Virginia "Pepper" Potts is a fictional character, a supporting character of Iron Man in the Marvel Comics Universe. She first appears in Tales of Suspense #45 (September 1963) and was created by Stan Lee and Don Heck. In 2007, she joined the Fifty States Initiative under the codename Hera, and after being given her own suit of armor by Tony Stark, assumed the codename Rescue in The Invincible Iron Man #14.
She is portrayed by Gwyneth Paltrow in the Iron Man film trilogy.
Fictional character biography
Pepper, originally in the secretarial pool, gets her job by fixing an accounting mistake made by Stark himself. Pepper is originally infatuated with Tony and responds to the attentions of Stark's chauffeur and assistant Happy Hogan with caustic remarks. This, almost immediately after her first appearance, coupled with Stark's growing affection for her, puts her in a love triangle between Stark and Hogan. Pepper is for a time interested in Iron Man, unaware that he and Stark are the same person. However, she eventually falls in love with and marries Hogan, eloping with him in Tales of Suspense #91, though that relationship isn't without its troubles.
Pepper and Happy.
Pepper and Happy eventually leave Stark Industries settling in the Rocky Mountains and then finally in Cleveland where they adopt children after being unable to conceive, and disappear from the main Iron Man storyline. After being kidnapped by Stark's rival Obadiah Stane, Pepper tells Tony to stay out of their lives. At an unspecified point during their absence, Pepper and Happy divorce. After Tony Stark's return from the Heroes Reborn universe, Pepper and Happy join Tony at his new company Stark Solutions and once again become core characters. After some time, Happy and Pepper once again became involved and remarry, eventually considering conceiving a child to supplement their adopted children. At this point, Tony and Pepper's relationship has a brief rekindling during trouble in Happy and Pepper's marriage. Pepper eventually does conceive, only to lose the baby at the hands of Stark's former lover and enemy Ayisha.
After Happy sustains massive injuries in a fight with Spymaster during the Civil War story arc, Pepper requests that Tony turn off Happy's life support. The final pages of Invincible Iron Man (vol. 4) #14 shows the apparent death of Happy; it is debated as to whether Tony actually complied with Pepper's request as the only link between Happy's heart failure and Tony is the fact that they are side by side in the panel.
After the events of the superhuman Civil War, Pepper joined the Fifty State Initiative as a member of 'The Order', a government sanctioned superhero team operating within California. She assumed the moniker of the Greek goddess Hera and used advanced computer hardware and prosthetics to monitor and coordinate the team's missions. Upon the absorption of The Order into the Initiative, Tony Stark offers her a job on the special projects team at Stark Enterprises, which she accepts.
The Invincible Iron Man
Pepper Potts resumes her activities as personal secretary of Tony Stark, in a manner reminiscent of Gwyneth Paltrow's portrayal in the Iron Man feature film, constantly hinting at some sexual tension between herself and Tony, though neither act on it beyond flirting. However, this abruptly comes to an end when Ezekiel Stane, son of Obadiah Stane, causes an explosion during a party hosted by Stark, and Pepper, unable to flee, is trapped under debris and wounded by shrapnel. Suffering a concussion, damage in almost every internal organ, some degree of deafness in the right ear, and pieces of shrapnel embedded in her chest, she's far too weak to withstand a prolonged surgery, so Tony Stark embeds a strong magnet (similar in appearance to the arc reactor of the movie) in her chest, essentially turning Pepper Potts into a cyborg dependent on keeping her chest magnet engaged to stay alive like he was once. Pepper survives the less invasive procedure, but, as it was for Tony, it's uncertain when, or if, the magnet can ever be removed. Later, Pepper's body is further enhanced with new cybernetics and upgrades to the magnet. At first Pepper is shattered: even though the bionics saved her life and gave her back her full mobility and her hearing, Pepper feels herself losing her humanity and becoming a weapon, until Tony is forced to admit that Pepper's bionics is not Starktech in origins: instead, it comes from Danny Rand's design for a new battery, and is not weapons-based at all. Comforted by the humanitarian origins of her tech, Pepper embraces her cyberization, exploring her new magnetic powered abilities, like gliding over magnetic lines.
When Tony is blamed for the Skrull invasion, S.H.I.E.L.D. is taken over by Norman Osborn, replaced with H.A.M.M.E.R. and Tony and Maria Hill are fired, along with the rest of the S.H.I.E.L.D. employees. When Tony and Maria go underground, Tony makes Pepper the new CEO of Stark Industries, telling her that the company needs to be shut down, and that he only trusts her to do it in his place. She reluctantly accepts, kissing Tony once before she goes. Later, in a fit of frustration over everything that is happening, she inadvertently discovers a secret room in Tonys office, which contains a suit of armor that he made especially for her. When Osborn issues an arrest warrant for Tony and sends teams to seize all Stark Industries facilities, Pepper uses this suit to escape just before she herself is arrested. While Pepper practices using her new suit, a large earthquake hits, and she rescues a group of students just before their school collapses on them. This causes her to be detected by H.A.M.M.E.R., and Osborn orders a large commercial jet near her to be shot down, just to see what her suit is capable of. Pepper successfully catches the plane, but when she brings it to the nearest airport she is arrested by H.A.M.M.E.R. agents. Pepper is later being interrogated by Osborn at a H.A.M.M.E.R. facility.
Pepper insists that everything she has done and all the components of her armor are legal and that anyone has access to the design specs. Pepper also continues to insist that she doesn't know where Tony is. Osborn threatens her with incarceration and loved ones if she interferes with his search for Tony, tries anymore heroics, or flying above a certain limit. After being freed she takes off to find Tony herself, ignoring Osborn's warning. Before beginning her search for Tony, Pepper meets with the doctor who implanted the magnet in her chest. He tells her it is functioning as expected and that her body has fully accepted and adjusted to the implant. Jarvis interrupts, saying there has been an accident and the victims are "calling for immediate rescue." This inspires Pepper to adopt the codename "Rescue," and after helping the victims, she heads to Russia, where she finds Tony. His mental condition has apparently deteriorated, as he does not recognize the suit he gave Pepper, and attacks her, believing she is an enemy sent by Osborn
Powers and abilities
The cybernetic technology implanted in Peppers chest caused a number of physical changes to her body: it fixed her eyesight (she needed glasses before), increased her metabolism, made her stronger, improved her reaction time and reflexes, and increased her IQ by about 25 points. The electromagnet has also been shown to give her some control over the magnetic fields around her, once allowing her to levitate briefly.
Peppers suit, the Mark 1616, appears similar to the Iron Man and can fly. It contains an AI version of Jarvis to assist her and answer questions, and is ideally suited to her biology and cybernetic enhancements. However, in respect to Peppers wishes that she not become a weapon, the suit contains no weapons whatsoever, and is instead designed for heavy rescue and recovery. It contains repulsor technology, and electromagnetic field generators allowing her to suspend and tow massive loads.
In the Amalgam Comics Universe, DC Comics' Green Lantern and Marvel's Iron Man are combined to create Iron Lantern. Iron Lantern is secretly Hal Stark, owner of Stark Aircraft, a developer of experimental aircraft. One of his test pilots is Pepper Ferris (an amalgamation of Pepper Potts and DC's Carol Ferris). Like both her DC and Marvel counterpart, she is involved in a love triangle, this time with Stark and his chief mechanic Happy Kalmaku (an amalgamation of Marvel's Happy Hogan and DC's Thomas Kalmaku). When Pepper comes in contact with a mysterious alien gem, she is transformed into Madame Sapphire (a combination of Marvel's Madame Masque and DC's Star Sapphire). Pepper Ferris first appeared in Iron Lantern #1 (April 1997), published jointly by Marvel and DC. She was created by Kurt Busiek (script) and Paul Smith (art).
In the alternate universe of Heroes Reborn, Pepper and Iron Man are lovers, although she can also be seen in a relationship with Happy Hogan. Stark is forced to leave her unexpectedly and without explanation, as his very presence in the universe will endanger her life and the lives of everyone else.
Virginia "Pepper" Potts can be seen in the Ultimate Universe during Ultimates 2. She and Happy (with whom she appears to be in a relationship) can be seen monitoring Tony when he uses the armor. She can also fire missiles.
Appearances in other media
The Invincible Iron Man
Pepper Potts has appeared in the Invincible Iron Man segments of the 1966 animated series, The Marvel Super Heroes voiced by Peg Dixon.
Iron Man: Armored Adventures
Pepper in Iron Man: Armored Adventures.
Pepper Potts appears in Iron Man: Armored Adventures, voiced by Anna Cummer. When she first met Tony she displayed an almost encyclopedic knowledge of his life, she explains that she knows this by reading her father's FBI files from their investigation into the death of Howard and any possible involvement by Obadiah Stane. She along with Tony and Gene Kahn are kidnapped by Killer Shrike and Unicorn at the behest of Count Nefaria. Pepper shows a great deal of bravery, constantly annoying their captors to the point that they consider killing her just to make her stop talking. Tony asks if Pepper can get into her father's files and find any info on Donnie Gill a.k.a. Blizzard. She finds the info and reveals that Donnnie was lying to Iron Man and is out to kill Obadiah Stane. In Whip Lash, she looks for information about Mr. Fix after her father was almost killed for doing the same, which causes her to be tracked by the weapon dealer's henchmen. She's saved by Iron Man, and find out he and Tony Stark are the same. In Iron Man vs. the Crimson Dynamo Pepper has joined "Team Iron Man", she researches Ivan Vanko and discovers that he has a wife and son. When Tony and Rhodey conclude that Tony can't defeat Vanko in combat they determine that only his wife and son can calm him. Pepper runs out and retrieves them by impersonating a CIA agent, although badly Mrs. Vanko bought the ruse. Her dream is to get into Law Enforcement of some kind, wanting to join S.H.I.E.L.D. so she could arrest people all over the world.
This version of Pepper is very hyperactive and rarely stops talking : where when she asked why he never told her he was Iron Man, Tony replied because she was never quiet long enough for him to tell her; her father also comments in a half-asleep state that she talks too much. Rhodey refers to her as a little on the crazy side. She appears to be a friend of Rhodey, but Tony had never met her until he started going to school with them. In most of her appearances she is consuming a large amount of soda, possibly the cause of her hyperactive behavior. It is also revealed in Whiplash that her given name is Patricia instead of Virginia. Pepper is also apparently quite melodramatic, when Tony keeps putting off their science project she tells him that they will have to make a volcano out of clay and baking soda and will have to leave the Tomorrow Academy out of shame. In Field Trip she is shown to be a capable strategist, able to concoct a plan to get the Tomorrow Academy to go on a field trip to Stark Industries, surprising Rhodey how her plan actually worked. Tony also says, "Pepper if you go evil, we're all in trouble". Something she cheerfully agreed.
It is hinted in Ancient History 101, that she might have feelings for Tony, being in a bit of a dazed state after he caught her when she was falling, and shown in Whip Lash when after finding out that Tony was Iron Man, she looked to be more comfortable holding onto him. We may see another hint in her dislike of Whitney Stane, who might be interpreted as jealousy. Where in Hide and Seek, she wears the Makluan Ring that Tony just gave her as a wedding ring. It can be believed that Rhodey knows of her crush on Tony, asking if she was jealous when Whitney was flirty with Tony. Where in this series, she is more of a friend to Happy, as she tries to get Rhodey and Tony to come to a party he was having (even though it was pretty bad).
The Invincible Iron Man
Pepper Potts appeared in The Invincible Iron Man voiced by Elisa Gabrielli, with an apparent British accent.
Gwyneth Paltrow portrays the character in the 2008 Iron Man feature film. She serves a central role in the film as Stark's personal secretary, who is impressed by her employer's improved attitude and moral stance upon returning from his imprisonment in Afghanistan. She also plays a crucial role at the film's climax when Stark battles Iron Monger. The movie alludes to Tony's constant dependency on her (to where he even needs her to remember his social security number) and hints towards a sexual tension between the two, though neither act upon it. As for her relationship with the film version of Happy Hogan (played by director Jon Favreau), aside from a brief shot of them talking in one scene the two characters do not speak to each other in the film.
In the novelization of the film by Peter David, there is a scene where Happy speaks to James Rhodes during Stark's disappearance, and he notes his concern about Pepper's emotional state. The film's novelization states that her given name is really Virginia, and that "Pepper" was a nickname bestowed upon her by Tony when they first met. While working as an accountant she discovered a small error he made on a document, and when she went to show him personally Tony's bodyguards did not want to let her into his office. She threatened to pepper spray them (though she really had none) to get inside. Amused by the obvious lie, Tony lets her in and looks at the mistake, hires her as his assistant on the spot, and calls her Pepper from then on.
Paltrow is to reprise the role in Iron Man 2. In the film, Potts will be promoted as Stark Industries' CEO.
information downloaded and copied from wikipedia 07/27/09