There's a report going around the Internet this morning that the Iron Man costume seen at Comic-Con International (and pictured at right) is not Mark VIII, as most fans would have expected following the debut of Tony Stark's Mark VII armor during Marvel's The Avengers earlier this year, but in fact Mark XLVII (that's 47 to you and me).
Yeah, apparently in the year between The Avengers and Iron Man 3, Tony Stark will have tried out forty-seven iterations of the armor--which probably clarifies why there are all those shots of him standing around in a giant room full of armor suits.
But that's not all--Latino Review is reporting that:
"The Extremis-enhanced bad guys under direction of Ben Kingsley’s Mandarin villain are going to be too much for Tony to handle on his own, so he thinks ahead, thinks big and has a plan. Tony’s about to go out and fight some bad guys when he mentions the Mark XLVII to Pepper Potts. Pepper asks what happened to the other forty and Tony just smiles.
"From the cockpit of Mark XLVII, Tony is able to control multiple armors in battle. We over here at LR have been vaguely aware of an action scene where Tony was going to control multiple Iron Man suits (presumably they look similar to distract his enemies as to the location of kill-able Iron Man Prime), but the number 40 seems…awesome. 40 Iron Men."
Forty Iron Men might explain the tons of villains that have been cast so far, which up until now was starting to seem so excessive that we were beginning to wonder whether Marvel was throwing out casting misinformation just to mess with nosy reporters who they don't like to have too much plot ahead of time. And it gives a fight scene that's potentially even bigger in scope than the final battle in The Avengers.
There's also those rumors that Paltrow might armor up as Rescue to consider--and escalating this film and making it essentially an "Armor Wars" feature film sheds new light on rumors that surfaced in August that the final Invincible Iron Man arc before Marvel NOW! might be a follow-up to those fan-favorite stories.