(Note, if you haven't seen Avengers: Age of Ultron yet, then mild SPOILERS are to be found below, right from the get-go...)
So. There's a whole lot about Avengers: Age of Ultron that's incredibly easy to love, whether it's Hawkeye's sudden transformation into the greatest Avenger of all, the countless Easter eggs, or even that big reveal.
When it comes to the movie's main villain, though - Ultron himself - easy to love rapidly become 'easy to confusing both love and hate simultaneously, despite yourself'. Which isn't too surprising, since he's voiced by king of snark James Spader, and comes complete with a fully pose-able range of snappy one-liners.
His origin, however, is a little less clear-cut. So much so, in fact, that:
It Seems As Though Ultron Has a Secret Origin - One Too Dark to Make Explicitly Clear in the Movie...
As far as the movie openly tells us, y'see, Ultron - along with all of his dastardly actions - is very much the responsibility of Tony Stark and (to a lesser extent) Bruce Banner.
They, after all, are the ones who create him, inadvertently releasing his peculiarly quippy brand of world-threatening, megalomaniacal artificial intelligence into the world.
Which is...bad - but ultimately well-meaning, so they kind of get a pass on it.
The thing is, though, there's another side to Ultron's origin that Avengers: Age of Ultron doesn't delve all that deeply into:
Why is Ultron the Way He is?
Specifically, why is Ultron - an A.I. created in the image of the calm and restrained J.A.R.V.I.S, and by two superheroic super-geniuses - both murderous and incredibly snarky. He is, after all, a very unusual sort of deadly robot, possessing as he does both very utilitarian goals - ridding the world of war at any cost - and a seemingly endless supply of witty retorts.
Well, as it turns out:
There's a Reason Ultron's the Way He is
And, as it happens, it might just put the blame for all of his actions squarely back on the shoulders of one man.
Ultron's Brain Patterns Had to Come From Somewhere
Or, rather, to be based on someone's. Much as J.A.R.V.I.S. seems to have had his thought-patterns based on Tony Stark's childhood butler (and Peggy Carter's pal) Edwin Jarvis - who, being incredibly capable, endlessly polite and ludicrously loyal is exactly who you'd want to base an A.I. on - Ultron is seemingly based upon an actual person.
Now, back in the comics, that person was Hank Pym, who invented him...
...and, crucially, ended up basing his creation's mind on his own - to put it mildly, dysfunctional - brain patterns.
In Avengers: Age of Ultron, though, Hank Pym isn't set to appear until this summer's Ant-Man, and Ultron is instead created by Tony Stark and Bruce Banner.
And, it seems...
Ultron's Brain Patterns Were Based on...Tony Stark's
After all, why else would Ultron have not only Stark's flair for the overblown and dramatic, but also his endless need to make goofy jokes?
Add in a shared desire to protect the world, no matter what, the penchant for going too far in order to do so, and a burning need to constantly create new robots to play with - and you've got yourself a pretty accurate model of Tony Stark...in android form.
Crucially, there's even a moment where Ultron completely freaks out when it's suggested he's like Tony - screaming "Don't compare me to Stark".
So, it seems, we can safely add Daddy Issues - and a sub-conscious self-hatred - to the list of similarities.
Why is That So Bad, Though?
Well, the thing is, if Ultron really is based directly on Tony's brain patterns, then not only was Stark indirectly responsible for all the destruction Ultron caused - but the implication is that all of that world-threatening evil was an extension of Stark's own mind all along.
Or, in other words, it implies that if left unchecked, Tony Stark will eventually become a tyrannical dictator, whose attempts to improve the world (and protect it from itself) through logic and suits of armor will eventually end up causing huge amounts of harm.
Or, in other, other words...
Age of Ultron Just Set Up Captain America: Civil War Way More Than We Thought
Anyone else want to bet that by next summer, it'll be easily enough to sum up Civil War in two short sentences? Specifically: "Tony Stark Fails to Learn the Error of His Ways, Gets People Killed. Part Two."
Because that sure as heck seems to be what Age of Ultron is hinting at...