Official Warner Bros. Website BioEdit
- The manipulative, ambitious government agent sent to investigate the Iron Giant. With sleazy charm and a secret agenda to boost his own career, Kent is hot on Hogarth’s trail to get the information he needs. Believing he has proof to the Iron Giant’s existence and eager to make his reputation, he calls in the military to protect the townspeople from the threat he perceives in the Giant.
Kent Mansley is a slender man, with fair skin, auburn hair and blue eyes. Throughout the film, he generally wears a grey suit with either a normal coat or dark grey trench coat and a dark grey fedora with a black tie and white collard shirt. While at the Hughes home, Mansley also wears a pair of yellow suit pants with a green blazer and red tie instead of his grey suit and black tie.
Although suave and well mannered on the outside, Kent Mansley is a paranoid and ruthless agent with a hunger to further his own career. Scripted as a lowly agent in Washington, Kent has spent most of his life as an unnoticed federal government agent working in a cubicle. With the possibility of a "monster" in Rockwell, Kent hopes to expand his career by becoming a hero by destroying the creature lurking in the woods of Maine. Through his charm and charisma alone, he is able to fool both Annie Hughes and General Rogard into trusting him, proving his power of manipulation. Like many villains, Mansley is relentless in his quest to seek his ultimate goals however, contrastingly he is also afraid. Mansley mainly exemplifies the era of Cold War fear over the creation of the Soviet Sputnik 1; he does not care who created the Giant or whether it is actually dangerous: it must be destroyed for the safety of humanity. His paranoia is also his greatest weakness however, as his own foolishness causes him to launch a nuclear missile toward Rockwell and its citizens in his attempt to destroy the giant.
Mansley also appears to be rather aggressive as well. As time passes, Mansley's techniques become more vicious in desperation to find the giant. Mansley not only harasses Hogarth for his knowledge of the giant but openly looses his temper and corners Hogarth on two separate occasions. After finding a photograph of the Iron Giant, Mansley, even traps Hogarth in the shed by his home and interrogates him, while his mother is away at work. He even threatens to take Hogarth from his mother to pry the information he needs out of him, before cruelly knocking him out and trapping him in his room to prevent him from helping his friends. His cruelty is only rivaled by his cowards though. Even after dooming the city of Rockwell, Mansley refuses to take note of the towns fate and tries to escape Rockwell in order to save himself, leaving the rest of the citizens to fend for themselves and likely perish.
Kent Mansley is a handsome, clean-cut, and generally good-looking man in his mid thirties. Well above the average height of other characters, he is thin and relatively large compared to Dean. Whilst he is well built, he is not as broad-shouldered nor as muscular as his employer, General Rogard. It is unknown how physically formidable Mansley actually is, however, his shear size and strength enable him to throw the driver out of a jeep, and easily overcome the much younger Hogarth. Like almost every character in the film he has fair skin and auburn hair similar to Hogarth and his mother. He also has a very pronounced chin and light blue eyes. Throughout the film, he generally wears a grey suit with either a normal coat or dark grey trench coat and a dark grey fedora with a black tie and white collard shirt. While at the Hughes home, Mansley also wears a pair of yellow suit pants with a green blazer and red tie instead of his grey suit and black tie.
Role in the filmEdit
Soon after the Iron Giant destroys the Rockwell electrical substation and its surrounding overhead power lines, while trying to consume the steel structures supporting the station, Federal Government Agent Kent Mansley is first seen in Rockwell the following morning. Earlier revealed to Dean, Earl Stutz called the government about the “invader from Mars” he experienced in his boat weeks earlier,as well as multiple strange occurrences around the town, prompting the government's action.
Immediately arriving in his official government vehicle on the site of the station to investigate, Kent exits his vehicle puffing on his pipe and surveys his surroundings with a steely-eyed, square-jawed gaze, while introducing himself as member of the "United States Government Burea of Unexplained Phenomena" to the head electrical foreman, Marv Loach. Relatively uninterested in Marve, Mansley swiftly leads the foreman through the forest wall, to the wrecked station, while Marv admits he is unsure of the causes inexplicable damage incurred at the station. Cables, fencing, and jagged fragments of metal litter the ground around the pulverized walls of the station, as workers and trucks swarm through the site, carefully retrieving the scattered pieces of rubble. The foreman personally believes the devastation could not have been the result of a storm, and the way the towers are twisted, its as if they were bitten off the structures by some kind of “enormous beast”. Mansley spurns the thought of such a possibility, however, as he records the foreman's words. He sarcastically suggesting the destruction is the result of an aggressive escaped gorilla, rather than some massive creature as Marv suggests. Marv questions Mansley's department as a result, but Mansely reveals very little of his position; only that he is the government's response to unordinary occurrence such as the one at hand. No sooner does he finish his explanation of his department, Mansley inquires as to whether any eyewitnesses were present at the time of the event, but unfortunately there are no know known witness. Marv is able to afford Mansley a crushed bb-gun handle recovered from the incident, however, with the markings “Hog- Hug-” from a dumpster on the site. Marv confidently proclaims that with the U.S. Government overseeing the case, there must be something lurking in Rockwell, but Mansley scoff at the idea again, before heading back toward his vehicle.
Continuing to mock the foreman's belief as he approaches his vehicle, Mansley, seats himself in his car once more and places the bb-gun on the passenger only to discover, to his horror, that the passenger seat and roughly half his automobile has seemingly been ripped clean off. Terrified and panicked by the situation, the agent doubles back to the station, and quickly brings Marv to the site of his car. Unknown to Mansely, however, the rest of his automobile was taken by the hungry giant, the moment he left the vehicle to share his encounter with Marv, and the two are perplexed to find that his car has disappeared, leaving only a few parts and the bb-gun behind. Retrieving the small piece of evidence from the ground, Mansley takes the situation much more seriously, believing that there is a creature in the woods, and leaves the station.
Meeting at the Mayor'sEdit
Sometime after his visit to the power station, Mansley arrives at Rockwell City Hall. While there, Mansley proceeds to discuss the information from the night before with the mayor and his associates. According to Mansley a foreign object had been detected entering Earth's atmosphere off the coast of Rockwell, originally assumed to be a downed satellite or meteor. As a result of Earl Stutz' testimony and his own personal experience, Mansley believes that the crashed object is something very different than previously thought by the US Government. Mansley continuous to discuss details until the Mayor's office receives a phone call of a strange train crash nearby. Hearing the news, Mansley helps himself to the mayor's car, as his own has disappeared, and leaves immediately for the incident.
The Train CrashEdit
Not long after the Iron Giant is struck by a train, while attempting to repair the railroad tracks the very same night, Mansley visits the site of the train wreck to recover more evidence. Although there is once again little to no evidence of a machine or monster, one of the The Engineers (suffering from a concussion) confesses that he saw what appeared to be a “giant metal man” on the tracks before the train’s impact. Mansley, concluding that the incident is linked to the power station, asks for the nearest telephone and is directed toward the Hughes Home.
Meeting the HughesEdit
Soon after the train wreck, while Hogarth is attempting to smuggle the Iron Giant’s hand out of his house without his mother finding out, Mansley arrives at the Hughes home to use their telephone. Initially, Hogarth slams the front door on him, believing he’d see the giant’s hand behind him, however, after realizing the hand is gone, he opens the door to Mansley begrudgingly. His mother, Annie Hughes, kindly lets him borrow their phone, with which he calls General Rogard. After a short argument to the disbelieving general, Mansley is forced to hunt for more evidence to prove to the general that the “giant metal monster” does exist. Mansley leaves the residence shortly after however, he turns around after realizing the bb-gun is Hogarth’s. After return, Hogarth starts acting strangely (continuing to hide the giant’s hand) which draws suspicion from Mansley. Finally leaving, Mansley assures Hogarth that they will see each other “real soon”.
Spying on HogarthEdit
The next morning, it is revealed that Mansley has rented out the room at Hogarth’s house, much to Hogarth’s displeasure. With Mansley always present, Mansley keeps constant watch over Hogarth as Kent asks a few questions until Hogarth tries to leave the house. Unfortunately for Hogarth, Annie suggests he take Mansley with him to see the city sites. While visiting Eddy’s Rexall, after Hogarth shows Kent how to make a landslide (a chocolate bar called coca-lax crumbled and mixed with an ice cream sundae), Mansley begins to speak of the Sputnik and his fears of the thing lurching in the woods and asks Hogarth if he feel's safe. When Hogarth acts oblivious to Mansley’s obvious hint at the giant, Mansley explodes into a rage and corners Hogarth. However before he is able to interrogate further, he is forced to the bathroom by the coca-lax that Hogarth spiked his ice cream soda with.
Searching for EvidenceEdit
With Hogarth gone from his sights and coca-lax in his system, Mansley heads out into the forest surrounding Rockwell again to find more evidence of the giant's existence. Heading through the woods, Mansley talks with a farmer named Benny who shows him the half eaten end of his truck, a damaged silo next to his barn, and damaged trees on the west side of his property. Mansley takes notes on the destruction before his irritated bowels force him to use the farmers outhouse.
Traveling deeper into the woods, Mansley comes across the boulders and the uprooted tree that Giant had pulled from the ground, when Hogarth was tryign to teach him words. Mansley also finds then bent shut off switch from the powerstation that the giant had presented to Hogarth in gratituded, before his bowels force him to use a pair of bushes. After a long and exhausting evening, Mansley strikes a camera hanging from a tree branch…the very camera Hogarth took in to the woods while searching for The Iron Giant.
Later that evening, Mansley uses the bathroom at the Hughes' residence as a dark room to hang the drying photos from the Hogarth's camera. Turning over the pictures one by one, he comes across the picture Hogarth had taken of the metal pannel he set on the treestump in the woods to lure the giant. Flipping the next one, he uncovers the photograph Hogarth had taken of himself while waiting for the giant to appear. To his delight and shock, standing behind a smiling Hogarth, stands The Iron Giant.
That night, while Hogarth is putting his bike in the shed near his home, Mansley traps Hogarth and prevents him from leaving its interior, informing him that his "mom is working late tonight". Quickly forcing him into a chair and turning on a large light, Mansley is finally able to interrogate Hogarth without any distractions. Hogarth originally acts oblivious to his question and refuses to answer them, but is dumbfounded when Mansley reveals the photos from his camera. Now cornered, Mansley threatens to call in the US army to destroy the giant, but when Hogarth mocks him by asking what is stopping him, he lashes out, pushes the lamp off the the table, and furiously inquires the Giant whereabouts.
Becoming more devious, Mansley tells Hogarth that he can't protect the Giant and anymore than his mother. Threatening to remove him from his mother's care, Hogath breaksdown and tells Mansley that the Giant is at McCoppin Scrapyard. Pleased by recieving the information he's been searching for, Mansley tells Hogarth he won't have to worry about the incident they've just had because its only been a bad dream. He then uses a Choloform rag to knock Hogarth unconscious, and he puts him to bed.
Hogarth awakes later to the sound of Mansley speaking to General Rogard over the phone about the evidence he has uncovered. Trying to escape to warn Dean and the Giant, Hogarth runs into Mansley in the hallway, who his now done with the call. Rather coldly, he brags to Hogarth that the army will be arriving in the morning and forces Hogarth back into his room, where he discovers Mansley has nailed his window shut. Unable to leave the house to caution Dean, Kent plans to watch Hogarth until morning, and the two watch each other untill around three in the morning. The next morning, however, Kent awakes in horror to see Hogarth out of his bed, and a dummy inside of his bed. He quickly compose himself, though, as a rather irked Annie questions why the army is in their frontyard. Kent suavely tells Annie to call him Kent, before he, Hogarth, Annie, and the army head off to McCoppin Scrap.
Invading the JunkyardEdit
After the army arrives at McCoppin Scrapyard, Kent demands Dean to show him where the Giant is. Dean is undeterred which slightly concerns Mansley, and he becomes impatient when Dean stalls with a story in front of the door leading into the shed holding the Giant. Finally entering the shed with zeal and confidence, Mansley's face and composure quickly fall at the sight of the Giant, as it appears to be nothing more than a metal statue concieved by Dean. Infuriated, General Rogard harshly chastises Mansley outside the shed for wasting both his own time and the government's money for a worthless trip to Rockwell. Mansley is dismissed from his government position, and he leaves, defeated, with the rest of the troops before Annie leaves and Dean tells the Giant that the coast is clear.
Assault on the GiantEdit
While leaving Rockwell distraughtly with the military convoy, Mansley sees Dean and Hogarth travelling on Dean's motorcycle in the opposite direction. Suspicious of the pair, Mansley looks back toward Rockwell. To his surprise, he sees the Giant standing in the city and double takes, resulting him crashing his vehicle. Seizing his chance, Mansley call to the convoy that the Giant is attacking the city when the Giant is actually looking down at the citizens without causing any panic. Now awestruck and fearful, General Rogard listens to Mansley, prompting the convoy to head back to Rockwell.
Striking the Giant squarely in the back with a rocket, the US military roles back into Rockwell to destroy the unsuspecting Giant, under Mansley and Rogarth’s orders. Forcing the giant to flee, Dean tries to explain to Mansley that the Giant only acts defensively and Hogarth is in his hands. Kent tells Dean he will take care of it, but instead lies to the General that the Giant has killed Hogarth, resulting in the President of the United States and the U.S. Air force getting involved.
Soon afterword, the Iron Giant is blown out of the sky, and an excited Kent and General Rogard head off to check if the Giant is alive. While the Giant is down mourning the presumed death of Hogarth, Mansley takes the opportunity to strike the Giant, and orders the military to open fire. Enraged by the continued assault, the Giant reverts into its heavily armed mode and attacks the military relentlessly. Unable to defeat the Giant using guns, tanks, or battleships, Kent suggest to the General that they can destroy the Giant by using a nuclear missile on the nuclear submarine USS Nautilus (SSN-571). General Rogard asks why are they going to bomb themselves to destroy the Giant, however Kent thinks the Giant can be lured out of the town, then destroyed.
As the military is ordered to fall back and the missile is prepped to be launched, Hogarth (after regaining consciousness) brings the Giant back to his senses and realizes that they must show the military the Giant is not aggressive or destructive. Meanwhile, Annie tells them not to fire the missile, as her son is still alive, and Dean explains to General Rogard that the Giant is friendly and is only retaliating as a result of the military’s actions. Ever defiant, Mansley’s still asserts that the Giant must be destroyed and tells Rogard that Dean’s claim is a trick to avoid the missile’s launching. However, the Giant shows up holding Hogarth in his hands to prove that he's not a threat, and upon realizing that Hogarth is still alive, Rogard tells his men to stand down. Rogard attempts to have the launch aborted for good in order not to make the same mistake again, but Mansley on the other hand, still assuming the Giant is a threat to the town, refuses to stand down and instead snatches the radio from Rogard and orders the Nautilus to launch the missile.
Shocked and infuriated, Rogard angrily informs Mansley that the missile is targeted to the Giant's current position, which will result not only the Giant's death, but in the destruction of Rockwell and its entire populous, when the missile re-enters the orbit. Wishing to survive, Kent tells the General that they can duck and cover by telling him for a fallout shelter that they can use for safety, but the angry General tells him there is no way to survive the blast and tells him that they are all going to die for their country thanks to Mansley's foolishness. Finally humiliated in front of his fellow Americans and refusing to take responsibility for his actions and a note of the town's fate, Mansley snaps out by renouncing his patriotism and attempts to escape in a military jeep when throwing a driver out in order to save himself and leave the entire town to its fate by saying he wants to live. However, the Giant stops him by blocking his path with one of his hands, allowing General Rogard and his soldiers to arrest Kent for his crimes and treachery. Kent is never seen again for the rest of the climax after this, but he is presumably removed from his position permanently and imprisoned for his crimes after the Giant sacrifices himself to save the town from the missile.
- For more pictures please see Kent Mansley/Gallery.
- Although it is never mentioned in the film, Mansley is said to work in a small windowless office on Capitol Hill and his desire to catch the Giant stems from his want to further his own career.
- In the original script the Mansley was troubled by the pealing "Bureau of Unexplained Phenomena" emblem on his car and had to fix it manually, illustrating the neglect and insignificance of his position in the eyes of the government.
- Originally, Mansley was supposed to meet Annie Hughes at the Chat n' Chew Diner after overhearing the waitress saying Hogarth had told their children that he went to the power plant the night of the incident.
- Kent appears to have been originally scripted to woo Annie Hughes more than he does in the film to appear as the perfect father figure, to Hogarth's irritation.
- Rather than holding Hogarth hostage in his room like in the movie, the script originally had a scene were Kent spent “family” time with Annie and Hogarth where it is revealed that Hogarth’s father died in the Korean War and Hogarth goes to bed after arguing with Mansley.
- In an alternate ending, Kent was told by the General Rogath that he was “under arrest... ‘and all that that implies’” as a crack at his signature phrase.
- http://viooz.co/movies/3601-the-iron-giant-1999.html (Use at own risk)