Avengers Month: Classic Scene – “You’ve Become Part of a Bigger Universe”

Iron Man (2008)

Directed by Jon Favreau

The Scene

Tony Stark has been on one hell of an adventure. Living a life as a billionaire playboy genius at the top of a weapons and technology empire would be enough for most people and he’s been enjoying life so far. When he’s been abducted by Middle Eastern militants the reality of his weapons industry dawns on him and he makes amends the logical way – building a robot suit and using it to fight injustice! Having having shut down the militants operation and destroying the man who would exploit his new technology Tony Stark announces to the world that he is the superhero known as Iron Man.

Tony Stark: he actually is the billionaire playboy douchebag Bruce Wayne pretends to be.

When he gets home that evening, a surprise guest is waiting…

The Deconstruction

Marvel did well to keep this hidden gem a secret leading up the films release. Rumours of Samuel L. Jackson taking up the role of Nick Fury, leader of the Avengers, had been in circulation for some time with speculation about an Avengers movie being just a dream of fanboys. Iron Man defied expectations and was more fun and more box office than anyone expected, a great debut for the rookie studio, so no-one expected them to play their hand so early in the game.

Nestled away halfway through the credit sequence, it initially looks as though a new enemy is being introduced for a sequel. His house is dark and his electronic butler Jarvis has been compromised. Not only was this scene placing the first piece of the Avengers puzzle but introducing Nick Fury, who would be the linking element between the next several films. His mocking, arrogant tone already sets the scene for the key role. Straight away he mocks Tony Stark for his very public announcement of his duel identity, then drops the bomb that while Stark sees himself as the centre of the universe he is just one small part of a larger plan. Then comes the words we were waiting for – “I’m here to talk to you about the Avengers Initiative”.

Separating this tease out from the rest of the movie and giving so little away in this one scene is the smartest thing the Marvel studio ever did.

Best Bit: The casting of Nick Fury. Nailed it.