Revisiting the Marvel Cinematic Universe Part 7.5 – All Hail the King

Revisiting the Marvel Cinematic Universe Part 7.5 – All Hail the King

If there was one central theme to the complaining about Iron Man 3, it would be that his most nefarious villain, The Mandarin, was more or less reduced to a joke in the form of Trevor Slattery, an out of work actor who was a caricature and little more in the third Iron Man film.  I’ll admit, that was one of my complaints.

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All Hail the King, was a 13 minute Marvel One Shot that at least attempted to carry the mythology of the Mandarin to a different level, or at least make some assumption that Slattery’s use of the name didn’t necessarily mean that the real villain did not exist.  With Slattery (a minor celebrity) in prison, a reporter arrives to do a documentary on him, and ends up within the course of the short film, revealing himself as an agent of the Ten Rings, a terrorist organization first revealed in the original Iron Man film.

The name “Ten Rings” is obviously a pseudo link to the Mandarin as well, the popular villain known for his use of various rings, all with different super powers.  This secret agent of the terrorist group tells Slattery that he’s setting him free so he can meet the REAL Mandarin.

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The point of the short seems to be to settle fandom fears that the Mandarin in the Marvel Cinematic Universe is just a joke, and does a decent job setting him up as some insidious, sinister character, though even as Phase 3 is set to begin, we’ve never truly met the real Mandarin.  Will we?  Who knows, but with rumors seeming to point towards the Iron Man solo film franchise winding down, it becomes questionable as to whether or not we will ever see a true face off between Iron Man and who is arguably his arch villain.

There was plenty of humor infused into this One Shot, and an interesting cameo by a character labeled “White Power Dave”,who, interestingly, is played by Matt Gerard, the same actor who plays Melvin Potter in the Marvel Daredevil series.  One might look at that as a goof on Marvel’s part, however the character is so minor that it’s more or less a non-issue, I’d say.

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The best part of this short film might have been the cameo by Justin Hammer at the end.  I freaking love that guy.

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A nice short, I liked what it did for the Mandarin, but it doesn’t necessarily further develop the cinematic universe, and I would not consider it a “must watch”, even though it is the final One Shot that has been produced to date.

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