Iron Man 2 (2010) – Complete Annotations


Stark greets his admirers waiting for him at the expo.

This location of the part of the expo is the Ramón C. Cortines School of Visual and Performing Arts. 450 N Grand Ave, Los Angeles.

Amongst those he greets are Larry Ellison, the founder of software company Oracle.

Oracle have product pale net throughout the film, and was keen to let people know the association. They created this website and video.

Next is Stan Lee in his required cameo.

Stan Lee in Iron Man 2 (2010)
Stan Lee in Iron Man 2 (2010)

He’s dressed as Larry King, the television host.

Waiting for Stark and Hogan is a US Marshal, played by Kate Mara.

At this point, she had had roles in films like Shooter, but she would hit it big in House Of Cards, leading to roles in films like The Martian.

Stark and Hogan drive away in an Audi R8 Spyder.

An establishing shot of Washington DC. You can tell because it has the Capitol Building and the Washington Monument.

Inside however, it’s actually the Grand Hall of Pasadena Masonic Temple, 200 South Euclid Avenue, Pasadena.

In the hearing with Stark is Pepper Potts, played by Gwyneth Paltrow.

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Gwyneth Paltrow as Pepper Potts in Iron Man 2 (2010)

Gwyneth Paltrow This is Paltrow’s 2nd appearance in the MCU. We last saw her in Iron Man (2008). Paltrow told Comicbookmovie:

The second time around— the good thing about doing a film again is that you can refine things. You know you’re character better and you sort of know where they want to go more. And, it’s nice. Jon Favreau is very collaborative. We improvised almost all of our scenes, the actual dialogue. And he would say to me, ‘You know Pepper. You tell me, like, what’s right here, because you know Pepper.’

Senator Stern, played by the late Garry Shandling.

Garry Shandling as Senator Stern in Iron Man 2 (2010).
Garry Shandling as Senator Stern in Iron Man 2 (2010).

23294841fad9b7c969758ae9bff96017There’s no Stern in the comics, he was created for the film. The character’s name is an apparent nod to radio presenter and comic Howard Stern. Shandling is also a fan of Stern’s.

Shandling is a comedy legend, cast against type for this film. He’s best known for his ground breaking TV comedies It’s Garry Shandling‘s Show and The Larry Sanders Show.

The hearing is being televised on C-Span, a real public broadcasting channel focussed on US political matters.

Also at the hearing is Justin Hammer, played by Sam Rockwell.

Sam Rockwell as Justin Hammer in Iron Man 2 (2010)
Sam Rockwell as Justin Hammer in Iron Man 2 (2010)

Iron_Man_Vol_1_120 Hammer in the comics is also a rival and adversary for Iron Man. As head of Hammer Industries, he was a rich weapons manufacturer with no powers of his own, often working with Iron Man’s villains. All those characteristics remain intact, although he was British and a lot older in the comics.

He first appeared in Iron Man #120 (March 1979). He was created by Bob Layton, David Michelinie and John Romita, Jr.

tumblr_nekvxzOHsv1r1ms15o9_1280Rockwell was actually in the running to play Iron Man back in 2008. He’s starred in acclaimed roles for films like Confessions Of A Dangerous Mind and Moon and much more. Rockwell told ComicBookMovie:

We sort of didn’t know where (Justin) was going and we discovered that as we shot the film, which is also kind of exciting. It also takes the pressure off you, because you’re like–you know, I got a speech a half-hour before we shot it. I got a speech at lunch time, so I had to learn that and figure that out and use little tricks, you know, but we got it. It’s on film, it’s on celluloid.

Inititally, the filmmakers were going to make the character older (like the comics), and approached Al Pacino about playing the role.

There was an extended version of Hammer’s speech.

More people turn up to the hearing. Now it’s James Rhodes, played by Don Cheadle.

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Don Cheadle as James Rhodes in Iron Man 2 (2010)

Rhodes appeared in Iron Man (2008) played by Terrence Howard. For whatever reason (many documented), Howard did not return for the sequel, and was replaced by Cheadle.

u9IGPM2tTqaav4rnfW2F_don-cheadle-head-shotCheadle has had a long and acclaimed career, starring in films such as Hotel Rwanda to the Ocean’s Eleven series.

Stark says he’d consider the role of Secretary of Defence. This is a role Stark would actually take in the comics.


Stark has an awesome double sided touch screen phone.

There was a deleted scene with Stark, Rhodes and Potts.

Vanko watches the hearing from Moscow.

Vanko finishes is weapon, and looks at his wall of clippings. We see a lot more titles. Wired (also from Iron Man), Life magazine, Spanish newspaper El Pais.

Back to Stark’s home. It hasn’t moved from the first film – it’s on Point Dume of the Malibu coast, and a CGI creation.

Then in Stark’s workshop. A set.

We hear the computer JARVIS, voiced by Paul Bettany.

Paul BettanyThis is Bettany’s 2nd time voicing JARVIS. We last heard him in Iron Man (2008).

The music we hear is Should I Stay Or Should I Go by The Clash, from their album Combat Rock, released in 1982.

We get a glimpse of the Iron Man suits. The first three from the first film, and his current Mark 4.

It is odd that Mark 1 is here? Didn’t it get destroyed and found by the Ten Rings, then repurposed by the Iron Monger?

Stark watches himself on YouTube.

Stark checks his blood again. Toxicity is 24%.

Stark is dying. The Palladium is killing him.

There was a longer version of this scene that was deleted.

Potts arrives.


The red and blue Iron Man poster is a play on the famous poster of Barrack Obama with the word hope, designed by Shepard Fairey.

Tony swaps the poster for the Barnett Newman painting. Newman was an abstract American artists in the middle part of the 20th century. This painting is called Now II.

He makes Potts CEO of Stark Industries.

The music here is called Making Pepper CEO.

Potts also becomes CEO in the comics.

Back in Moscow, Vanko gets a package. According to Favreau, the person delivering the package is a member of the Ten Rings, the enemy terrorist group from Iron Man (2008).

It’s a fake passport, with the name Boris Turgenov.

In the comics, Turgenov is the name of the second Crimson Dynamo. He was actually defeated by the first one (named Anton Vanko….complicated I know).

He also has tickets to the Grand Prix in Monaco.

Back at Stark’s, he’s boxing with Hogan.

In the comics, Hogan was a former boxer.

The music we hear is The Magnificent Seven by The Clash. From their triple album Sandinista!, released in 1980.

What do you call that fighting style? Robert Downey Jr studied a form of martial arts called Wing Chun for this film, and uses it in many of his action roles ever since.

The notary is Natasha Romanoff, who is of course Black Widow. She is played by Scarlett Johansson.

Natasha Romanoff played by Scarlett Johansson in Iron Man 2 (2010)
Natasha Romanoff played by Scarlett Johansson in Iron Man 2 (2010)

Tales_of_Suspense_Vol_1_52 Black Widow is one of the mainstays of the Avengers in the comics. She is a Russian spy who started as an Iron Man foe, she defected to be on the side of good.

She first appeared in Tales of Suspense #52 (April 1964), and was created by Don Heck, Stan Lee and Don Rico.

scarlettJohansson was hugely acclaimed for drama roles up to this point, including a breakout in Lost In Translation and the Woody Allen films Match Point and Vicky Cristina Barcelona. She would go from strength to strength, becoming the highest paid actress in the world in 2016. She told ComicBookMovie:

I loved working with Jon (Favreau). I loved working with Robert (Downey Jr.). And, so, you know, for me, as an actor, we kind of have a beginning, middle and end, and a one-and-a-half or two-hour segment or whatever, and we’re done with it. So, for me to be able to bring something like this back and kind of develop the character is exciting and something we don’t normally get to do as actors.

Emily Blunt was originally considered for the role.

Rushman is a surname that Black Widow has used in the comics as an alias.

There’s lots of Everlast logos, a big company for boxing goods.

5 thoughts on “Iron Man 2 (2010) – Complete Annotations

  1. It would be better if you stopped writing as if the person reading this doesn’t know the plot or characters. It’s annoying, nobody is going to read this without having watched them in the first place so why are you writing things like “Stark checks his blood and there’s something wrong. Toxicity is 19%.”

    Nobody cares about the actual plot unless you have real info to back it up.

    1. It’s more trying to put markers if you’re trying to watch along. It’s supposed to be a written commentary. I get your point. I’ll just need to find other ways of letting people know where they are in that 5 minute section.

  2. You say that “There’s definitely some of [Steve] Jobs in Stark, and it’s the butt of a joke that would feature in Guardians of the Galaxy 2 (2017).”

    How do you know that?

    1. We’ve seen some photos on set of a Steve Jobs film poster starring Nathan Fillion as Simon Williams, Wonderman – as Tony Stark. I assume it will be an Easter egg that I will write about when I ever get there!

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