Plain and simple, I love superhero movies! Iron Man, Superman, Batman, Spiderman, The Incredible Hulk, Thor, Captain America…they’re all great. Of course the best of them all is The Avengers. There are only 3 movies I have gone to the theater to see twice…the Avengers was the last one. The other two you ask…There’s Something About Mary and Avatar, both of which are in my top 10 movies of all time, but I digress.
So what is my fascination with superhero movies? I wish I had some profound answer that was both philosophical and meaningful in nature like “I’ve always dreamed of flying or having super strength”. However, the reality is that they are just really cool. The spectacular animations, the special powers, the creative villains who always get an edge but ultimately in the end the superhero always prevails. There’s something reassuring about that. Sure I act like a 12 year old and get all giddy when they announce the next installment of the Marvel series or any superhero movie for that matter, but that’s me.
I can remember being about 8 or 9 years old and using a towel or a yo-yo to move around the apartment like I was Spiderman. I couldn’t move to the next spot unless I landed one end of the web on a doorknob or counter and pretend to swing to the next place. I would challenge myself to move around the whole apartment. The funny thing about it is, there weren’t any superhero movies out when I was 8 other than Superman. No Batman movies were made and Spiderman was on Electric Company. I can still remember going to my Memere’s apartment and watching TV on UHF. I’m sure some readers have no idea what that is, but I digress once again. I didn’t know who Thor or Captain America were but I had heard of them. However, I had never heard of Iron Man.
Somewhere along the way I remember hearing the name Iron Man, but I never really knew much about him. That is until the first Iron Man movie came out in 2008. Admittedly, when I heard about it I thought they were referring to the Iron Giant. By this time the first two Spiderman movies had come out, the first of 3 Dark Knight movies was out and the Incredible Hulk reboot was already out (the Ed Norton version). Iron Man was the first of the Marvel Phase one movies to come out and I was amazed at how much I loved it. He had abilities that I had only seen before in Superman. He can fly, he has super strength with the suit, and he can shoot lasers. But Iron Man had something Superman never had…style.
Clark Kent was nerdy and unassuming, lacked confidence and pined over a mediocre woman who was a smoker and talked like a sailor. Tony Stark on the other hand is a “genius, billionaire, playboy, philanthropist” as he so eloquently told Captain America. What guy wouldn’t want to be Tony Stark?. He’s MacGyver, Hugh Hefner, Bill Gates and Superman all wrapped up into one. They couldn’t have picked a better actor to play the part than Robert Downey Jr. He’s perfect. He’s quick on his feet with a witty comment, his comedic timing is perfect and he makes for a dynamic Iron Man. If I had any preconceived notions of what Iron Man was supposed to be, maybe I would feel differently. But at this point, there can never be another Iron Man. I don’t know if I can say that of Christopher Reeve and Superman. Until this Iron Man series had come out, I was a Superman guy all the way..but I think I’ve crossed over now. That being said, I can’t wait until The Man of Steel comes out in June.
So what about this Marvel Phase One I was talking about. Well, you can watch a 3 minute video here that sums it all up. In short, Marvel set out to introduce a handful of superheroes beginning with Iron Man, then The Incredible Hulk, Iron Man 2, Thor, Captain America and finally it all culminated in The Avengers. Without even knowing it, I was hooked on all of these and it all paid off in the end as The Avengers may be my most favorite movie of all time. I’ll save my top ten list for another time.
What’s next you ask. Well, Marvel has announced Phase Two of the series beginning with the release of Iron Man 3. November 2013 Thor – The Dark World; April 2014 Captain America – The Winter Soldier; August 2014 Guardians of the Galaxy (various odd characters); and it ends with The Avengers 2 in April 2015. I won’t ruin it for my readers by disclosing any spoilers from Iron Man 3 in case you haven’t seen it already. However, if you have a chance to see it IMAX I strongly recommend it. These movies are what IMAX was made for.
In any case, I hope that you’re like me and you can step out of your reality every once in a while and enjoy the fantasy that is a good superhero movie. It’s OK if you own 2 Superman shirts, a Batman shirt and a Captain America shirt and wear them to the movies…your kids will only make fun of you for a little while…even though, I know they secretly love it.
For more information about upcoming movies and specifically superhero movies, here are two of my favorite sites to visit.