IRON MAN 3 SPOILERS BELOW
I enjoyed Iron Man 3 quite a bit. Shane Black’s take on the further adventures of Tony Stark presented a reasonable case of what might actually happen to a person who encountered two gods, a living legend, an irate green giant, and countless alien hordes and lived to tell the tale. In fact, Tony might be getting off light with just a case of PTSD.
I was especially fond of the controversial Mandarin twist. Iron Man and Iron Man 3 both have potent messages about how this country confronts terrorism and other global security issues. By reducing the Mandarin to a false figurehead, Shane Black asks viewers to reconsider the hierarchy of terrorist groups and challenges us to recognize that organizations like al-Qaeda and al-Shabaab are comprised of many dangerous elements (including factors that originate here in America) that can’t be eliminated by focusing on one person. In the wake of Osama bin Laden’s execution, this was a timely and valuable theme.
Plus, Ben Kingsley was hilarious as Trevor, the hapless actor who portrayed the Mandarin.
While I appreciate the message derived from the twist, I was a bit disappointed that it meant there would be no actual Mandarin in the Marvel cinematic universe. However, some news this week informed me that I might be getting ahead of myself. Last week, it was reported that Ben Kingsley was working on a super secret project for Marvel Studios. The Latino Review, often lauded for its ability to land accurate scoops well ahead of other news sources, claims to have some details about this clandestine endeavor. The related article had this to say:
According to sources, Marvel wants to make it up to fans so in the one shot, the REAL Mandarin is furious with Aldrich Killian and Ben Kingsley’s character Trevor Slattery for the mockery they made of the real Mandarin’s identity and legacy. The real Mandarin wants to set the record straight.
Dear Galactus, please let this rumor ring true. The Mandarin is one of the more important villains in the Iron Man mythos and serves as valuable foil to the technologically-adept Stark. One of my hopes for Iron Man’s film adaptations is a thorough examination of the “science versus magic” dynamic that the Mandarin brings to the table. While this dream was dashed with Iron Man 3, this rumor has given it new life. While I am glad to hear there may be a Mandarin again, I am curious about who will play him and how he will be portrayed, given the character’s less-than-politically-correct features. However, I’m certain Marvel Studios is capable of creating a realistic and compelling Mandarin devoid of the ethnic insensitivities.
What are your thoughts about the Mandarin’s possible return/entrance to the Marvel cinematic universe? Let us know down below!