Marvel’s third venture into the direct-to-DVD market comes in the form of ol’ shellhead, aka “The Invincible Iron Man”. Like its predecessors, Marvel continues to aim its animated line towards a more adult audience, which makes it a lot easier to sit through. “The Invincible Iron Man” tells the origins of ol shellhead before his recruitment into the Avengers, with yet another take on how he became Iron Man. The Tony Stark we’re introduced to is a brilliant, billionaire playboy industrialist.
In his never ending quest to make more money for his company, Tony runs afoul of a Chinese rebel group while excavating an ancient underground city that once belonged to the notorious figure known as the Mandarin. While in China trying to rescue his friend James Rhodes, Tony is injured by the Jade Dragons. He’s captured by the Dragons and while in captivity, and still suffering from his wounds, he creates the bulky grey version of the Iron Man armor in order to escape his captors.
Unfortunately we learn that the grey armor wasn’t the first Iron Man that he’s created. Seems that Stark had been building various Iron Man armors for years now, contradicting the comic book origins in one fell swoop. What’s even more confusing is that this animated Iron Man is supposed to follow the “Ultimate” version of the character, since it exists in the Ultimate Avengers universe, but it takes most of its cues from the regular Marvel Iron Man.
As one of Shellhead’s first forays into feature film, the movie is a decent comic book movie. I was pleasantly surprised with the impressive animation of Iron Mans suit and the blasts, take offs and blasters that the suit is famous for. Despite some minor flaws, the movie worked and worked well. Marvel’s been having a heck of a time with its animated movies, improving with each one. Now if they would just work on their live action movies a bit better we’d all be happy.