What's your favorite MCU monologue

Iron Man in Avengers 4: Endgame: That's why Tony Stark has to die!

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Tony Stark and Robert Downey Jr. were the starting gun for the Marvel Cinematic Universe for me, as for many others! Iron Man has been my favorite Avenger from the start. And yet I see only one satisfactory outcome for "Avengers 4: Endgame": Tony Stark has to die!

From April 24th, the remaining heroes in "Avengers 4" will demand their revenge against Thanos (Josh Brolin) in order to undo the extinction of half of all life in the universe. Like most fans, I firmly expect that the majority of those who have fallen will return. But it will take other sacrifices to defeat Thanos once and for all. And in my opinion, it just has to be Tony Stark who will eventually give his life to save those he loves. Only that would do justice to his change of character from the selfish playboy in “Iron Man” to a responsible father figure, especially in the trilogy ending “Iron Man 3”. But in order to clarify my point of view, why at the end of Tony Stark's story there can be nothing other than his death, we have to retrace his development in the MCU from the beginning (if you are very familiar with the MCU, the "Iron Man" films fully on the screen and therefore does not need to be refreshed, you can optionally scroll down to the section "From great strength").

Iron Man: "Genius, Billionaire, Playboy, Philanthropist"

Before our heroes fought their way through the street canyons of New York with an alien army, before they protected the world from a malicious artificial intelligence and after an argument in their own ranks finally had to suffer a bitter defeat in the fight against the insane titan Thanos it's just Tony Stark. The multi-billionaire and boss of the world's largest armaments company "Stark Industries" lives a life like being in a frenzy, with extravagant parties and many women.

His life changes radically when he travels to Afghanistan for a demonstration of the latest weapons technology and is critically wounded and kidnapped in a terrorist attack. During the attack, a shrapnel bored into his chest and threatened to reach his heart. While being coerced by the terrorists in a cave to build a weapon, he secretly develops a miniature arc reactor instead, a source of energy that powers an electromagnet in his chest to keep the shrapnel away from his heart. In addition, in the cave he develops a combat suit equipped with weapons, which is supplied with energy from the reactor. With the help of this suit, he manages to escape from the cave.

Immediately upon his return, he begins working on a more sophisticated version of the suit. Unlike most other heroes, who are always careful to keep their identities a secret to protect those who are close to them, Stark makes no secret of his achievement from the start and reveals himself to the public as Iron Man.

He stages himself as a hero and enjoys the attention under the thunderstorm of flashlights. It becomes clear that he has not yet understood the responsibility that his new position entails.

Despite his new, second identity, he remains largely true to his character and, apart from Pepper Potts (Gwyneth Paltrow), hardly anyone can get close to him. Only in "Marvel’s The Avengers" is he thrown together with a group of extraordinary personalities on the mission to protect New York City from an alien invasion. Despite the threat of annihilation, Stark still prefers to act as a lone fighter, whose ego even towers above a god of thunder. In the end, Stark risks his life to save the city from an impending nuclear disaster. This near-death experience should change his life permanently.

"Iron Man 3": A hero without a suit

In "Iron Man 3" Tony Stark increasingly struggles with the aftermath of his near-death experience. The events in New York left a clear mark on him, recurring panic attacks make a regular everyday life almost impossible. Where he was previously just a filthy rich guy who likes to screw on his suits, he was suddenly thrown into the role of a planet protector who has to take on a whole alien invasion. In addition, the threat could return at any time. Stark is obsessed with his suits more than ever. To Pepper's displeasure, he literally sinks into the work on the suits.

When Pepper's life is at stake, Stark realizes how much she actually means to him. For her sake, he destroys all of his suits at the end of "Iron Man 3". Finally, he removes the arc reactor from his chest and has the shrapnel, which has always threatened his life, removed as part of an operation. The last part of the "Iron Man" trilogy ends with a monologue by Tony Stark as he throws the arc reactor into the sea:

“My suit was never a distraction or a hobby. He was a cocoon. And now I'm a different person. Even if you take away my house and all of my toys, there is one thing you can never take away from me: I AM Iron Man. "

So far, Stark has always seen himself as the filthy rich guy who can become a superhero with the help of his suit. M.ith “Iron Man 3” he has now taken the most important step in his character development and has realized that it is not the suit that makes a hero. Much more important is the person in the suit. Tony Stark has turned into a real hero, with or without a suit. He accepts it as his duty to help other people with the means available to him.

Finally, Stark meets the young Peter Parker (Tom Holland) aka Spider-Man. Stark recognizes the potential of the wall crawler as a future Avenger and becomes his mentor. At the same time, he equips Parker with a new, modified suit. This is where Stark's character change from "Iron Man 3" comes to the fore:

When he confronts Parker after misconduct, Parker justifies his behavior with his admiration for Iron Man: "I just wanted to be like you. " Stark then remembers his past and the wrong decisions he has made in his previous life. His answer is all the more accurate: "I want you to be better."Just as Stark first had to learn to take responsibility, he is now trying to pass this lesson on to the younger generation. He indicates to Parker that he could not forgive himself if something should happen to his protégé.

Strongly, Peter wants to take the suit off again as a punishment, but he claims that he is nothing without the suit. Then Stark only replies: "If you are nothing without the suit, then you shouldn't have it". Here, too, Stark remembers the knowledge he was able to draw from the events of "Iron Man 3": A hero is not defined by his suit, it is just a means to an end.

From selfish playboy to caring father figure

With the arrival of Thanos (Josh Brolin) and his minions in "Avengers 3: Infinity War", the world of the Avengers would change forever. To prevent him from collecting all the Infinity Stones and thus wiping out half of the universe, Stark, Parker and Doctor Strange (Benedict Cumberbatch) arrive with Peter Quill (Chris Pratt) and Mantis (Pom Klementieff) on Thanos' home planet Titan. Despite their best efforts, they ultimately have to surrender to the power of Thanos.

Then the unthinkable happens: Thanos actually manages to unite all the infinity stones and extinguishes half of all life. To Stark's horror, Peter Parker is also among the victims: Still on Titan, the boy, who for Stark had become like a son of his own, crumbles to dust in his arms. That key moment brings me back to Stark's statement that if anything happened to Parker, he would feel responsible for it.The fight against Thanos just got a very personal note for him.

Tony Stark makes the greatest sacrifice

When “Iron Man” got the MCU rolling in 2008, Tony Stark was alone in the limelight. 22 films later, however, he is now one hero among many, with whom you have to be careful not to get lost in the crowd.That's why there just has to be a mighty bang in "Avengers 4" to appropriately say goodbye to Iron Man from the MCU! To put him in the background as a slowly graying mentor figure simply wouldn't have the punch, especially since we already saw him in the role in "Spider-Man: Homecoming". Tony Stark is simply not good as a Yoda in the long run.

As the trailer for "Endgame" shows, Tony Stark is quite ready to do"Whatever is necessary"to bring back the fallen. In addition, there is a strong personal desire to avenge his protégé Peter Parker, for whose death Tony feels responsible. From a dramaturgical point of view, it would not only be a clever, but actually a necessary move if Iron Man sacrificed himself for Peter's life. Only that would adequately reflect the internal conflict that Tony Stark had slowly built up over the course of eleven years.

Tony Stark would finally go down in history as a hero and thus always remain a part of the MCU - and Peter Parker would learn the most important lesson of all through his sacrifice:

With great power comes great responsibility.

"Iron Man 3" is running tonight at 8:15 pm on RTL 2. Tune in if you want to see Tony Stark go through his biggest change in character before "Avengers 4: Endgame".