Functional Order: Se-Fi-Te-Ni
Perceiving Functional Axis:
Extroverted Sensing (Se) / Introverted Intuition (Ni)
Tony has zero interest in being hands-off with his Iron Man suit; he literally straps himself into it, throws himself into combat, and learns “on the fly” while tackling real-world situations and issues. Like many Se-doms, he has to get a “feel” for it and then responds accordingly, adjusting his actions each time to get the results he wants. He is skeptical of others without hands-on experience, and reluctant to turn responsibilities over to them. Prior to finding “a purpose” as Iron Man, Tony is a playboy, caught up in indulging all his sensual whims (gorgeous women, fine cars, expensive parties, etc). Each situation is an “experience” for Tony, who goes straight for the quickest solution to resolve problems. He uses the world, connecting to and finding its possibility, without difficulty or hesitation – and nearly gets himself killed multiple times in the process. For the most part, he lets Pepper run his companies, preferring to “play” instead of “work.” His inferior Ni shows in his short-sightedness with Ultron, as well as his lack of foresight when it comes to supporting the Superhero Registration Act (a bill that could backfire on “their kind” sometime in the future). Tony tinkers with inventions, but all of them pertain in some way to Iron Man after awhile. He fixates on this one project, obsessively refining and perfecting the suit. He reaches singular conclusions, a sense of what he believes is going to happen or what will “fix” the problem, and refuses to change his mind, which leads to conflict with the other types. It’s ONE WAY, all the way. Under stress, Tony becomes convinced of catastrophic impending events, and disaster around every turn. He becomes so caught up in this vision, he can’t see any other possibility or solution, showing the fatalism of inferior intuition.
Judging Functional Axis:
Introverted Feeling (Fi) / Extroverted Thinking (Te)
Until the sales of weapons impacts Tony directly, he doesn’t care about them as a moral issue—and once he reaches a moral conclusion it is wrong, he refuses to further make or sell weapons, which threatens the company’s bottom line and sends them into a financial hole. Tony’s Fi is unhealthy, in the sense that he often sticks to his own moral beliefs or feelings, without considering the fall out (refusing to sell weapons means closing his businesses, forcing hundreds of thousands of people into unemployment; he disregards Cap’s feelings about Bucky, focusing on his own intense need for revenge; being ignorant of, and dismissive of, Peter Parker’s hero worship of him, and not realizing he cares until “the kid is gone”). Tony’s emotions bottle up, sometimes over years (his anguish over the last argument he had with his parents, finally exploding with rage when he finds out who killed them). But in End Game, Tony takes to heart what he learned from his short encounter with his father (“I never learned not to be selfish”), and sacrifices himself for the greater good. Tony often relies directly on his extroverted thinking to get things done. He is overbearing and interested in “controlling” others. Tony believes humans need monitored and protected, and the Avengers need a check… government oversight. He sees a logical problem (the mass damage they have caused) and goes straight for the obvious solution (a contract forcing them to abide by rules) rather than engaging in creative thinking or finding loopholes (unlike Captain America, whose Ti has analyzed the problems of governmental oversight). When Steve refuses to agree and sign the document, Tony avidly tries to force him into obedience. Tony often loops through Se/Te, creating brutal frankness in conversation, harsh insults and criticisms of others, and a tendency to disregard personal feelings to accomplish a task (ignoring Steve’s feelings about Bucky, and leaving Peter to “figure out” his Spider-Man suit on his own). Financial gain has little motive over Tony, who can put together business proposals but prefers to leave running companies to Pepper.
Prior to becoming Iron Man, Tony lived a life of excessive pleasure-seeking and irresponsibility; he left Pepper to run his company, while he womanized, bought expensive toys, tinkered with his inventions, and “played.” Even as Iron Man, he maintains a strong sense of humor, a desire to avoid any kind of pain or confronting his own issues, and avoidance behaviors. Tony doesn’t want to face the painful truths of his life, so he seeks escape from them through distractions. When he does face them, he disintegrates into harsh, moralizing, rigid Enneagram 1 tendencies (his actions throughout Civil War, his belief they need “policed” and his harsh criticism of himself and others). His 8 wing is often domineering and/or aggressive. Tony doesn’t want to be controlled, and he doesn’t want others in charge. He fights Thor for the right to lead. He challenges Captain America. He wants to beat Bucky Barnes to death for killing his parents. He is easily angered, reactive, and aggressive.