Virginia "Pepper" Potts is the deuteragonist of the Iron Man film series, a supporting character in The Avengers film series and a cameo character in Spider-Man: Homecoming. She is Tony Stark's personal secretary, executive assistant, eventually girlfriend and later wife. She gained superpowers after being bonded to the Extremis formula by Aldrich Killian in Iron Man 3, but is cured by Tony. She later appears as the superheroine Rescue in Avengers: Endgame, utilizing a nanotech armor built for her by Tony.
Pepper Potts was created by Stan Lee and Don Heck.
Born sometime in May of the 1970s, Pepper graduated with a degree in business administration before working in the finance department of Stark Industries. After finding an error in Tony Stark's calculations, she rushed to Tony to correct the mark, forcing her way to see him, past bodyguards using pepper spray. Tony was impressed and hired her as his personal assistant, naming her Pepper as a joke.
Pepper evolves as a person over time from the events of the first movie. At first, it appears as if Pepper is a typical assistant as she is punctual, reliable, and claims to do everything that Tony needs of her. Despite knowing she is not the boss of Tony she is far from a pushover. Pepper knows that she deserves respect for all the hard work she does and even though it's not always delivered fully and sometimes drenched in sassy remarks, Tony never fails to show his appreciation for his assistant and friend.
Pepper is independent, intelligent, and sometimes even brazen in her work. Although she is nowhere near as smart as her boss she possesses a keen eye for detail and never seems to fail at a task given to her and as the new CEO of Stark Industries, she proved how capable she really was. She never pretended to approve of Tony's impulsive and promiscuous life-style but also never directly tried to break him out of it. It seems that were it not for her feelings for her boss she might have quit her job ages ago. In fact, Pepper showed a certain amount of jealousy and insecurity around Tony's intimate flings which is possibly why she treated them with such subtle disdain. She is also quick to panic during action-packed moments but is willing to be in the middle of them if she can protect Tony. Ironically, Pepper does not like violence and was shocked at herself for how violent her murder of Aldrich Killian was.
After Tony's run-in with terrorists and his transformation into Iron Man Pepper became less comfortable with her job as it involved a whole new level of danger for them both. Pepper expressed her concern for Tony's safety and was on the verge of quitting in lue of helping his new superhero duties, especially when she saw bullet holes in his armor, which was far more upsetting to her than the armor itself. She changed her mind however when she realized how genuine Tony's morals were in his deeds. Being an ethically strong person herself, Pepper's loyalty to her boss remained intact.
By the time of The Avengers, Pepper was less nervous about Tony's dangerous new life as they were romantically involved. However, Tony's obsession with building new Iron Man suits during Iron Man 3 had begun to irritate her. Even though their relationship was starting to become rocky Pepper still loved him and never tried to abandon him. Despite breaking up with him after he refused to give up the suits before Captain America: Civil War, she got back together with him in Spider-Man: Homecoming. By the time of Avengers: Infinity War, Pepper was still in a relationship with Tony where she become engaged to him. She was still concerned over his safety as she begged him to come home before she lost contact with him as he disappeared into space to stop Thanos from retrieving the Infinity Stones. When Tony was rescued by Captain Marvel, after Thanos succeeded in wiping out half of the universe's population, Pepper was relieved to see Tony alive and emotionally embraced him.
Pepper Potts is seen having a romantic date with Tony Stark at the top floor of the Stark Tower, but they're interrupted by the sudden arrival of Phil Coulson, who has to crash J.A.R.V.I.S.'s systems in order to get in the tower, since Stark is trying to close him outdoors. Pepper has befriended Coulson during their previous meetings, and asks him about his personal life, as well as convincing Stark to listen to him and to read what documents he's giving him. Pepper is well aware of The Avengers Initiative, due to Stark's impossibility to keep a secret, and she manages to convince her boss and boyfriend to help S.H.I.E.L.D. save the world from Loki Laufeyson.
Later, when the Chitauri have started their invasion, Pepper is on a private plane, safe from the battle. Stark, before sacrificing himself to destroy an atomic bomb sent on Manhattan, tries to call her on the phone, but she doesn't hear it and doesn't calls up.
After the battle, when the Avengers are disbanded and everyone comes back to his normal life, Pepper rejoins with Stark.
- “You are such a jerk!”
- ―Virgina Potts
Pepper is the new head of Stark Industries, and has moved in to live with Tony as his girlfriend. Aldrich Killian offers her a chance to work with him, but she refuses, sensing that Aldrich is evil. It turns out that her suspicions are correct, since Aldrich has been using the Extremis formula to create an army of superpowered henchmen, and he's the true mastermind behind A.I.M. and the Mandarin attacks. At the end, he kidnaps Pepper, wanting her to be his bride, and injects her with the Extremis formula. This ends up saving her life later, and she uses her newfound powers to help Iron Man defeat Killian. At the end, the effects of the Extremis formula are reversed, leaving her human again.
Rhodes first mentioned Pepper, when he asked Tony at the party if Pepper was coming. Later, when Stark and Thor are debating over which of their girlfriends are better.
In Captain America: Civil War, Tony mentioned to Steve that Pepper and him are on a break, having space due his duties as Iron Man.
Pepper appears in Spider Man: Homecoming, having gotten back together with Tony since the events of Captain America: Civil War. At the end, Tony gives Pepper a ring, implying a proposal of marriage. It's as of yet unknown if Pepper accepts the proposal or not.
Pepper first appears with Tony in the park before Stephen Strange meets the pair for the first time and asks that Tony come with him to discuss Thanos's arrival on Earth after Bruce was found by Doctor Strange and his younger pupil Wong, unable to turn back into The Hulk. Though she does not appear again, she is heard warning Tony to listen to her and not ignore her orders.
Pepper appears alongside the other Avengers at the beginning of Avengers: Endgame, after Carol Danvers rescues Tony Stark and Nebula. Following the Avengers' attempt at undoing Thanos' actions, only being unable to as he destroyed them, Thor kills him and they return home. Five years later, Tony has married Pepper and they have a daughter together named Morgan. Retiring to the countryside, Tony and Pepper have lived a peaceful normal life. After Scott Lang returns from the Quantum Realm, who proposes using his Quantum Tunnel as a time machine, Steve Rogers, Natasha Romanoff and Lang went to Tony and Pepper's house to request his help. Tony declines due to the fact that he finally had the life he always wanted. Pepper gives Tony her blessing to join the Avengers into reversing the Decimation, so that they could bring back those that have been lost.
Pepper would later join the other Super heroes in the Battle of Earth against Thanos' army, utilizing an armored suit created by Tony. Once Tony used the six Infinity Stones to eliminate the threat once and for all, Pepper reunited with her husband, who was dying of his wounds from the power of the Stones. She told Tony to rest as his family and friends were now safe. Pepper watched her husband die in peace, knowing he made the ultimate sacrifice.
Pepper would attend a funeral, with her daughter, as they and their friends and allies memorialized Stark by sending his first Arc Reactor in a lake nearby their house.
Pepper first appeared in "What If... Killmonger Rescued Tony Stark?", as she was seen at the press conference after Tony was rescued from the Ten Rings' ambush.
Pepper does not appear in the movie, but is mentioned by Happy Hogan. She continues to run Stark Industries and is raising Morgan after the loss of Tony. In the beginning of the film, Pepper signs a $500,000 check that Happy gives to May Parker's fundraiser, which is helping people who were displaced from their homes by the Blip.
Avengers: Earth's Mightiest Heroes
In "Iron Man Is Born", when Tony comes home Pepper informs him that HYDRA are attacking the United Nations. While Iron Man fought against HYDRA Robots, Pepper was concerned about Tony but Rhodey tells her Tony's armor is indestructible but Pepper is not concerned about the armor.
In "Some Assembly Required", Pepper waits with Hulk and the other Avengers so they know the Avengers Mansion. Later, Pepper informs Tony that Nick Fury wants a meeting with him.
When the A.I.M. attacked the Stark Tower, she was taken hostage by the Scientist Supreme. As Scientist Supreme had threatened to shoot her, she just knocked him out with her fists.
- Rachel McAdams was Jon Favreau's first choice to play Pepper Potts, but she turned the role down.
- In the comics, Pepper married Happy Hogan, but divorced not long after.
- The color of Pepper's Rescue armor donned in Avengers: Endgame may be a reference to the color of the dress she wore when she first danced with Tony in Iron Man.
- It's revealed in Iron Man 2 that Pepper is allergic to strawberries.
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