Episode #46 - Doomsday
Original Airdate - June 13th, 2012
To keep reality itself from being torn apart, Iron Man must team up with his enemy Mandarin to stop Dr. Doom after he captures the Ninth Ring – and Tony’s father too!

Review by Arsenal


With all due respect to the Crimson Dynamo, Iron Man has a pretty forgettable rogues gallery.

I mean, you know you’re hurting when your two best villains are a Lex Luthor retread and a Fu Manchu knockoff with better jewelry.

Credit where credit’s due – the creative team of Iron Man: Armored Adventures has worked over the last two seasons to give most of Tony’s adversaries a proper back story so they’re not just “Russian Iron Man” or “guy with laser powers.”

Unfortunately, these back stories often feel familiar so it’s hard not to watch think of the Living Laser as “Flint Marko with laser powers” or the Controller as “Hugo Strange with better hair.”

That’s why it’s such a good thing that the Iron Man crew has been willing to dig into the Marvel toy chest and pull out some cooler villains like Magneto and Dr. Doom, even if they’re not typically viewed as Iron Man antagonists.

More importantly, the crew doesn’t misuse these A-list villains.

Hard truth time: Iron Man: Armored Adventures did more and better with Dr. Doom in two episodes than Fantastic Four: World’s Greatest Heroes did with 26.

And Doom is, by far, the best thing about this episode. Every scenery-chewing monologue, every decibel of beautiful pomposity is a joy to Doom fans who cringed through recent Fantastic Four movies and television series.

(By the way, I didn’t hate FF: WGH but it never found its footing with Doom – period.)

I should probably, at some point, recap the episode’s events. Doomsday pairs Stark and the Mandarin against Dr. Doom, who has recovered one of the Mandarin’s rings.

Yup, that’s about all there is to this episode; and that’s all there needs to be too. Because, when you have Doom done right, everything else is just details.

I leave you with one final quibble, and it involves a massive spoiler; so stop here if you’d rather avoid that sort of thing.

At the conclusion of Doomsday, Howard and Tony Stark are finally reunited. And, frankly, the moment does not resonate as much as you would hope after 40-plus episodes of build-up.

The blame lands primarily on the animation.

The animation – a frequent scapegoat of mine in the show’s early episodes – has done a better job of portraying the action sequences, especially in this second season. But it still lacks the fluidity to sell these emotional moments.

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