How Extremis May Affect Other Characters in ‘Iron Man 3′

Published 2 years ago by , Updated June 27th, 2013 at 6:14 pm,

Iron Man 3 Extremis Soldiers Spoilers How Extremis May Affect Other Characters in Iron Man 3

If one thing is sure of Iron Man 3 and the rest of the Marvel Studios movies, it’s that the accompanying toy lines are surprisingly accurate. While that’s good news for children and collectors, it also means that large parts of the film’s plot and cast are being regularly spoiled by outside manufacturers.

The newest Iron Man 3 details on the enemies Tony Stark will face, and what larger repercussions they may have on the following movies may still just be speculation, but they hint at a formidable fight for the Armored Avenger.

Rather than revealing new suits of armor, the latest news comes from Minimates (courtesy of CBM), having to do more with the Mandarin’s forces – and where Dr. Aldrich Killian (Guy Pearce) – will be fitting in. And yes, the Extremis Virus – or some version of that concept from Warren Ellis’ “Extremis” miniseries – will be playing a role.








The figurine of Tony Stark partially suited up, summoning the Mark 42 armor to himself (as seen in the latest trailer) isn’t shocking, but the miniature version of the ‘Extremis Soldier’ seemingly puts some longstanding rumors to rest.

Iron Man 3 Extremis Soldier Minimates How Extremis May Affect Other Characters in Iron Man 3

It’s been expected for some time that Tony Stark’s ‘Iron Legion’ wouldn’t just be used to take on a single enemy in the Mandarin (Ben Kingsley), but an opposing army, and that Aldrich Killian and Maya Hansen (Rebecca Hall) will play instrumental roles in granting Tony his new ability to interface with technology, control his armor telepathically, and operate dozens of suits simultaneously. Thanks to the description of the ‘Extremis Soldier’ Minimate spotted by Art Asylum, we’re able to guess where Dr. Killian and the Mandarin cross paths:

“The second [figure] is an Extremis Soldier, who comes packaged with Iron Patriot and will be available at comic shops and specialty stores as well as at Toys “R” Us. These super-strong operatives are shown receiving the Extremis treatment in the trailer, and the Minimate will come with a removable vest, a pistol, and interchangeable hair pieces to create different looks.”

We pointed out the Extremis injection scene in our Iron Man 3 trailer analysis, and this description backs up our assertion of the virus being used to supply the Mandarin with soldiers. What wasn’t featured in the trailer was a look at Dr. Killian himself receiving the treatment, which still might be a key part of the film’s climax.

Iron Man 3 Extremis Soldiers Screenshot How Extremis May Affect Other Characters in Iron Man 3

For now we’d say it’s just as likely that Killian finds himself double-crossed by the Mandarin, not imbued with super-strength. And lest anyone think that the ‘super-strong’ description is official, we’d remind all that Minimates has not provided the descriptions themselves, as both of these figures are likely the ones still ‘under embargo’ on the company’s website. That being said, it’s hard to think that the virus could produce any other results in multiple non-Stark patients.

If that is the case, and the Extremis Virus injected into the subjects seen numerous times in the Iron Man 3 trailer turns regular people into super-strong soldiers, then the presence of Stephanie Szostak in Killian’s laboratory raises even more questions. Whether she’s playing Wasp, or a female War Machine, or Ellen Brandt as a ‘Man-Thing’ tie-in, then her reasons for enlisting in Killian’s research are a total mystery.

There is a shot in the trailer of an unidentified figure wearing a lab coat and using a cane; could this be Szostak, or even Killian himself suffering from an ailment only Extremis can cure? Director Shane Black’s take on Extremis as not nanobots, but a means of taking human beings to the next step would be attractive to anyone, especially if they had a physical handicap. Super-strength would also help explain the trailer’s shot of Szostak forcing herself on Tony, but we don’t expect he’ll be interested.

Iron Man 3 Stephanie Szostak Questions How Extremis May Affect Other Characters in Iron Man 3

Assuming the soldiers blessed with Extremis are super-strong (even if the procedure renders them minions of the Mandarin/Dr. Killian), then Pepper Potts (Gwyneth Paltrow) being seen strapped into the same machines could have massive ramifications for Iron Man 4, 5 or 6.

Tony makes it clear in the trailers that his desire to keep Pepper safe quickly becomes his top priority, assuming someone else in his life falls victim to his super-persona. So if Pepper does become equipped with heightened skills and strength, it would bring that fear to a fitting – and promising – close. If Iron Man 3 was also a story of Pepper Potts going from being a target for her boyfriend’s enemies to a superheroine, it would help explain what Marvel’s Kevin Feige meant when saying this movie was “all about” Pepper.

Such a story twist would open up the future for the Iron Man franchise, and guarantee one of its biggest names a larger role in ‘Phase Two’ and beyond, since the comic book version of the character eventually suits up and fighting alongside Tony and the Iron Patriot (Don Cheadle). Gwyneth Paltrow is the odd man out when it comes to blockbuster enthusiasm, though, so we would bet that if special effects and her character are going to collide, it’ll be in Iron Man 3‘s climax.

Iron Man 3 Pepper Extremis How Extremis May Affect Other Characters in Iron Man 3

Perhaps more curious than either the ‘Extremis Soldier’ and partially-armored Tony Minimates comes the incredibly promising (but likely totally misleading) ‘Tony Stark (Cowboy Disguise)’ figure. It seems like a long shot for Tony Stark to travel west and try out gun-slinging with a threat like the Mandarin roaming, but our extended look at Iron Man 3 did show that Tony would be spending some time relatively incognito.

Our money is on the ‘cowboy disguise’ being useful in that same portion of the movie, since a cowboy hat is one thing we’d never expect to see billionaire genius tony Stark sporting in public. You know, the clothing on this figure does bear a resemblance to that being worn by Tony when Szostak’s character seems to ambush him. Ambush him in a rustic-looking kitchen, more specifically.

Could this be a case of a new-and-improved Szostak tracking down a de-powered Stark, acting on impulses that many women in the movie’s universe share? The evidence supports the idea, but her role as a villain or Extremis-fueled soldier makes almost all of the previous rumors of her character’s identity seem suspect.

With the number of super-powered enemies and Extremis running rampant, the storytellers are going to have plenty of loose ends to tie up by the film’s end. So once Tony gets the point about what being a hero really means, perhaps he realizes that Extremis isn’t the path forward, and erases it from the world. Whether it will leave its mark on Pepper – or Szostak, since she won’t be pleased with Tony’s rejection – remains to be seen.

Iron Man 3 Minimate Tony Cowboy Disguise 570x377 How Extremis May Affect Other Characters in Iron Man 3

We won’t know the answers to these questions and others until the movie arrives. Or, apparently, until the next batch of Iron Man 3 toys are released. What do you think of the mounting evidence for a colossal finale? Do any of our theories seem more promising or likely than others? Feel free to share your thoughts in the comments.

Iron Man 3 is directed by Shane Black based off of his and Drew Pearce’s screenplay, and stars Robert Downey Jr., Ben Kingsley, Don Cheadle, Gwyneth Paltrow, Guy Pearce, Jon Favreau, Rebecca Hall, William Sadler, James Badge Dale and the voice of Paul Bettany.

Iron Man 3 releases May 3, 2013.


Follow Andrew on Twitter @andrew_dyce.

Source: Minimates, Art Asylum (via CBM)

Follow Andrew Dyce on Twitter @andrew_dyce
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  1. I always read “extremis” what is that? can anyone explain it short?

    • virus/healing-scab like

      for tony-armor controlling

    • Extremis is an injectable virus from the comics, engineered to give a human a bunch of powers. It gets in the hands of some bad dudes, Tony injects himself with it to gain an advantage, and it allows him to summon his armor to his body by thought.

      • Also, the suit plugs into his mind so he can move faster and have faster reflexes.

  2. follow the toys…

  3. Yep… was at the Lego store last weekend and they had the Iron Man 3 sets with some of them featuring Extremis Mini-Figs. Also, one showed Pepper Potts in an Iron Man suit.

    Man… Lego has to put up some spoiler warning signs!

  4. Not looking forward to this!,,,Bring on Thor 2!!!!

    • Not looking forward to this!? I’m super excited to see Thor II as well, but that doesn’t take away from my anticipation for seeing this film. It just gives me more to look forward to. These next few years are gonna be EPIC!! (IM3, THOR2, Wolverine2, Capt America2, Antman, AmazingSpiderman2, GOTG, Avengers2, and freaking MAN OF STEEL)

      …saved the best for last

  5. @TheLostWinchester
    I have to agree with you there, I feel like Thor 2 will be a better movie, IMO.

  6. Extremis seems too be a smart direction to go inn from here if they stick to the story for a at least the next film Anything after that — we’ll see.

  7. I still have a feeling we could still see killian turn into MODOK, its odd I know, but we do have AIM, a means to do it(either through extremis or other means), and even if it isnt killian, he could be introduced, and it would make interesting for a persisting long term annoying villian, who doesnt get killed….

    • Pffft Nicholas Cage for MODOK all the way. Ah yes, giant Nick Cage head acting insane… Pure gold

      • I hope you are kidding, tell me you are kidding.

        • NO, Nathan Fillion for MODOK! /s

  8. Pepper super powered by Extremis becomes Mrs Marvel maybe?

    • There’s no way they would change it so much that she becomes Ms. Marvel. More likely she’d become Rescue.

  9. The more I read about this movie, the better it sounds!!! I cannot wait for this to come out!!!!

  10. One word, bazinga!

  11. OMG the big twist is that Tony travels back in time?! Could it be a homage to Cowboys and Aliens, which was directed by Jon Favreau? An inside joke? :D

    • Travels back in time? What are you talking about exactly?

      • I have no idea either but I did instantly think of the Two-Gun Kid.

  12. Kleenex please.

    • Dude, this is nothing to cry about.

  13. It all sounds great. A lot to pack into a movie, but I’m sure it will be awesome.

  14. Looks like a “Smokey The Bear” hat. I can’t see Tony as Woody from toy Story; he’s more Buzz Lightyear. But while we speculate, in the meantime, bring on Radioactive Man!

  15. From what I seen in the trailers and what I have read on the various sites, this movie looks to be one of the best of the Iron Man trilogy. What is most amazing is just watching these characters grow and learn, facing increasingly difficult challenges along the way. In the beginning, Tony only fought to protect himself and his company, but now he realizes that the stakes are higher, that people close to him are in danger at the hands of the Mandarin. Its a big journey. And despite the criticisms of the past movies, we must know that without them, we would not get the opportunity to experience such a masterpiece of a movie, which Iron man 3 deems promising to be so.

    • Well the second was terrible… so it only really has the first to compete with.

  16. those are the most detailed legos ive ever seen

  17. So, I don’t know if anybody else noticed this in the trailer, but in the end scene where Tony and Rhodey are talking about having back-up – Tony is wearing an A.I.M. shirt. How freaking awesome is that?

  18. Gwen looks pretty hot all distressed in that black bra…

  19. The Mandarin is using the Extremis to create an army of Super Soldiers?

    I guess that explains the tattoo on the back of his neck of Captain America’s shield…

  20. @ Ken and Dazz: my comment was a little joke about one of the figures having a cowboy hat. It’s also mentioned in the well written and researched article. :)

    • You think only people in the 1800s wear cowboy hats? I did read the article unlike a lot of people.

  21. @ Ken: no I don’t think that only people in the 1800′s wear cowboy hats. My silly statement was not meant to be taken so seriously and was a weak joke that connected with the setting and time of Cowboys and Aliens.

    • I realize you were making a joke but it didn’t seem to work that well. Don’t worry about it too much, we’ve all made a few cracks that fell flat.