Photo Courtesy of IMDb
Story by Tim Jenkins / Contributing Writer
Marvel’s latest collaboration with Netflix “Iron Fist” debuted on Friday, March 17, and has proven to be just as binge-worthy as Marvel’s other Netflix shows.
The show begins with Danny Rand/Iron Fist (played by Finn Jones) returning home after being presumed dead for 15 years. After struggling to convince his former friends, the Meachums (played by Tom Pelphrey and Jessica Stroup), that he is who he says he is, he begins a mission to reclaim his family’s company and stop the Hand.
Much of Danny’s origins are left unexplained until later in the season with little hints dropped periodically as flashbacks. The series offers explanation as to how Danny became Iron Fist. This assists in adding a sense of mystery to his abilities, especially once we see him use his “iron fist” towards the end of the second episode.
Having lived in a monastery for the past 15 years, Danny is often quite naive when it comes to the world to which he has returned. Many of his actions, both as Danny Rand and Iron Fist, are done without much thought, which often gets him into trouble. As his mission progresses, he is forced to face challenges that prompt him to question what he thought he knew or believed. This aspect creates some interesting character development.
The show’s subplot that follows the Meachums is often just as interesting as the main storyline, particularly the story revolving around Ward and his father. While not as exciting as watching Iron Fist fight assassins and members of the Hand, the subplot serves to help develop these characters, especially Ward.
Viewers that have kept up with Marvel’s other Netflix collaborations like “Daredevil,” “Jessica Jones,” and “Luke Cage” will see two very familiar faces in “Iron Fist.” The first of these is Claire Temple (Rosario Dawson), who has appeared in all of Marvel’s Netflix shows at some point. Temple’s primary role is to stitch up the heroes after a rough fight, while also helping to guide them on their mission. The other recurring character is Madam Gao (Wai Ching Ho), who formerly appeared as an ally to Wilson Fisk in “Daredevil.”
The Hand (introduced in “Daredevil” as the main villains of season two) also return as the main villains of the show.
While it focuses on its own storyline, “Iron Fist” also helps to connect the various shows, preparing the audience for the next series “The Defenders.” “The Defenders” will see Daredevil, Jessica Jones, Luke Cage, and Iron Fist coming together as a team, similar to The Avengers.
Overall, this is a fun show. It switches stylistically between a comic book story and a kung-fu movie fairly seamlessly. While the first few episodes are slow at times as Danny struggled to prove his identity, the story quickly picks up around episode four. Like the other Marvel Netflix shows, the characters are interesting and well developed, and the subplot keeps viewers watching to see what happens next even when the main story feels slow. Once again, Netflix and Marvel have created a hit.