No, I TOTALLY saw him as an adaptation of Fin Fang Foom. He's got the dragon imagery, powers, fire-breathing... I loved it.unacomn said:Am I the only one that saw Killian more as Fin Fang Fum? The fire breathing, the dragon tattoos, the him "making" the Mandarin. (because his rings were from Fin Fang Fum's crashed ship)
In fact, I'm surprised so few "fans" have caught on that a huge number of characters are actually in the movie in subtle ways. Radioactive Man was the doctor operating on Tony Stark; Coldblood was Adrich's right-hand man; the overt Fin Fang Foom imagery with Adrich; the shoutout to Pepper as the heroine Rescue... even the President was a character from the comics given a new role in the movie's story.
Concerning the twist... I love it. And you'd think I'd hate it. But, no, I love it.
Yes, they turned Iron Man's Joker or Lex Luthor into a total joke... but it's a HILARIOUS joke. Yeah, I wanted to see The Mandarin as "the Mandarin" and not a fake, but at the same time they commit to it 110%. They knew it was ballsy, but once they said "we're doing this" you can see just how much fun and love they had in setting it up, manipulating Tony Stark (and the viewers), and then going into the grand reveal that Trevor's a total drugged-out moron whom Sir Ben Kingsly is playing with such sincerity that you can't help but go from hating him as a villain to loving him as a comic relief.
And I think it also creates a message that goes over some people's heads; "The Mandarin" totally exists, but not as a singular person but as a theme or an idea. It's as subtle as naming a villain "The Red Scare". It's not about him as a person, but what the title and figurehead represents. It's a surprisingly smart satire of our own views, where we "need" to pin a face to a crime, a face to an idea, a face to a terrorist organization. We need a Bin Laden or Saddam to give a form to our hate, a focus to our anger and fear, even if others are just as involved and culpable.
And that's what made the villain so great. He manipulates the whole world into focusing on some drunk, womanizing, drugged-out buffoon and convinces them that he's the threat while he goes about manipulating the war on terrorism to his own profit. He's a brilliant and smart villain (at least until his Bond-villain weaknesses start causing him to make some pretty silly decisions). My only major complaint is I wish we'd seen more of how he turned from idealized weak nerd into ruthless, power-mad terrorist... but I'll buy the "power corrupts" excuse. His weaknesses was that he changed himself completely, made himself rich and strong and ruthless, yet he was still hung-up on his insecurities from his past (Pepper and Tony, mostly).
I thought it was a great movie and a great twist. I even loved the ending with Trevor being arrested and him sort of realizing that he's inadvertently living his dream of becoming a sort of celebrity with the media and finding some measure of joy in doing so. It's pitiable yet still funny and clever.