattle prod stands out as a fine example but Bruce found it funny. They're both scientists; little lab pranks like that happen all the time).
- Gadgeteer Genius: When pushed, he can revolutionise Arc Reactor technology IN A CAVE! WITH A BOX OF SCRAPS!, as well as build his own personal Hadron Collider by seemingly nothing more than rewiring his own home.
- Generation Xerox: Of his father, Howard Stark. Genius inventor in the arms industry that gets involved in a war and becomes cynical as a result.
- Good Is Not Nice: Yes, he's willing to work hard to keep the world safe, and his heart is in the right place but he's also still a playboy, a glory hound, and an irresponsible narcissist a lot of the time. That said, he is trying to be better.
- Heroes Want Redheads: His relationship with Pepper.
- Heroic Self-Deprecation: As of Iron Man 3, he's very aware of how flawed he is. Hilariously so.
Pepper: Well now I see why you work with the suits so much...god, what am I going to complain about now?
Tony: It's me, there's always something to complain about.
Pepper: I am gonna be okay?
Tony: You're in a relationship with me, everything will never be okay.
- Heterosexual Life-Partners: With Rhodey; he's one of two people that he trusts.
- Honest Corporate Executive: After he returned from Afghanistan and refused to allow his product to fall into evil hands.
- Hot Scientist: Just look at the page image. There's a reason there are several scenes of him in tank tops.
- Hidden Heart of Gold: Oh, he cares about people and wants to make the world a better place, no doubt. Just don't expect him to ever admit it.
- Insufferable Genius: Snubs an award ceremony for technological brillance and then gives away the award like it's junk.
- Insult Backfire: Initially he likes the title "Merchant of Death" but quickly comes to despise it.
- Intergenerational Friendship: He briefly become friends with the notably older Yinsen. He also befriends a boy named Harley in Iron Man 3 who proves to be quite a useful Kid Sidekick.
- It's All About Me: He gets called out on this quite often and with good cause.
Tony: (Referring to the newly lit Stark Tower) [It's] like Christmas, but with more...me.
- Jerk with a Heart of Gold: While Tony can be a narcissist who's a bit of a showoff, his heart's in the right place and he works hard to make the world better. By The Avengers, he's also indulging in shockingly open and extravagant displays of compassion and thoughtfulness in between smug, self-aggrandizing quips.
- Jerkass Façade: Implied at times to be his only way of dealing with his guilt and feelings of self-hatred and doubt.
- Jet Pack: On his Mark VII armor in The Avengers, to allow him to use both of his repulsors without having to use one to stay aloft in flight. It falls off into two engines into space when he loses power at the climax of The Avengers, but he can probably just replace it.
- Jumped at the Call: Tony may be living proof that becoming a hero can still be a lot of fun.
- Knight in Sour Armor: Tony marinates daily in cynicism and sarcasm before setting forth to bring world peace, protect the innocent, and mock the stupid.
- Kryptonite Factor: Although the Iron Man armors can withstand things ranging from tank shells to Thor's lightning, they are susceptible to heat intense enough to melt through them. This is why any of the Extremis fighters can almost fight on even ground with Tony.
- Ladykiller in Love: The first and second movies made it obvious that for all his Casanova tendencies, Tony was clearly in love with his long time Beleaguered Assistant Pepper Potts.
- The Lancer: In The Avengers as a direct foil to The Leader Captain America, and a egotistical Ace that doesn't value teamwork. He's also listed as the official Number Two (to Cap) of the team.
- Large Ham: As a man who believes the spotlight is always trained on him, it's a required trait.
- Incoming Ham: His arrival at the Stark Expo in the second movie, and appearing in Germany with guns blazing and hijacking SHIELD's audio systems to play ACDC in The Avengers.
- Laser-Guided Karma: Lampshades this in his narration of Iron Man 3, as his act of spurning Killian in 1999 bites him back in the ass.
Tony: We create our own demons.
- The Last Dance: In Iron Man 2 until he finds a replacement element for the palladium core of his arc reactor that was poisoning him.
- Let's Get Dangerous: Many people, both foes and allies, have assumed that Tony's Cloud Cuckoolander irreverence and Obfuscating Stupidity mean he's an Upper-Class Twit who can't take anything seriously, let alone pose a threat. These people were very wrong.
- Locking Macgyver In The Store Cupboard: How he built the Mark I Iron Man armor. It's a Invoked Trope; the Ten Rings asked him what he needed to build a Jericho Missile and Tony told them exactly what he needed.
- Lonely Rich Kid: He had no friends growing up in his swank boarding school. Later he grew up to be a Millionaire Playboy enjoying swank parties and seducing reporters.
- MacGyvering: His main ability when he's not inside his Iron Man suit. Other than building a Powered Armor with just scraps of metal, he can come up with weapons using whatever he has access to at the time.
- Man Child: At times Stark looks more like a child building with legos than an adult saving the world. Considering that he built his first AI at just seven, he really hasn't grown out of revolutionising technology by playing with toys!
- Meta Casting: Given Downey Jr.'s history with partying and drugs — plus snarky characters — he was made for the role......except for his height. The comics Tony Stark is 6 inches taller than him, and Downey is shorter than everyone in the MCU aside from Scarlett Johansson (hence tricks to make him look taller). It memed.
- Motor Mouth: The man never shuts up. Pepper has the singular ability to hold a conversation with him by talking right over him without pause and listening at the same time, otherwise she'd never get a word in edgewise.
- Narcissist: "Textbook...narcissism?" (sees Fury's expression) "Agreed."
- The Nicknamer: One of the indicators of his generally flippant attitude is his tendency to toss off casual and frequently pop-culture-laden nicknames for people and objects — "Old Man" and "Capsicle" for Captain America, "Point Break" for Thor, "Legolas" for Hawkeye, "Reindeer Games" (due to the horns on his helmet) and "Rock of Ages" for Loki and "Glowstick of Destiny" for Loki's scepter, plus many more for people whose names he either doesn't know or doesn't care about (such as calling a random henchman "Ponytail Express" in Iron Man 3.
- Ninja Pirate Zombie Robot: He is, in his own words, a "genius billionaire playboy philanthropist" with a suit of Powered Armor.
- No Kill Like Overkill: He favors this for his combat tactics also the case with the arc reactor in his chest. 3 Gigajoules per second is a power output roughly on par with a nuclear power plant, and he essentially made it to power a pacemaker. Keep in mind that's the prototype, and he has upgraded it at least twice.
- Not So Different: To Loki in The Avengers, much to his chagrin.
...And Loki, he's a full-tilt diva! He wants flowers, he wants parades, he wants a monument built to the skies with his name plastered— (realises he's describing Stark Tower and in turn, himself) Tony: Sonofabitch
- No Sell: Thanks to the reactor cutting off direct access to his heart, Loki cannot mind control him.
- Not Staying for Breakfast: In both the first and third movies. The earlier has the weird condition of Christine being left alone at Tony's house.
- Obfuscating Stupidity: He often acts absent-minded, easily-distracted, and excessively self-obsessed and arrogant, but is shown to be incredibly brilliant socially and technically, delivering sarcastic putdowns to people who irritate him and building incredible machines out of whatever he has on hand. After one night of study, he becomes enough of an expert in thermonuclear astrophysics to discuss the specifics of the Tesseract with Bruce Banner.
- Odd Friendship: With Bruce Banner in The Avengers, due to them being the resident science geeks.
Tony: Finally, somebody who speaks English!
- Omnidisciplinary Scientist:
- He seems to be an expert at high-energy physics, materials science, and aerospace engineering all at the same time. His in-universe nickname was "the Da Vinci of our time" but Tony doesn't think so because he doesn't paint. Granted, he does have an AI to help him.
- He's a quick study. After spending a night reading S.H.I.E.L.D.'s briefing packet, he can converse fluently with Nick Fury, Bruce Banner and the rest of the Avengers about the technical details of the Tesseract.
- Once an Episode: Tony's introductory scenes are accompanied by an AC/DC song: "Back in Black" in the first film, "Shoot to Thrill" in Iron Man 2 as well as The Avengers, and "Let There Be Rock" in the Fury's Big Week comic.
- One-Man Army: As the baby-killing garbage of the Ten Rings found out the hard-and-painful way.
- Parental Abandonment: Tony complains that his dad was cold, never around for him, and he seriously doubted that his father even loved him at all. This is eventually shown not to be the case.
- Playful Hacker: Among other things, he enjoys hacking other people's sound systems to play appropriate music for his dramatic entrances. In 2 he gleefully hacks a live senate broadcast and several military satellites just to prove a point.
- Poor Communication Kills: Tony's not very good at talking to other people about his problems, which leaves everyone around him confused and irritated by his strange behavior while he does things like build a suit of Powered Armor in his basement or slowly die of palladium poisoning. However, by the time of the third film he's getting much better, coming right out and telling Pepper that he's got problems when they start to affect her directly. He's also pretty open to Harley about anxiety attacks.
- The Pornomancer: He's the page image for a reason but he stops becoming this by the time he's in a committed relationship with Pepper Potts.
- Powered Armor: Has made 42 of them by the beginning of Iron Man 3.
- Power Palms: Repulsors, his main weapons, are fired from the palms of his armor's gauntlets.
- Really Gets Around: There's Maya Hansen, Christine Everhart and Pepper, plus the offscreen twelve models. That we know of...
- Relationship Upgrade: To Official Couple with Pepper as of the end of Iron Man 2.
- Retired Badass: By the end of Iron Man 3, Tony decides that being with Pepper is more important then being Iron Man, going so far as to blow up his entire arsenal of armored suits.
- Running Gag:
- Does not like being handed things.
- He's technically not an Avenger. He's a consultant.
- Sad Clown: At the end of Avengers, he laughs off his near death experience and starts babbling about the Kiss of Life and shawarma. By 3, the adrenaline's worn off and he's suffering from PTSD due to the events of Avengers.
- Science Hero/Action Hero: He makes powered armor and then he kicks ass wearing it.
- Shell-Shocked Veteran: His near-death experience at the end of The Avengers has caused him nightmares, anxiety attacks, and a case of PTSD in Iron Man 3.
- Shipper on Deck: After his Relationship Upgrade with Pepper he apparently wants to see everyone else happily paired off as well; notably in The Avengers, when he offers Agent Coulson the use of his private jet to go and visit his girlfriend, who's just moved to a new city. "You gotta keep the love alive."
- Smart People Build Robots: He's created one incredibly advanced AI, JARVIS, and at least one other robot —Dummy— who makes up in loyalty and charm what it may lack in sophistication. All of Tony's bots have personality.
- Technological Pacifist:
- Tony gradually becomes one through the first movie and is firmly seated in this trope by the end of it. He really does not want the government or military to get a hold of his technology by Iron Man 2, specifically because he believes far more lives will be saved if his suits are never mass-manufactured or used in wars. That being said, he's willing to kill people if necessary.
- This continues in Avengers, where he is livid that SHIELD wants to create weapons based on the Tesseract, and in Iron Man 3, where Pepper's reasoning for turning down Killian is that Tony would not approve of how easily the technology could be weaponized.
- Teeth-Clenched Teamwork: Tony doesn't like Steve, at all, but there's nothing like a battle to forge a friendship.
- "The Reason You Suck" Speech:
- Tony gives one to Loki in The Avengers, telling him that there's no way there's any scenario that ends with him victorious, because he pissed off a bunch of people who'll fight until the end to beat him.
- Tony gives one of these to Maya in Iron Man 3, calling her out on compromising her moral integrity for progress.
- Took a Level in Badass: Between The Avengers and Iron Man 3 Tony seems to have taken Captain America's question about what he is without his armor seriously, since he can now handle himself in a fight without the armor and pulls off a successful infiltration of the Mandarin's mansion through McGyver'ed gadgets made out of things he found at a home supply store. Although he may have gotten a start on this in Iron Man 2, where it's implied that he's at least dabbling in some informal martial-arts training with his head of security.
- Took a Level in Kindness: After his experience in Afghanistan, he realizes how important he is to the rest of the world. It should be noted that as a Jerk with a Heart of Gold, he's still arrogant.
- Trickster Mentor: To Bruce Banner in The Avengers. He pokes him with a cattle-prod to test how he'd react, then comments that Bruce is wrong to deny the part of him that is the Hulk, noting that the amount of gamma radiation exposure he endured would have killed anyone else. Much like Yinsen stopping the shrapnel from reaching his own heart, he believes that Bruce was kept alive for a reason.
- Uncle Pennybags: We're looking at the guy who gave $100 to a guy for a small box of strawberries in 2, and told the aforementioned strawberry salesman to keep the change.
- Weaponized Exhaust: His primary weapon, the repulsor, wasn't designed to be a weapon, but rather a flight stabilizer. When he realized it worked as a weapon at full power, he incorporated it.
- "Well Done, Son!" Guy: Tony's relationship with his father was strained, at best. This extends to his relationship with Captain America, whom Howard Stark talked about a lot, making Cap into the big brother Tony could never hope to live up to.
- The Wonka: CEO of Stark Industries that has rather strange behavior, such as building AIs that snark back at him. It's easy to see how Pepper and Rhodes get exasperated with him.
- Workaholic: If it wasn't for Pepper, Jarvis, and Rhodey, Tony would've starved, blown himself up or overdosed on caffeine down in his workshop years ago. This goes Up to Eleven in Iron Man 3, where he spends more and more time in his lab to cope with his PTSD and Bad Dreams. He's apparently completed at least 30 different Iron Man weapons in the space of six months.
Virginia "Pepper" Potts
Virginia "Pepper" Potts
Tony Stark's faithful personal assistant, later CEO of Stark Industries, and eventually his Love Interest
Obadiah Stane / Iron Monger
Obadiah Stane / Iron Monger
Click here to see the Iron Monger suit
The CEO of Stark Industries, taking over after his friend Howard Stark died. His friendly image hides an amoral and sinister mind who seeks to use the Iron Man armor for his own ends.
- Affably Evil:
- Stane is a ruthless arms deal who double deals and initiates a coup against Tony with the board of directors to lock him out of the company. On the other hand, he's a jovial wise-cracker who brings Tony pizza from New York (Tony lives in Malibu) and rides around on a Segway.
- In a deleted scene he tells the scientists working on the Iron Monger suit that he's appreciative of their efforts but they need to work harder. He then delivers a speech declaring that technology the level of what Tony has created only comes once a generation, and it is their duty to discover its secrets and make sure the right people have access to them for the good of civilization. He may have just been lying to motivate them, but it at least indicates Stane considers himself a Well-Intentioned Extremist Anti-Villain.
- Arm Cannon: The Iron Monger suit has a minigun mounted on the right forearm.
- Bald of Evil: Jeff Bridges was reported to be looking forward to shaving his head to portray Stane with this.
- Beard of Evil: A well groomed one, in contrast to Tony's goatee.
- Big Bad Friend: He's something like Tony's Honorary Uncle in the first film and plotted to have him killed.
- Black Market: His source of income is selling weapons to anyone with the money for them. His plot to have Tony killed is so he can engage in his dealings without someone watching over his shoulder.
- Bond Villain Stupidity:
- Not cleaning out his inbox, for a start.
- Leaving Tony alone to anguish and die without his heart. (Though admittedly, Stane barely had enough time to do a victory jig as Coulson and Pepper were rapidly closing in.)
- Car Fu: Tries to crush Tony under an SUV. When that fails, he grabs a motorcycle and bats him away with it.
- The Chessmaster: Orchestrated the hit on Tony in Afganistan and later locks him out of the company to continue his Evil Plan.
- Chewing the Scenery: Just that memetic line he delivered in the movie. (See Large Ham entry)
- Chronic Backstabbing Disorder: Everyone he works with will eventually find themselves paralyzed and their stuff stolen.
Harold "Happy" Hogan
Harold "Happy" Hogan
Tony Stark's loyal bodyguard and chauffeur, and eventually promoted to head of security at Stark Industries by the events of Iron Man 3
An extremely advanced AI developed by Tony Stark . Jarvis assists Tony in just about everything the billionaire develops, has complete functional control of various terminals and robots Tony owns, and in a lot of ways is
Tony's house. Jarvis also serves as the operating system for the Iron Man suit through an up-link, essentially making him the other half of Iron Man.
- Adaptation Distillation: The "Tony's A.I. butler" concept dates back to the 90's Iron Man cartoon. So he goes through two alternate media before making his way to the comic books.
- A.I. Is a Crapshoot: Averted. Not only is Jarvis both competent and eloquent, he's constantly having back and forth banter with Tony.
- A.I. Roulette: One of his robots (supposedly, Tony's first) is incredibly incompetent. Tony describes it as a "tragedy."
- Animated Armor: In a pinch, he can take direct control of Tony's armor. During the climax of Iron Man 3, Jarvis controls most of Tony's suits on his own; since Tony isn't wearing them or controlling them directly, they speak and behave with Jarvis' own voice and personality.
- Benevolent A.I.: During the climax of Avengers, he offers to call Pepper, an act that has no tangible benefit except comforting Tony during what could be his last moments.
- British Stuffiness/The Jeeves: He's basically a digital British butler.
- Canon Immigrant: Eventually his popularity got him into the comics.
- Dead Guy Junior: Revealed in the canon tie-in comics: J.A.R.V.I.S. is named and programmed after the personality/voice of a once real-life Jarvis that served the Stark family when Tony was a child. note Tony privately admits that the human Jarvis was the only one who was ever really there for him growing up.
- Deadpan Snarker:
[shows Tony a gold Mark III render]
Tony: A little ostentatious, don't you think?
Jarvis: What was I thinking? You're usually so discreet.
Tony Stark: Tell you what, throw a little hotrod red in there.
Jarvis: Yes, that should help you keep a low profile.
- Fun with Acronyms: His name stands for "Just A Rather Very Intelligent System".
- Gadgeteer Genius: He's a computer AI, fully capable of engineering components himself and carrying out other complex tasks.
- Hive Mind: Whenever he's controlling robots directly, they all function as one entity, even speaking in unison at one point. He's even able to operate forty of Tony's Iron Man armors at once.
- Master Computer: J.A.R.V.I.S. assists in just about every aspect of Tony's life. Averted in that J.A.R.V.I.S. is generally nice and compliant, albeit sarcastic as hell and prone to questioning his creator's more reckless stunts.
- Mythology Gag: The name references Edwin Jarvis, the Avengers' butler in the comics.
- Nice Guy: Fiercely loyal to Tony, as shown when he asks him if he'd like to call Pepper before heading for what looks like certain death.
- Servile Snarker: He's quite sarcastic, no doubt about it, but he's loyal to Tony nonetheless.
- Shipper on Deck: For Tony and Pepper. When Tony is apparently about to die in The Avengers, it's J.A.R.V.I.S. who suggests that he call Pepper to say goodbye.
- Took a Level in Badass: In the third movie, Tony gets J.A.R.V.I.S. to operate an entire legion of Iron Man armors. Being unmanned drones, they fall pretty easily, but still, they do damn well, and only fall when Extremis soldiers dogpile them.
- Better, actually, those suits have their own advantages for being unmanned Animated Armor, thus reducing the disadvantage of their Conservation of Ninjutsu status. Their parts can be detached and re-attached at J.A.R.V.I.S.'s will anytime. Heck, they can still move and kick asses even after some of them are beheaded!
United States Government and Military
James "Rhodey" Rhodes (War Machine / Iron Patriot)
USAF Lieutenant Colonel/Colonel James "Rhodey" Rhodes (War Machine / Iron Patriot)
Click here to see the War Machine suit
Click here to see the Iron Patriot suit
Portrayed By: Terrence Howard, Don Cheadle (pictured right)
Tony Stark's best friend, and military liaison to Stark Industries. Uses a modified version of Iron Man's Powered Armor
as War Machine.
- Adaptational Heroism: Not Rhodey himself because he's a hero in the comics. This trope applies only to the Iron Patriot Armor. In the comics, it was originally used by Norman Osborn, a supervillain who was at best a Knight Templar.
- American Robot/Captain Patriotic: His new "Iron Patriot" paintjob in Iron Man 3. Despite being based on a villain's look in the comics, here it just plays up his Military Superhero status.
- Appropriated Appellation: After Tony insults his armor by calling it a "war machine" in Iron Man 2, Rhodey takes to calling his armor that himself. Tony notes in the tie-in comic to Iron Man 3 that he meant it as an insult.
- Badass: Self-identified. "It's called 'being a badass'."
- Badass Normal: Like Tony.
- BFG: Tony seems to think he's compensating for something. Rhodey's reply is "It's called being a badass."
- Bald of Awesome: Only the Don Cheadle version.
- Bash Brothers: With Iron Man and highlighted at the end of 2.
- Black Best Friend: Tony's Only Friend is him. Everyone else that he spends any time with works for him or was made by him.
- Brought Down to Badass: In 3. He's stripped of his suit, and winds up on an oil tanker armed with only a pistol against Extremis-empowered soldiers. He proceeds to go and get his suit back and rescue the President.
- Canon Immigrant: Again, not Rhodey himself, but his version of Iron Patriot. It's migrated into mainstream Marvel Universe after Iron Man 3.
- Can't Hold His Liquor: Sucks at avoiding temptation and gets drunk much faster than Tony.
- Cloud Cuckoolanders Minder: "That's why I have to be your babysitter. You need your diaper changed, I'll get you a bottle." As much as he complains, he truly cares about Tony.
- Colonel Badass: Lieutenant-Colonel, to be precise.
- Deadpan Snarker: The only way to interact with Tony. "How was the Fun-Vee?"
- Distressed Dude: Both sequels involve the War Machine/Iron Patriot armor being captured or hijacked by the main villains.
- Fail O'Suckyname: Tony isn't impressed by the new name, and Rhodey ultimately admits he liked War Machine better.
- Gatling Good: Shoulder-mounted and auto-targeting.
- Heterosexual Life-Partners: Rhodey is one of the very few people Tony truly trusts, and he's always trying his hardest to keep Tony from hurting himself.
- Humans Are Warriors: He likes talking about the soldier community: "They've got my back....and I've got theirs."
- Improbable Aiming Skills: In 3, he nails several difficult shots with a pistol, including a distant light and some cables.
- The Lancer: Serves as a foil to Tony. He's humble, responsible, and follows orders.
- Meaningful Rename: His superhero moniker is changed from "War Machine" to "Iron Patriot" in the face of the Mandarin terror threat.
- Military Superhero: Lieutenant-Colonel of the US Air Force and War Machine.
- Moment Killer: To Tony and Pepper at the end of Iron Man 2. To be fair, he was sitting right there and they didn't bother to check.
- More Dakka: War Machine has five different kinds of guns.
- My Master, Right or Wrong: Downplayed for a funny moment. He thinks "Iron Patriot" is stupid like everyone else, but his superiors approved it so he goes along with it.
- Not So Above It All: He tries very hard to be the responsible adult around Tony. It's not as easy as one might think.
- Not So Stoic: When he's with Tony, he's a bit more livid, like if Tony's gotten him a bit drunk, gets angry with Tony, or dons the War Machine armor, especially during the final battles and the finale of Iron Man 2.
- Only Sane Man: One of two in Tony's life. The other one is Pepper.
- Powered Armor: His piece was originally the Mark 2, the first flight-capable suit Tony made after returning from captivity. Rhodes confiscates it from Tony and gets it upgraded by Justin Hammer in Iron Man 2.
- Shipper on Deck: The Iron Man 3 prequel comic mentions how thrilled he is that Pepper is moving in with Tony.
- Shoulder Cannon: It's a big gun, but not the big gun.
- The Stoic: When he's with his co-workers, he's calm and focused.
"My priority is to get the Iron Man weapon turned over to the people of the United States of America."
Portrayed By: Garry Shandling
A United States Senator who tries unsuccessfully to get Tony Stark to provide Iron Man suits for the military. He makes a cameo appearance in Captain America: The Winter Soldier
- Canon Foreigner: Was created specifically for Iron Man 2, and thus has no comic book equivalent.
- Cerebus Callback: His appearance in Iron Man 2 becomes one after the events of Captain America: The Winter Soldier. It is entirely possible that the reason why the government wanted Tony's Iron Man armor was because of Stern's allegiance to HYDRA.
- Corrupt Politician: He's an undercover HYDRA member.
- Dirty Old Man: When speaking to Sitwell in The Winter Soldier, he mentions a constituent he works with, describing her as "really hot, wants to be a reporter, but who listens by that point?"
- Jerkass Has a Point: While he's a jerk about it, its hard to argue that he's wrong to be worried about leaving technology as sophisticated and dangerous as the Iron Man suits in the hands of a Manchild like Tony Stark. Granted, he probably wanted it for HYDRA, but that doesn't actually disprove his point.
- Kick the Son of a Bitch: When he's roped into giving Tony and Rhodey medals for stopping Ivan Vanko, he deliberately messes up pinning Tony's medal so that it jabs him at the same time. Pretty mean but, as he puts it, Tony had been "a little prick" to him, so it's getting even.
- Obstructive Bureaucrat: He's a Senator who tries forcing Tony Stark back into weapons contracting.
- No Party Given: We never learn if he's Republican, Democrat, or an independent. His real allegiance turns out to be HYDRA.
- Properly Paranoid: Stern feels the suits should granted to the US so they can defend against enemy ones, but Tony assures him that there's no danger of rival armor suits to counter his, and that all attempts are decades behind. However, Ivan Vanko soon arrives to provide some doubts about that. Downplayed when it turns out that he works for HYDRA, meaning he was an enemy himself all along.
- Shout-Out: His name is a reference to Howard Stern, who heavily promoted the first Iron Man film on his radio show, even interviewing director and casual friend Jon Favreau.
- Stealth Insult: To Tony: "Funny how annoying a little prick can be."
President Matthew Ellis
President Matthew Ellis
"You elected me on a single platform: I will defend this country at all cost."
Portrayed By: William Sadler
The President of the United States. As part of his personal vow of protecting America from all threats, President Ellis decides to take a proactive approach in dealing with the Mandarin and the Ten Rings organization, particularly by rechristening Lt. Col. James Rhodes as the Iron Patriot.
- Defiant to the End: Even when threatened by Savin wearing the Iron Patriot armor, Ellis doesn't cower and instead tries to pull a gun in the face of his situation.
- The Ghost: Although he is seen on video for the Captain America exhibit in the Smithsonian Institution, he is still unseen entirely in both Captain America: The Winter Soldier and Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.. The former more so when HYDRA targets him and other during Project: Insight.
- Hoist by His Own Petard: What Killian tries to invoke by having President Ellis die in the suit of armor that the President commissioned for Rhodes while set on fire by oil.
- The Leader: He's the leader of the USA. Based on what we see of him, he cuts a Charismatic type figure.
- Our Presidents Are Different: He's President Personable, who later becomes President Target by Killian. Likely would have become President Action given he was wearing the Iron Patriot armor, but never got a chance to use it.
- Becomes President Target again when HYDRA starts Project: Insight.
- His name is likely one to Warren Ellis, who wrote the Extremis arc that the film takes inspiration from.
- "Ellis" is also the middle name of Jeb Bush, former governor of Florida, possible 2016 presidential candidate, and son and brother, respectively, of former Presidents George H.W. Bush and George W. Bush. The actor is made up to resemble Bush son.
Vice President Rodriguez
Vice President Rodriguez
Portrayed By: Miguel Ferrer
The Vice President of the United States. Rhodey and Stark hear him mentioned in Killian's evil plan, and call Rodriguez to warn him that he's a target. However, it turns out Rodriguez is actually not just in on the plot, but part of it.
- Bald of Evil: Once his true colors are revealed.
- Dragon-in-Chief: Once he becomes President he'll still technically answer to Killian, making him the real leader.
- Even Evil Has Loved Ones: Working to have his daughter's leg regenerated.
- Karma Houdini: Averted. An ending montage shows him being arrested, along with other accomplices of AIM.
- Number Two: He's the second in command of the USA.
- President Evil: He's working with Killian to kill the president, in order to have his daughter's leg regenerated.
- The Starscream: The plan is for President Ellis to be killed and Vice President Rodriguez to take his place.
- Traitor Shot: Once he was finished talking with Rhodes and Stark, another man asked if something was wrong, leading to the above tropes.
- Walking Spoiler: There's really no way to talk about him without spoiling his morality, since he doesn't show up at all until that particular reveal.
Hammer Advanced Weapons Systems
Ivan Vanko / Whiplash
Ivan Vanko / Whiplash
Click here to see the Whiplash Mk II suit
"If you could make God bleed, people would cease to believe in Him. There will be blood in the water. The sharks will come."
Portrayed By: Mickey Rourke
Son of Anton Vanko, a former partner of Howard Stark, who forced his father's exile to Siberia, and a subsequently miserable life turned him to revenge against Howard's son Tony.
- Affably Evil: Vanko's shown to be a pretty nice guy as long as you're on his good side, and even if you aren't, he isn't above some polite conversation.
- Badass: Implied to be a fearsome guy in his past (Mafiya tatoos and all) and then he goes to give Iron Man a run for his money.
- Badass Normal: Electro-whips aside, Vanko's just a normal guy fighting true Powered Armor. Until his second suit, which is indeed Powered Armor and much stronger than Tony's and Rhodey's.
- Big Bad: In Iron Man 2,he's the major threat and the one pulling the strings but he's content to let Hammer think he's just an underling.
- Canon Immigrant: Vanko's version of Whiplash is later migrated into mainstream Marvel comics universe.
- Clothes Make the Superman: He provides the page image.
- Composite Character: Of Whiplash (the whips) and Crimson Dynamo (the Powered Armor, being Russian, and his name).
- Cut Lex Luthor a Check: Discussed Trope; Tony asks why he didn't take his arc reactor, inferior to his but still functional, to an enemy nation or the black market and make a fortune. He also could have lived a comfortable life on Hammer's dollar with the quality of work he was providing. In both cases, he preferred using his talents to get revenge on Tony instead of making money.
- Driven to Suicide: Unable to kill Tony and wounded by him, he actives the self-destruct device inside his Whiplash Power Armor and other Hammer Drones, gloating to Tony, "You lose." while he laughed.
- Evil Counterpart: He built a miniature arc reactor out of scraps and used it to power weapons that gave Iron Man a good run for his money. The novelization even has Tony note that if their fathers had been in reversed positions and it was Howard who was deported and left to descend into drunken depression, Tony might have ended up just like Vanko.
- Evil Plan: "What your family did to mine in forty years, I will do to you in forty minutes."
- Flunky Boss: Hacks War Machine and the "Hammeroids", sending them against Tony before he finally takes him on personally.
- Genius Bruiser: One of two people capable of making arc reactor technology and then used it to make his own Powered Armor.
- Good Scars, Evil Scars: Has the traditional scar down his eye.
- Green-Eyed Monster: Firmly believes (and not without some measure of justification) that he should have and could have been where Tony is now, if not for Howard Stark screwing his father.
- Large Ham: Mickey Rourke is clearly enjoying himself, best represented by Vanko frequently breaking into a smug smile.
- Made of Iron: His harness apparently gives him a good degree of protection. Happy drives a car into him and Vanko is barely stunned, and after being flung through the air onto asphalt he's still conscious, if dazed and bleeding heavily.
- The Mafiya: If his tattoos are accurate, he's a member.
- Obfuscating Stupidity: He shows that he's both fluent and eloquent in his early face-to-face confrontation with Tony Stark, but speaks to Hammer in broken, barely intelligible English just to mess with him.
- Oral Fixation: His toothpick.
- Pet the Burd: In his only displays of kindness, he shows he likes cockatoos, even the one Hammer gets him in place of Vanko's own back in Russia.
- The Quiet One: Vanko is notably very quiet, especially when compared with Tony or Justin. In several of his most prominient scenes, Vanko says barely anything at all; during the climax, his only words are "Good to be back" and "You lose."
- Renegade Russian: Tried selling Soviet nuclear fuel on the black market at one point.
- Revenge Before Reason: Why he's not using his technology for practical purposes; he only wants revenge.
- Shock and Awe: His whips are charged with electricty.
- Sins of Our Fathers: Tony's, specifically.
- The Stoic: Vanko is extremely calm and collected, even when held in captivity or being scolded by his billionaire employer. When Hammer tells his guards to start taking Ivan's bird and other comforts away, you can see when he stops protesting and when he starts just going with it silently. It's like flicking a switch.
- Tattooed Crook: Displays tattoos that are common with Russian criminals.
- Tragic Villain: All his disdain for Tony's family is well-founded. His father was cut off from the project he helped start, was deported to a winter wasteland to die in a bitter swill of alcoholism and disgrace, and he himself got wrapped up in organized crime to make a living. Beneath his cold exterior is a genius mind that even Tony Stark is impressed by.
- Troll: He clearly enjoys antagonizing Hammer just for the sake of doing it, such as telling him the drones won't be ready for the expo presentation when they most definitely are.
- When All You Have Is a Hammer: His harness and later his Powered Armor aren't shown to have any on-board weapons like the Iron Man or War Machine armor, except for the whips. Vanko still overpowers both of them because the whips are just that effective. It makes sense. The Iron Man and War Machine armors are filled to the brim with ranged weaponry, most of which is explosive. Up close, they either miss, or hit and damage both Vanko and themselves. The whips bring the attacker in close and immobolize them while delivering an electric discharge to fry and mangle the armor.
- Whip It Good: It cuts real well too.
- Worthy Opponent: He believes Tony to be the only one worthy enough to talk straight to. Other times he is either silent or in Hammer's case pretending to be an incompetent, broken English speaking Cloud Cuckoo Lander. With Tony, he makes his intentions clear and even follows Tony's sarcastic advice when upgrading his weaponry.
"Mr. Stark has built a sword, yet he insists on using it as a shield!"
CEO of Hammer Industries, and a (self-perceived) rival of Tony Stark. He forges a temporary alliance with Ivan Vanko, but the latter just makes use of his resources - not taking him seriously at all. An all-around obnoxious loser.
- Adaptational Attractiveness: In the comics Hammer is much older, originally modelled after Peter Cushing.
- Adaptational Comic Relief: His comics counterpart is more cynical and his hatred of Tony Stark is much more apparent.
- Adaptation Displacement: After the film, most versions of Hammer show him being a young, arrogant, and incompetent inventor and businessman.
- Age Lift: His comics counterpart is much older.
- Ambiguously Gay: In the short film All Hail the King, Hammer has a new male sidekick who constantly follows him and strokes his shoulder. Hammer also talks about his "understanding" relationship with Tony that gives his jealousy a possible new meaning.
- Big Bad Wannabe: Thinks he's Tony's rival and is using Vanko to further his plans to show up Tony with the tech Vanko designs for him. The reality is the other way round.
- Cloud Cuckoolander: For all his villainous aspirations, he's just plain weird.
- Driven by Envy/Evil Is Petty: He has people killed just to get Vanko out so he can make his Hammerdrones, all for the sake of showing up Tony Stark.
- Evil Counterpart: Tries oh-so-hard to be this to Tony, only to fail spectacularly. It's really driven home during his display at the expo where he tries dancing his way onto the stage in an utterly feeble impersonation of Tony's showmanship to a very underwhelmed audience. Hilariously, when Tony shows up in the Iron Man armor, doing nothing more than coming in for a landing on the stage, the crowd goes wild.
- Evil Plan: Repeat: everything he does is for the sake of showing up Tony Stark.
- Green-Eyed Monster: Even though he's wealthy like Tony, he definitely envies Tony's talent and success. His technology throughout the film is described as a joke and a failed knock-off of Stark's. His jealousy is even shown when he's talking to Stark or mentioning him. Heck, most of his motivation in the film is to upstage Stark.
- Ignored Enemy: Despite his efforts, Tony barely acknowledges Hammer as a fellow industrialist, let alone a rival.
- Ineffectual Sympathetic Villain: His efforts at being either a respected businessman or a crafty villain are both such Epic Fail, it's hard not to feel sorry for the poor schmuck.
- Jerkass: One of the oilyest, most dickish characters in 21st century movies.
- Know-Nothing Know-It-All: He's not as smart as he makes himself out to be.
- Large Ham: Being an Evil Counterpart of Tony, he still needed to be a man full of himself. All Hail the King even has Hammer complaining about Slattery stealing the spotlight from him to — both represent how Evil Is Hammy, but Hammer does it without effort to overact!
- Made of Explodium:
- His "Ex-Wife" miniature bunker-buster projectile is supposedly extremely explosive. Emphasis on supposedly.
: These are the Cubans, baby. This is the Cohibas, the Montecristos. This is a kinetic-kill, side-winder vehicle with a secondary cyclotrimethylenetrinitramine RDX burst. It's capable of busting a bunker under the bunker you just busted. If it were any smarter, it'd write a book, a book that would make Ulysses look like it was written in crayon. It would read it to you. This is my Eiffel Tower. This is my Rachmaninoff's Third. My Pieta. It's completely elegant, it's bafflingly beautiful, and it's capable of reducing the population of any standing structure to zero. I call it "The Ex-Wife."
- It doesn't work at all. It almost makes you wonder if one of the scriptwriters recently had a nasty divorce.
- More Dakka: His armors and drones are equipped with massive ammunition. Tony lampshades it about Rhodey's War Machine armor that Hammer outfitted.
a big gun
, you aren't the
big gun. Rhodey:
Tony, don't be jealous. Tony:
No, it's subtle, all the bells and whistles. Rhodey:
Yeah, it's called being a Badass
- Motor Mouth: Often speaks in fast and rambling sentences.
- Never My Fault: As he's being dragged to jail for attempting to kill Tony Stark and allying himself with Vanko, he accuses Pepper Potts of ruining his career and reputation.
- Redemption Promotion: The Ex-Wife doesn't work in Iron Man 2. In the Iron Man 3 Prelude comic, an Ex-Wife is launched at War Machine and temporarily disables it. This is the one Tony made, not the Hammer-downgraded one. Looks like he had something on it after all.
- Smug Snake: He has the same ego as Tony, but none of the genius to back it up.
- Sweet Tooth: He's eating ice cream when he meets up with Ivan and sucking on a sucker while presenting weapons to Rhodes (pictured above).
- Unknown Rival: To Tony. It was emphasized thoroughly in the second film.
Advanced Idea Mechanics (A.I.M.)
Dr. Aldrich Killian
Dr. Aldrich Killian
"The whole world's going to be watching."
Killian runs a brain-trust organization called the Advanced Idea Mechanics that is developing Extremis, a chemical that can reprogram human DNA. With its abilities to regenerate limbs, enhance strength, and cure wounds, Killian intends to use it to change the world.
Dr. Maya Hansen
Dr. Maya Hansen
Portrayed By: Rebecca Hall
A scientist Tony Stark met (and slept with) in 1999. Her works with plants helped create Extremis.
Portrayed By: James Badge Dale
An Extremis-powered henchman working for Aldrich Killian.
- Adaptational Villainy: In the comics, he's the cybernetic Anti-Hero known as Coldblood. Here, he's Killian's second-in-command and enforcer.
- Badass: He's an ex-soldier who makes kicking the crap out of people look effortless.
- Bald of Evil: Notably, he's one of the only bald characters in 3, and sadistically cruel.
- Character Tics: Often chewing gum when wreaking havoc.
- The Dragon: Serves as the villainous Killian's right-hand man.
- Empowered Badass Normal: An ex-soldier turned Extremis supersoldier. Then he wears the Iron Patriot armor on top of it all.
- Faux Affably Evil: Savin could be engaging in brutal combat while joking around, as such in the case when he asked Harley what he wanted for Christmas while holding him hostage, ready to kill him.
- Healing Factor: Courtesy of Extremis. Doesn't save him when Tony blasts his midsection with a Unibeam.
- Oral Fixation: Gum. He's almost always chewing it unless he needs to speak.
- Slouch of Villainy: Seated in the Stark Industries building, he has one leg dangling over one armrest and his head leaning on the other.
- Smug Smiler/Slasher Smile: He quite clearly enjoys fighting.
- Smug Snake: He's quite arrogant, to say the least.
- Red Eyes, Take Warning: When using his Extremis powers.
- Torso with a View: Tony inflicts this on him via Chest Blaster.
- Touch of Death: His Extremis powers lets him generate temperatures in excess of 3000 degrees Celsius from his skin, allowing him to destroy anything he touches.
- Would Hurt a Child: Casually takes Harley hostage to get something from Tony.
Portrayed By: Stephanie Szostak
A war veteran who becomes an assassin after her exposure to Extremis.
The Ten Rings
Portrayed By: Faran Tahir
A major commander in an international terrorist organization known as "The Ten Rings". He was hired by to kill Tony Stark (without really knowing it was Stark to begin with). Upon finding out that they in fact had the
Tony Stark in custody, Raza got greedy and ambitious. It didn't end well for him
- Bald of Evil: This terrorist has one shiny dome.
- Canon Foreigner: He was created for the first film and has yet to appear in the comics. Although he seems to be partly inspired from Raza Longknife, especially his name and his scarred face.
- Canon Immigrant: Appeared in the 2010 Invincible Iron Man Annual as part of Mandarin's Blatant Lies retelling of Iron Man's origin.
- Character Death: After being deemed no longer useful by Obidiah Stane, he is disposed of by Stane.
- Chekhov's Gunman: His organization is called the Ten Rings and he expressed admiration for Genghis Khan. He's also shown wearing a prominent ring, which the novelization calls the Ring of Fire. All are references to long-time Iron Man villain and Big Bad of Iron Man 3, The Mandarin.
- Disc One Final Boss: He is the main antagonist until a little after Tony escapes from the cave.
- The Dragon: To Obadiah Stane, to a degree as he was hired to kill Tony. However, he mistakenly thinks they are a Big Bad Duumvirate.
- Dragon with an Agenda: Wanted Stane to give him Iron Man suits so he can conquer vast amounts of Asia. He didn't get his wish.
- Evil Plan: He wants to be a modern Genghis Khan and take over Asia with state-of-the-art weapons. He believes Tony is his ticket to acheving this.
- Expy: Of Wong-Chu, the Vietnamese warlord from the comics who serves the same role as Iron Man's Starter Villain.
- Good Scars, Evil Scars: The right side of his face was badly burnt when Tony Stark laid waste to the Ten Rings' encampment as he escaped in a prototype suit of powered armor.
- Out-Gambitted: By Obadiah Stane. Their meeting resulted in his death.
- Pragmatic Villainy: He recognizes there is more value to keeping Tony alive than killing him, either to get more money from Stane or to have Tony build weapons for him.
- Too Dumb to Live: He underestimates Stane's treachery, and is promptly disposed of.
- You Have Outlived Your Usefulness: Once Stane has the original Mark I armor, he is disposed of.
Portrayed By: Sayed Badreya
A high ranking member of the Ten Rings, who's eager for Stark to assemble them a Jericho missile.
- Beard of Evil: He's got a beard and he's evil.
- Bilingual Bonus: All his dialogue is in Urdu, so Yinsen must translate what he says for Tony.
- Blatant Lies: Tells Tony that once he completes the Jericho missile, he will let him go. Tony immediately recognizes this as a lie, which Yinsen confirms.
- Do with Him as You Will: After Tony saves the villagers Abu and his men were terrorizing, he throws him to them so they can have revenge.
- Evil Is Petty: In addition to keeping Tony prisoner and making him build a missile, he also forces him to wash his clothes. However, Tony's lived such a pampered life that he has no idea how and botches the job.
- Go-Karting with Bowser: In a deleted scene, Abu enters the cell to check Tony and Yinsen's progress, and, seeing them playing backgammon, makes Yinsen's move for him. He turns out to be pretty good at the game.
- You Have Failed Me: Raza kills him in a deleted scene for letting Tony and Yinsen play. However, this is non-canon, as Abu shows up in a later scene.
"The Mandarin" / Trevor Slattery
"Some people call me a terrorist, I consider myself a teacher. America...ready for another lesson?"
The supposed leader
of the international terrorist organization "The Ten Rings". After years of plotting in the shadows, he decides to come after Tony personally in Iron Man 3
"What do you say to your other nickname, the Merchant of Death?"
Portrayed By: Leslie Bibb
A reporter from Vanity Fair
. She has strong feelings against Tony Stark's weapons development, and feels he is a war profiteer. Despite this, sexual tension pops up between the two.
- Belligerent Sexual Tension: It takes just a minute and a half of arguing with Tony to pull her into bed with him. However, it doesn't go anywhere past that night.
- Fanservice Extra: She's in Iron Man for just five minutes and two of those minutes are spent in a Modesty Bedsheet or just a shirt.
- Hot Scoop: Tony only cared about the 'hot' part and snarked at her scoop.
- Jerk with a Heart of Gold/Good Is Not Nice: Pretty rude to both Tony and Pepper, yet has a strong sense of right and wrong.
- Jerkass Has a Point: After Tony escapes from capture, he agrees with her that his weapons development has gotten out of hand.
- Operation Jealousy: It's implied she started dating Justin Hammer in order to make Tony jealous. By then he doesn't care.
- Romantic False Lead: She's introduced before Pepper, who ends up being Tony's true love.
- Stealth Insult: Often the victim of this, especially from Pepper. In addition to the above "trash" one...
: [Christine]'s actually doing a big spread on me for Vanity Fair
. I thought I'd throw her a bone, you know. Right? Pepper
: Right. Well, she did quite a...spread
on Tony last year. Tony
: And she wrote a story as well
- What the Hell, Hero?: Her first meeting with Tony turns from interviewing to accusing, calling him the Merchant of Death and a war profiteer. When he returns from capture and tells her he's stopped Stark Industries weapons manufacturing, she tells him that's still not enough, because there are still plenty of Stark-built weapons already in the hands of terrorists. Of course that was Stane's doing, not Tony's. Though it does give Tony the idea of going to Afghanistan to deal with this problem.
- You Just Told Me: "I never said you were a superhero."
Dr. Ho Yinsen
Dr. Ho Yinsen
Portrayed By: Shaun Toub
An Afghan physicist who saves Tony Stark's life, and brings out his true potential.
- A-Team Firing: It's justified because he's a doctor and likely has no combat experience. The novelisation explains because he's a doctor and takes not killing very seriously even in the hellhole he's in.
- Call Forward/The Cameo: Appears in the opening scene of Iron Man 3, a flashback to New Year's Eve 1999. He tries to introduce himself to Tony at a party but is brushed off — an event he referenced during their first conversation in Iron Man.
- Death by Origin Story: The only difference between the film version of Iron Man and the various comic origins is that Dr. Yinsen, here, is Muslim. He's still a respected colleague, and he still sacrifices himself to allow Tony to escape.
- Death Seeker: Wanted to die so he can be reunited with his family, but not before helping Stark escape and become a better man.
- Doomed Hometown: Yinsen mentions hailing from a village called Gulmira. Guess where Raza decides to test his brand new Stark Industries toys?
- Heroic Sacrifice: Sacrifices himself to buy Tony time to activate his first Iron Man suit.
- Last Name Basis: With Tony. Justified in that he never tells Tony his first name in the first film. In Yinsen's cameo at the start of Iron Man 3 he tells him his first name is "Ho", but Tony doesn't remember the meeting years later.
- MacGyvering: Gerry rigged an electromagnet out of a car battery for Tony's heart. It won't last long, but it gives Tony enough time to patch together a unique upgrade.
- Nice Guy: An upstanding doctor.
- The Obi-Wan: Teaches and inspires Tony when he was at his lowest. Dies to ensure Tony would live.
- The Paragon: He is the main reason for Tony's Heel-Face Turn.
- The Power of Acting: How he keeps Tony alive for a while when they are in captivity, acting as though he were on the side of the Ten Rings when the members are present.
- Race Lift: He's Vietnamese in the comics, even when Tony's origin isn't tied to the Vietnam war. Amusingly, this means the MCU Yinsen still has an East Asian name despite being of Middle Eastern descent.
Portrayed By: Ty Simpkins
A kid Tony meets in Tennessee, who lets him use his garage/workshop to hide the Iron Man armor.
- Batman in My Basement: Or Iron Man in his garage.
- Deliberately Cute Child: Harley unsuccessfully tries to manipulate Tony into staying by comparing Tony to Harley's disappeared father and then saying in a cute voice that he's cold.
- Disappeared Dad: He went out for lottery tickets six years ago. He must've won, because he never came back.
- From the Mouths of Babes: He says a lot of things that Tony would normally be angry at people for, especially repeatedly invoking his Shell-Shocked Veteran panic attacks. However, since he's a kid, Tony mostly takes it in stride as best as he can, and it is Harley's help that allows him to break through the aforementioned Shell-Shocked Veteran status. Basically, he gives Tony a tastes of his own medicine in regards to Tony's constant pushing the envelope of acceptable behavior (like lightly zapping Dr. Banner in The Avengers).
- Genre Savvy: Attempts to manipulate Tony with a Deliberately Cute Child ploy but the equally Genre Savvy Tony drives away instead.
- Innocently Insensitive: Even after he sees how badly Tony reacts to it he repeatedly pushes Tony to tell him about New York.
- Kid Sidekick: He provides assitance to Tony when he's off-the-grid but when it really gets dangerous, Tony tells him to go home and not put himself at risk. He does reward him for his help however with a upgraded potato gun and an upgraded workshop to go with it.
- Tag Along Kid: Defied. Harley begs to leave Tennessee with Tony, but he mocks the idea and drives away.