Relating to Tony Stark: Something I Didn’t Quite Expect.

6 May

This is going to be a very short ramble on a particular (and somewhat central) plot point of the new Iron Man 3 movie. I don’t really think anything I’m about to say is incredibly spoilery, seeing as this whole aspect is introduced fairly early on in the film and, when you really think about it, it shouldn’t be much of a surprise that it’s something the character of Tony Stark is going through. However, if you’re trying to keep any/all information about Iron Man 3 away until you finally see it, then yeah, close this browser tab now.

And let me make this clear that this is not a critique on the film either. Iron Man 3 had a lot of problems, and it certainly wasn’t perfect, nor my favorite of all the Marvel-Disney films. Even so, I happened to love it. I was hooked from the get go and it kept me enticed the entire time. It even managed to throw a couple curve balls I didn’t see coming (as much as I love the Marvel-Disney films, they’re pretty easy to predict, so it was nice to have a few twist and turns thrown my way). Anyway, that’s not what I want to focus on.

I’d like to touch very briefly on Tony Stark’s anxiety disorder in this film.

(Are you surprised? You shouldn’t be surprised.)

Can I just say how fucking nice it was to see a superhero plagued with something that I’ve been dealing with for this last month of my life? I mean, obviously Tony Stark has more viable reasons for having an anxiety disorder than just being stressed out about graduating college (ie. the whole wormhole deal in Avengers), but it just… it just made me feel a little less alone. Y’know? Especially because his anxiety seemed as physical as mine is, where is kind of takes over your whole body at a moment’s notice.

And it’s funny because, ten minutes into Iron Man 3, I started having a minor anxiety attack. Nothing major, but I was having a hard time breathing and there was a bit of light headedness going on. And then, a minute or so after I started in on my own anxiety, trying to calm myself without drawing attention from the friend I was with, Tony snapped the crayon. Then I watched as he raced outside, unable to breathe, in order to find out what was wrong with him, and the second that JARVIS told him it was anxiety I just wanted to cry. I don’t know how to explain it. There’s just something so comforting watching Tony’s journey throughout the film (despite the really quick, unfulfilling resolution at the end having to do with how he overcame it). Obviously my heart went out to him whenever he’d have an attack throughout the film, as I’ve come to know what that’s like. I’ve spent a lot of this last month feeling so very alone, and while I know I have many friends who’ve gone through/are going through the same thing as me, it’s hard to keep that in perspective at times. But seeing it on a big screen with a character you’ve come to know and love over the years? Oof. That made a world of difference.

While I know he’s not a real person and that there are actual people I can look towards for comfort, the thought of a guy like Tony Stark dealing with this same ordeal that I’ve suddenly had thrown at me, well, quite honestly, it made me feel stronger.

I mean, if Tony Stark can kick anxiety’s ass, then what’s stopping me?

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