Iron Man 2 has started filming, and as such there has been a whole slew of production and promo images released, but nothing that stood out as noteworthy. Mostly, we’ve seen behind the scenes and set photos, and a few of RDJ as Tony Stark in various stages of Iron Man armor. Today, courtesy of USA Today, we got the first official look at Mickey Rourke as Whiplash, the Russian villain squaring off with Iron Man in the sequel. Check it out below, with analysis to follow:
So, thoughts? Looks like Rourke put that suit together himself with parts he picked up in a junkyard, similar to the Iron Man mark 1 armor from the first film. I’m not sure exactly how I feel about this. I guess first I should address the addition of Whiplash himself… I’ve never been fond of Whiplash’s appearances throughtout the years, so I’m a little bummed he’s being included in the film. The positive I see here is the opportunity to include the “Whiplash death by Iron Man” plotline from the comics. I won’t spoil it just in case it is in the film, but if you are curious just look up Whiplash on Wikki or Marvel’s Character’s pages. It was a big deal. Plus, when Rourke was attached initially, the report only said that he would play an unnamed Russian baddie. Everyone speculated that it would be the Crimson Dynamo, another man in a special powered suit. I don’t know about anyone else, but I’m glad it wasn’t Dynamo; I wouldn’t want to see the films get stuck in a rut with a revolving door of robotic suit wearing villains. It’ll be a nice change up, no matter how lame I think the character is. Want to know just how lame Whiplash looks in the comics? Take a look:
I’m glad Rourke is in this film, as I”m a pretty big fan of his. If they had to go with Whiplash, they couldn’t have found a better actor to fill the part. Rourke is a talented actor and he looks the part. It sure looks like he bulked up for the part. And on the subject of being prepared for the role, there were reports earlier that Rourke had spent some time in a Russian prison as research for the role. It’s always nice to see an actor preparing for a role, especially in a film as big as Iron Man 2 is sure to be. Even though I don’t like the comic character, Jon Favreau earned my trust and respect after seeing the first film, so if he thinks it’s a good idea, I’m with it 100% I hope that they hint a little more at the Mandarin than they did in the original film, because he is without a doubt Iron Man’s #1 villain and arch-nemesis. If I had to guess, and speculation is part of the job here, I’d say that Mandarin has been planned as a three story arc villain to appear in the third film as the character pulling the strings for everything that has happened to Iron Man so far. Favreau has hinted as such in earlier interviews while he was still making the original Iron Man, so that is likely the case.
Here’s hoping the sequel kicks as much ass as the original.