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Avengers: Age Of Ultron photos confirm James Spader won’t just be a cardboard robot

Entertainment Weekly has released the first official images from Avengers: Age Of Ultron, offering you your first look at new characters Quicksilver and Scarlet Witch (if you didn’t stick around after the credits of Captain America: Winter Soldier), as well as glimpses of returning favorites like Iron Man, Black Widow, et al., standing around, crouching, and enjoying house parties.

That the superheroes can afford to just kick back and make a super-mess likely has a lot to do with the film’s plot, which as EW reveals—in what may constitute a spoiler to anyone who doesn’t want even the barest hint of plot—picks up on the tail of Iron Man 3 by having Tony Stark looking to leave superhero-ing behind. He does so by creating Ultron, a “self-aware, self-teaching, artificial intelligence designed to help assess threats, and direct Stark’s Iron Legion of drones to battle evildoers instead.” Presumably, Ultron will also pick up the mess from the Avengers’ little get-togethers.

Of course, on top of Ultron getting tired of being sticky from carrying out everyone’s supposedly empty beer bottles—including the ones that Hawkeye shoved his bent bottle caps into LIKE A DICK—he also soon becomes convinced of his own superiority, and of the need to wipe out all troublemaking, coaster-eschewing  humans. And playing Ultron is an actor whose smug characters have long barely masked their own genocidal urges, James Spader. Fortunately, EW’s cover has finally assuaged some fan fears, revealing that Ultron will not just be James Spader in a cardboard box with some “dials” drawn on the front. No, it looks like Joss Whedon decided to spend some money.

Still, as evil as Spader’s Ultron is meant to be, I’m not sure how we’re supposed to buy him as a convincing villain looking like that. Where’s the louche insouciance, the air of flippant disregard—the rakishly unbuttoned shirt collar? How are we supposed to know this guy’s a major asshole?

Much better.

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