Age of Ultron: The New Frankenstein Myth?

Ryan Leston
UK Movies Writer

After Marvel released the first ‘Avengers: Age of Ultron’ trailer, the comparisons with Pinocchio were obvious. But it seems there’s a more sinister literary reference at play…

It’s no secret that there are already plenty of references to the classic tale of Pinocchio in ‘Avengers: Age of Ultron’… and we still haven’t yet seen the movie itself. But from the eerie rendition of Disney’s classic theme tune to the references of puppets and strings, we have already been beaten over the head with the symbolism.

But it seems that Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein may have also inspired the ultra-slick Ultron.

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During an interview with Entertainment Weekly, director Joss Whedon mused on the nature of artificial intelligence… and gave us a glimpse of what makes Ultron tick.

“It’s our new Frankenstein myth,” he said. “We create something in our own image and the thing turns on us. It has that pain of ‘Well, why was I made? I want to kill Daddy’.”

From the trailer alone, it’s clear that Ultron has a few daddy issues… and with a desire to wipe the human race from the face of the Earth, it seems he might also have some anger management problems.

Still, at least he doesn’t have an army of drones at his disposal…

Of course, Joss Whedon is keen to tout Ultron as a whole new brand of evil A.I… and he gives us a small hint at Ultron’s state of mind in the ‘Avengers’ sequel.

“I don’t remember seeing an artificial-intelligence movie where the robot is bonkers—the most emotionally unstable person in the film—and who has the knowledge of 3,000 years of recorded history and who’s a pouty teen, all at the same time.”

A Pouty teen? I have to admit, I didn’t really see that coming… but I suppose it makes a lot of sense. Ultron has been created as a fully-functioning A.I. with the knowledge and wisdom of the human race, but is still a relatively new construct.

And assuming that Ultron learns at a much faster rate than the average human being, it’s easy to see how an adolescent A.I. might strike out against its creators.

But will Ultron start hanging around in parks drinking cheap cider and jeering at old ladies on the bus stop? For now, we’ll have to wait and see… but thankfully, I think he’s got a bit more class.

‘Avengers: Age of Ultron’ heads to cinemas on 24 April 2015.

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Picture Credit: Marvel