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Tony Stark Does Tokyo

October 3, 2010


Wow. Really? People aren’t digging on this?

Iron Man’s pretty snazzy.

First off: As soon as I saw that Scorpio mecha claim that he was a part of Zodiac, I asked a comic book fan buddy of mine if there was a super villain group from Marvel that did the whole Zodiac thing. Within seconds he linked me to this. While they’re clearly old school costumed types and not power armor dudes, I noticed something interesting. Apparently the first villain to appear out of this group was Scorpio, not unlike this episode of Iron man. Could be coincidence, since “team based on the Zodiac” is hardly anything original (I’m sure every geeky writer that’s imagined super hero teams and shit have come up with that idea more than once.), and having Scorpio be the first is perfectly reasonable since it makes for the most obvious villain (OMG GIANT SCORPION!), but I gotta wonder if they’re rifting off of this. Iron Man’s an Avenger after all, and this team fought The Avengers back in the day. Something to think about.

Otherwise, this is awesome because it’s making very few concessions to the anime crowd. It takes place in Japan and it’s animated by Madhouse. Those are the only things that make you realize that this is an anime. The story feels like it could be inserted into a run of the Iron Man comic and it’d feel no different from the preceding story. Hell, even the pacing of the episode,with lots of fade-ins and fade-outs, made it feel like I was turning the page of a comic book every 30 seconds or so. The designs could easily be used in a Marvel comic as well, since their anime nature is relatively subtle compared to most modern designs. And considering how so many western artists have been influenced by anime and manga in recent years, only the most hardcore comic fans would find them off putting.

Yeah, kids, what y’all are getting here is a genuine Iron Man comic book story animated. It’s good stuff.

My only gripe is the brevity of the action scenes. Mainly where Stark fought Scorpio. Scorpio pins him down, Stark boots him off with his jet boots, and then he fries him. It’s true to the movie’s style of fighting, since Iron Man wiped the floor with everyone in quick fashion in the movie as well, but I didn’t like it in the movie either. It’s fine to see him do that to cannon fodder, but to see him do it to what’s presumably one of the 12 Big Bads in the anime? Y’all can do better than that. Trade a few punches and laser blasts before the finishing blow next time. But that’s a minor thing.

Almost makes me want to check out US comics again. Then I remind myself that one ~30 page comic costs upwards of $4. Nevermind. I’ll just watch the Iron Man anime to get my fix.

Former Comic Book Geek Moment: I’m amused by the fact that the sub group that did this is called Force Works, especially because that series was so shitty. What the fuck, Force Works? You go and kill Wonder Man in the first storyline? After he had a fucking awesome 25 issues series scant months before that which molded him into a great, complicated character? Fuck you, Force Works. Least he came back later.

One Comment leave one →
  1. October 3, 2010 12:12 PM

    Yeah, I’m digging Iron Man as well. Although I’d say there’s a couple small things that this being a Japanese/Korean production have benefited the show so far.

    Primarily, the chauvinism. Basically, in an American production, the plucky reporter girl would have been a high and mighty nagging bitch who has a permanent spot on the moral high ground. It’s just an American TV trope. You see it in sitcom wives and plucky reporters all the time.

    But not here. Here the plucky reporter rocks because she’s genuinely incompetent. Not in a slapstick way, but in that she’s inexperienced and naive, and unable to score anything juicy out of Tony, despite having him all to herself for like, what, 45 minutes? Maybe over an hour?

    We’ll see how she turns out, but yeah, otherwise, this is a very American series, and I dig it. It’s very 1st movie Tony. Maybe slightly less snappy, but this is bonafide Tony. You can feel the production love.

    Fight coulda been better, especially against Scorpio. Who should have made a more obvious escape. We’ll see what happens next. Next ep preview looks good in a “filler” sense. And by “filler”, I mean universe/character building.

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