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Old 04-29-2008, 06:10 PM Offline   #1 (permalink)



 
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Default Lore Sjöberg's Alt Text: Iron Man Battles vs. Nefarious Ferrous Adversaries

The Iron Man movie will soon fly into a crowded, expensive theater near you. If you're not braving the fan horde to see it on opening night Thursday, you might be following my plan: See if your friends like it, and if they do, catch the flick on Blu-ray.
That leaves you with three to five months to fill while waiting for the Golden Avenger to soar into your living room and leave scorch marks on the wall-to-wall. But is Iron Man really the best use of your iron dollar? Might there be other, equally ferrous, folks who meet or exceed the quality standards over at Stark Industries? I think we should investigate.
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Iron Sheik

Job: Professional wrestler
Powers: The Camel Clutch, the Iranian Drop, yelling at the camera
Challenge: Hell-in-a-Cell match
No contest here. Even if Iron Sheik fights dirty -- and he will -- folding chairs and trash cans aren't going to do anything against state-of-the-fictional-art powered armor. If the Sheik is lucky, Iron Man will pin him with one finger on each shoulder. If he's not, the second the ref's back is turned, out come the antitank missiles.
Winner: Iron Man.
The Iron Giant

Job: Giant robot and underappreciated animated film star
Powers: Flight, rockets, heavy-handed moralization
Challenge: Fight!
The Iron Giant is, in essence, a 30-foot-tall version of Iron Man with no human inside and defensive weaponry he can't control. I don't think many people have a chance against a bad-tempered, 20-ton version of themselves. Iron Man's only chance is to talk the robot down by appealing to his buried conscience. However, you can't make big, wet cartoon eyes from behind a mask, so it won't work. Iron Man is reduced to a red-and-gold pile of recyclables in about 15 seconds.
Winner: Iron Giant.
Iron Maiden

Job: Heavy-metal band
Powers: Screaming guitar solos, stage pyrotechnics, skeletal mascot
Challenge: Battle of the bands
Iron Man makes a surprisingly good showing here, recruiting fellow Avengers Thor, Hulk and Captain America on lead guitar, drums and bass respectively. Iron Man doubles as lead singer and the most badass amp you've ever heard. They have a respectable showing with covers of Metallica's "Enter Sandman" and Blue Oyster Cult's "Godzilla," but fall way behind in the second set when Hulk insists that they play "Brand New Key."
Winner: Iron Maiden.
Iron Chef Japanese

Job: Celebrity chef
Powers: Fusion cuisine, excellent knife technique, 3.98-average review on Yelp
Challenge: Battle Conger Eel
Tony Stark has people for this sort of thing. Iron Man sits back and sips a Full Throttle through a straw while his "assistants" -- actually top Japanese chefs flown in at great expense -- do the cooking. However, in a managerial screw-up, Iron Man doesn't realize that you can't expect two top chefs to work in harmony. His team falls into fisticuffs while chef Masaharu Morimoto presents an exquisite eel-kidney sorbet over hand-shaped nori crackers.
Winner: Iron Chef Japanese.
Iron Eyes Cody

Job: Anti-litter symbol, faux Cherokee
Powers: A single tear representing the pain and sorrow of indigenous peoples encountering '70s-era fast-food trash
Challenge: Impersonation
Tony Stark and Iron Eyes Cody are both men with a secret. Stark dresses up as a flying weapons platform, and Cody pretends to be a Native American to get acting roles. Who's better at putting up a front? Each is challenged to pose as a 14-year-old girl in a chat room to catch child molesters. Stark ends up trading stock tips instead, and Cody sheds a single tear every time anyone makes a LOLcat reference. However, the Recording Industry Association of America sues them both for illegal downloading.
Winner: Tie.
- - -
Born helpless, nude and unable to provide for himself, Lore Sjöberg eventually overcame these handicaps to become a magnate, a magnifico and a magnetar.

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