Bob Layton is a well-known name in the comic industry has been a part of reviving Iron Man—twice. It may be hard to believe but Iron Man was quite a boring character before Layton’s take on the character who added the much-needed snark to a standard Marvel character. In addition, he added “Rhodey” who is also known as War Machine to Stark’s regular occurring characters because “what billionaire doesn’t have a posse.” Layton has since moved on from the comic industry, but he still is on Marvel’s contacts list— “for the right price.”
At a panel at this weekend’s ComicCONN in Southeastern Connecticut Layton talked about his career and his current work in the film industry. Layton is a man who doesn’t pull his punches and since he wasn’t on Marvel’s confidentiality list there was a lot of information given about his work on Iron Man 2 and the recently premiered Ant-Man and the Wasp. Layton having been of the early publications of Ant-Man attended the premiere for the latest Marvel film a week and a half ago. He commented on the Iron Man villain turned Ant-Man villain and the end credit.
The end credit scene for Ant-Man and the Wasp, according to Layton, discusses why Lang was not present in Avengers: Infinity War. Layton discussed that is was something that will definitely entertain the fans while also cementing the role of his character. After this question, he followed up by stating why he created Lang at the time. Layton dove into the character trait where Lang was a single parent which at the time in comics was a trope that hadn’t been touched. What these two have in common may be nothing or they may be a clear hint on why Lang wasn’t in Marvel’s summer blockbuster. Cassie has gone on to become the hero Stinger in Marvel Comics, which could be a direction the MCU may head in later phases.
Layton also discussed the way the film works with the dual pairing instead of being an Ant-Man solo film. He said that the characters have been tied together in comic history so the extension of having that into the film franchise was a natural transition. The villain Ghost played by Hannah John-Kamen lived up to the characters in the comics and was one of the best parts of the film according to Layton. When asked about the reversal of genders of the character he commented that, “Feige’s superpower is gender swapping.”
From all accords, Layton enjoyed the film and with him being supercritical on Marvel properties this film should live up to Marvel standards. Layton criticized Shane Black and Iron Man 3 because “Black never picked up a comic” and turned it into something he can understand rather than a proper adaptation of the source material. He also mentioned that Ant-Man and the Wasp will be void of any of Edgar Wright’s social commentary which is not that surprising given Wright’s falling out with Marvel. Bottom line is that when a man that Robert Downey Jr. calls “more Iron Man than myself” says a Marvel film is good it’s hard to say otherwise.
Let us know your thoughts. What do you think the film reason behind Lang’s absence from Avengers: Infinity War is?