OK, now even I'm confused (shaddup!). And yes, this is about Iron Man.
There are, near as I can tell, 5 different Iron Men characters that Marvel is propagating around the pop culture landscape.
1) Ultimate Iron Man. As seen in the Ultimates, and in the Ultimate Avengers DVDs, this is Ultimate Tony Stark being all Ultimatey and stuff. Since nobody but me read Orson Scott Card's Ultimate Iron Man series, I can't really say that the fact that he's essentially a genetically engineered living brain (I'm not kidding) plays into the character as a whole (and it's certainly not mentioned anywhere outside that series, so there).
2) 616 Iron Man. I don't need to say more about this than I have already, except that if you've ever wanted to see Iron Man killing his friends, acting the government stooge, and being manipulated by public opinion into declaring war on Captain America and Spider-Man, then this is the Iron Man for you. Mind you, this is supposed to be a good guy, to hear Marvel tell it.
3) Marvel Adventures Iron Man. The all-ages comic portrays a "classic" Iron Man, mostly devoid of personality but gets enough of the heroics part right to feel not as off as the rest of these guys. Plus, he plays "FunStation" with Spider-Man, as opposed to trying to repulsor a hole through his chest. And you wonder why I read this comic.
4) The Invincible Iron Man, Marvel's latest animated movie, which looks more like Crouching Script, Hidden Budget than anything else. Go view the trailer here. I watched it, and all I know about it is that it'll probably have the Mandarin, lots of Chinese stuff, maybe some Fin Fang Foom, aNOTHER new origin for Tony, and camera angle from behind and beneath a pair of bare ladies' legs looking at Tony.
(The weird thing is that the trailer pauses on that leg shot and cuts the music; I guess the intended effect was to make you stop and say, "Whoa! Don't forget, the Iron Man, he likes the ladies!", but the actual effect was to make me say, "Damn, that's a little creepy and fetishistic. Is this safe for work?"
I don't think this is going to be very good.
5) The Iron Man movie, which allegedly has aNOTHER tweaked origin, and God knows how it's going to portray Ol' Shellhead. Although I'm probably stupidly optimistic.
So, I'm confused. Which version does Marvel want me to like? Do we need 5 versions of Iron Man running around? And why don't any of them feel right to me? Is it that hard to write Iron Man? Doesn't anybody at Marvel have any back issues? David Michelinie's phone number? Len Kaminski's e-mail address? It can't be this hard.
I know, I know, quit my bitching. I'm lucky they haven't killed him off ye--- oh, wait. We haven't seen Civil War #7 yet.
Sometimes I hate being an Iron Man fan.