I like the idea of a suit of armor…the idea that something put on can make you feel stronger, can allow you to do things that being in normal clothes won’t allow. Maybe that’s why Frank digs spacesuits so much. Sure he’ll tell you it was a childhood thing, that he coulda, woulda. shoulda tried to be an astronaut… but maybe it’s not. Maybe, that spacesuit will make him stronger… at the very least make him FEEL stronger.
When you feel stronger, you’re more confident, more willing to accept risk. The astronauts who walked on the moon knew that. The suit would protect them from the harshness of space, but there was a chance, how ever slim, that it could fail. The suit made you invincible, but it didn’t make you immortal. It let them go above and beyond, be super human… but then it brought them back. It was an extension, not a replacement.
I’m sure firefighters, police officers, soldiers and anyone else who wears a uniform feels something similar. The material really, is irrelevant to the feeling that it instills.
The Iron Man suit makes Tony Stark stronger. It allows him to do things the flesh alone could not. It also is a symbol of the guilt he feels for building things whose sole purpose is to kill (or protect, depending on which side you’re on). The suit makes him something the human is not. It’s better than the human it encases.
I don’t need a suit for myself though… I’m pretty terrific already… why would I ever want to cover all this Bob up?