MCU Fans Are in Tears Watching Tony Stark’s Entire Story Edited Into 1 Video

The Tony Stark story is so well known now that it might seem hard to bring a new perspective to it. Something different happens when you watch it all at once, however. 

No, that doesn’t mean watching all three Iron Man movies, Captain America: Civil War Spider-Man: Homecoming and all four Avengers movies all in one go, although some Marvel fans might be doing that to keep themselves busy during the stay at home orders.

One fan has taken all that and squashed it down to four minutes and 45 seconds. To hear Marvel fans tell it, the effect is quite striking. 

What happened to Tony Stark?

Robert Downey Jr.
Robert Downey Jr. | Nathan Congleton/NBC/NBCU Photo Bank

Here’s the short version, based on very, very brief summaries of the movies. Iron Man: Egocentric billionaire gets a giant lesson in humility and becomes a superhero Iron Man 2: Tony Stark fights Whiplash and meets Black Widow. (There really isn’t a lot to Iron Man 2).  

The Avengers: Tony Stark learns the hard way to play nice with other heroes but gets PTSD. Iron Man 3: Tony deals with PTSD while fighting with “the Mandarin” and learns to be a better partner to his love.

For a while there it looked that might be it for Iron Man, at least as far as solo movies, but there was more. Avengers: Age of Ultron: Tony inadvertently creates an AI supervillain. Oops.

Captain America: Civil War: Tony fights some of his fellow heroes, believing the Avengers need oversight, having caused too much collateral damage. Spider-Man: Homecoming: Tony mentors the web-slinger.  Avengers: Infinity War: Tony and his comrades taste the ultimate defeat at the thumb and forefinger of Thanos. Avengers: Endgame: Tony and friends win but at great cost. Tony dies. The end.

That’s a short version. The even shorter version is, Egocentric jerk learns to be less of a jerk and comes to realize he’s not the center of the universe. He sacrifices himself for the greater good and is lauded as a hero. Some have said Stark’s story mirrors Robert Downey Jr’s own in that Downey also went through a rough period, confronted his demons and came out at the top of his profession. 

What do fans say about the Stark short?

The short posted on Reddit and on YouTube doesn’t tell Tony’s Story in strict chronological order, instead bouncing back and forth in time. It hits certain thematic beats, such as Tony’s selfishness, his capacity for good, his guilt and his final redemption. It compares and contrasts these beats to show just how well his story hung together across 11 years and about 10 movies. 

Fans were approving, with one saying, “It’s not nice to cut onions so early in the morning. Nice work my friend.” But at least one fan took the story very seriously because it reminded him of his own life story. 

“Iron Man felt too close to home, in-fact sometimes it felt like I was watching myself (panic attack scene specially) and when he passed, I cried. I cried harder than any other moment in my life. He was my favorite, I associated myself with him, your movies, your acting, got me through so many dark times you have no idea.”

What’s the best order to watch the Marvel movies?

Just as is the case with Star Wars, there are different ways to watch the Marvel movies. For all the variations on a theme, it comes down to two methods. Do you watch the movies in order of release, or do you watch them with the story events taking place in chronological order?

Marvel movies more or less follow a linear timeline, but there are a few deviations. The story starts in World War II with Captain America: The First Avenger, skips forward to the 1990s with Captain Marvel, picks up with Iron Man in 2008, and more or less follows a straight line after that. 

That line is going to get jagged with the next release, Black Widow, which takes place after Captain America: Civil War. And god and Kevin Feige only know how much Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness will tangle matters. However one chooses to watch the movies, amateur editors show just how malleable one hero’s story can be.