A Very Close Look At The Iron Man 3 Trailer

We previously took a quick look at the shots included in the first Iron Man 3 promotional video, but there’s an awful lot more going on in the full trailer, of course.

Here’s something like a shot-by-shot discussion of what we can see, and what we know about it. There’s a few real mysteries, too…

Because the story features a large number of high quality images it has been spread across just three pages to help users on mobile devices and networks access the story easily. You’ll find the page controls at the bottom of each section.

It’s snowing. Because it’s Christmas. Shane Black is notorious for setting his pictures around Festivus, and Iron Man 3 is no different. This was confirmed by the use of Rockin’ Robin or some other such Jackson Five Christmas number in the footage played at Comic-Con.

A battered up Iron Man hits the ground like a sack of spuds. If sacks were made of iron.

There might be several shots ahead that show empty suits in action. From the position of the arms, I don’t think this is one of them…

…it wasn’t. It had Tony inside. This shot reprises one from the end of The Avengers, in which a battered, bruised Tony lays on the ground in New York City and pulls of his mask to say that stuff about shawarma.

I think we’re going to see the ending of The Avengers throws quite a long shadow over Iron Man 3. This shot is just the beginning. Indeed, before we get to the next new shot, Tony’s voice over says:

Nothing’s been the same since New York.

From the Comic-Con footage. Tony is using some kind of link-up with his suit, in pieces, to get it to come to him.

Notice the lack of any kind of headset or magnetic bracelet – we can probably assume he’s got something inside him, and that it’s most probably the Extremis technology from the comics series of that same name, or a variant thereof. There can’t be two new techs that we’re supposed to swallow in this new storyline, can there?

That’s a very precise bit of docking. Basically, a huge lump of metal rocketed at Tony’s hands and it didn’t break any of his fingers.

The one-glove look might be a bit of a thing this time. When Robert Downey Jr. came out into Hall H at San Diego this summer, he was wearing the one glove.

Another shot in which the Iron Man suit is disassembled into pieces. Doesn’t seem like it’s about to get up and start flying around this time, though.

Also note the telescope to the right of frame. What’s he looking upwards for? Just a bit of set dressing, do you think, or an opening for a possible Guardians of the Galaxy set-up or easter egg?

No Pepper.

James Rhodes in the middle of some hubbub. What’s everybody else doing, do you think? Looks to me like they’re hunting for evidence.

As the voice over mentions nightmares, I think we start seeing some shots from Tony’s bad dreams.

Who is this kid, do you think? I wouldn’t be surprised to find out it’s the young Tony Stark, though it could be anyone. Possibly the person Stark was visiting in the hospital?

Note the impact crater surrounded by memorial flowers, candles and crosses. Is Tony having dreams of his own death?

The shadows on the walls are clearly evocative of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, in which a nuclear blast destroyed a whole city. We’re resonating again, I think, with the end of The Avengers in which Stark confronted a nuclear missile, and New York was very, very heavily hit.

Stark’s voice over says “Honestly, there’s a hundred people who want to kill me” as Aldrich Killian appears on screen. Marks him out as villainous, though the expression does a pretty good job of that anyhow.

In these apparently consecutive shots, we appear to catch up with the voiceover and go to the scene where Tony is actually delivering the dialogue. The sound mix throws it off a little, though.

Note how the Iron Man suit is looking over and matching Tony’s gaze too. It’s like it’s another part of him, his big Tin Man id.

And to really hammer that idea home, here’s the suit bursting into the bedroom and getting horribly up close to Ms. Potts.

Pepper is tenderly, intimately engaged with Tony in an apparent state of concern – which tells us, I think, that he’s at unrest. As the suit interrupts, the idea plays as though Tony’s remotely controlling it, unconsciously, from a bad dream. This pulls together several ideas established earlier in the trailer.

This shot ends on quite a horrific note, I think. It’s my favourite image in the whole trailer.

Does the mind rule the Iron Man armour or does the Iron Man armour rule the mind?

Or maybe it’s Killian in the suit. Or somebody else. Though I’ve got a feeling it’s empty…

Internally triggered explosions appear to be destroying the Iron Man suits from the inside. A fail safe mechanism? Or have they been sabotaged, somehow? I’m starting see why Tony would want to be shot of them, anyhow. And when are where does this happen? Later in the trailer we see Stark come under fire from the outside – and in a sequence where at least one suit is intact because he escapes in it.

It’s working like a countdown, making its way from the newer to the older Iron Man suits.

Our villain… or is it? This might not be The Mandarin, but an imposter of some kind. There are no rings, for one thing, and there’s an odd tattoo on the back of the character’s neck.

That seems to be a roundel, like Captain America’s shield, and with the letter A in the middle, white on blue. I even considered that this might be Steve Rogers for a second, really settling into the 21st century with a nice bit of ink, but that didn’t add up. So what is going on here? Is The Mandarin part of the Captain America fan club?