We see in The Avengers that Tony Stark is not a Team Player, he does not play well with others.

In every movie, including the Iron Man trilogy, he behaves a little rudely with others.

Why is Tony Stark so arrogant in every MCU movie? Was this done on purpose by the writers to keep his character consistent with the 1st Iron Man movie?


4 Answers 4


Tony Stark is arrogant in every MCU movie; it's a key part of his character. In fact lots of male MCU protagonists are arrogant (i.e. Star Lord and Dr Strange as well as Stark).

Tony Stark is arrogant because he is, and has been for all of his life, incredibly, incredibly rich. That makes you believe that you can do anything (or at least, get anything done for you) because, usually, you can do anything with enough money.

Secondly, Stark is an exceptional inventor/mechanic. That's clear from the fact that he was able to make the first Iron Man suit almost solo (only had a little help from Yinsen), not to mention that he was trapped in a cave with only a bunch of scrap to work with [this happens during the first part of the Iron Man movie]. This would also bolster anyone's self-esteem: even without his money, Tony could still make a good livelihood and possibly start up a new company using his skill and a bit of innovation, should Stark Industries fail (which is extremely unlikely).

Stark's heroic successes as Iron Man also probably improved his opinion of his own awesomeness. (This may have been part of the reason for him revealing to the world his secret identity at the end of the first Iron Man film.)

It is worth mentioning, however, that Stark's big ego decreases somewhat as his story progresses in the Marvel Cinematic Universe and he realises that his selfishness causes serious problems for others. (This realisation can be seen throughout the Iron Man and Avengers films, to the point where, by Avengers: Infinity War, Stark's narcissism has almost disappeared - except when he comes into conflict with Strange, since they are both arrogant leaders who don't take kindly to being told what to do.)

  • 5
    Good answer, although if put some references could make this answer even better
    – Vishwa
    Sep 9, 2018 at 11:22
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    Also, the movies depict the comic character very carefully; he was and is really that conceited the whole story arc. In the comics when something which he thinks should work, he gets very upset ("That's impossible"), he rejects often help and if you really want shock him, simply outsmart him. It was very funny when Dr Doom (who is exactly as smart and arrogant as Iron Man) and Iron Man were fighting, so much egomaniac weight at once should have exceed the load rating of the earth crust. Sep 15, 2018 at 16:57
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    (in a cave, with a box of scraps)
    – OrangeDog
    Sep 17, 2018 at 13:38
  • It should be noted that the same applies to Bruce Wayne. Who, incidentially, manages to be super rich for his entire life and an inventor without being a completely unbearable asshole. :D
    – Damon
    Mar 13, 2019 at 9:33

The first flashback scene from Iron Man should tell you everything you need to know. He was a Wunderkind; he showed exceptional brilliance from a very early age, he grew up in privilege (which would make him a person to be envious of among his age group peers) and his parents were frequently away, so he was most likely a bit of a brat to his nannies or caregivers. Tony Stark was basically just that; a spoiled brat. He was a scientist/inventor with a professional athlete's attitude of "Yes, I'm better than you." And because he thinks he's better than everyone else, he believes he's the leader of The Avengers and so should and can make decisions without their input.


His father was brilliant but also an egomaniac and that was during the period of War so his genius was even stronger than Tony's & Tony's also an alcoholic which would give him mood swings and he does do the right thing like guiding the missile in the thing when in back into space when it benefits the whole group but it also, the Pepper Potts long story shows his shortcomings with other people and he tends to think of himself first and how his self-preservation would benefit all of the team and civilians but it's a step by step process beginning with himself. The missile he got it back into space Would have been self-sacrifice on his part but he is an arms dealer and weapons builder in the beginning of the MCU which if I sold weapons that would cause mass destruction I probably have an attitude to "the Jerichoč

  • I just happened to read the paragraph you put on your profile (which is not where you should be responding to comments). You don't seem to understand what this site is for. It is not a discussion forum or fan site or a place to chat - it is an objective Q&A site. Your answers get downvoted because a) your writing style is very poor b) you present your own opinions instead of referenced facts c) you refer to Marvel comics when every question is instead about the MCU films d) you are often just plain wrong
    – OrangeDog
    Sep 17, 2018 at 13:37

I believe I read that he is based on the aviator/inventor Howard Hughes who definitely in real life was sort of abrupt and, being very sure of himself, might seem arrogant to others. I suspect that many successful people in technology would indeed seem arrogant -- a more recent example is Steve Jobs.

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    Is there any chance you might be able to remember where you read this? If you could provide a reference, it would really improve the quality of your answer.
    – F1Krazy
    Nov 9, 2019 at 16:38

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