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'Iron Fist': How Marvel's New Show Reinvents a 1970's Kung-Fu Superhero

18 March 2017

Iron Fist has no such saving grace. With them, it borders on unconscionable.

Beyond his martial arts prowess, Iron Fist can summon his energy into a glowing hand capable of shattering walls.

And when housed in a series that's as shoddy as Iron Fist is, it all begins to seem like a rather cruel and witless act of aggression.

In other words, it'll be a while before we see Davos' full villainy in action, with Dhawan revealing that he's not actually in the series until its ninth episode (with only six screened for critics before the series' release), and that the majority of his storyline will take place in a planned second series following the upcoming Defenders crossover between Iron Fist and fellow Marvel/Netflix series Daredevil, Jessica Jones and Luke Cage. You'll know it's coming when his fist glows. This makes it impossible for him to start over, and fans will probably be unsure as to why he even wants to now.

Each of these movies sees a white character "saving" people of colour; inspiring them to do better, "selflessly" defending them, enabling and elevating them, and so on and so forth.

Jones, so bratty and appealing in his brief stint on Game of Thrones, is stymied by his character's American accent.

I like him, but Jones is clearly expecting a grilling.

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When asked about what changes Danny undergoes between the two shows, Jones offered this: "By the end of Iron Fist, you get a better idea of where his head's at". Eventually, anyway. The first few episodes of the show aren't sure what to do with Colleen, so they have her participate in underground cage fights and lecture some urban teens. All this while, he tries to convince his old friends, siblings - Joy and Ward Meechum - who have now taken control of this parents' legacy company, that he truly is their old friend, Danny.

Or, she just puts on a good front after recovering from her mind-controlled ex-wife attempting to literally give her a death from a thousand cuts, which wouldn't be particularly out of character.

Marvel have, in the past, been criticised for a lack of strong female characters. As is, she's a rudderless cipher, an amateurish approximation of a cool, icy businesswoman.

USA Today's Brian Truitt agreed with my view that Jessica Henwick as Colleen, the principled and badass master of a struggling karate dojo, community leader, and potential love interest for Danny, is a standout new character. It's as if the whole thing is improvised by a level-one UCB class who were explicitly told not to be amusing. Iron Fist was always going to be the toughest of the Defenders shows to get off the ground, but the early reviews are less than stellar. They're all plodding and empty, too little plot stretched out over too many episodes. Then came "Marvel's Jessica Jones", a sarcastic P.I. with super strength and the gift of flight.

Marvel completists will no doubt feel compelled to check "Iron Fist" out, but the show plays like a relatively weak cog in its otherwise pretty well-oiled machinery. Not Netflix itself-just this iteration of Marvel world-building, slapdash and dismal as it is. However, when a long-destined enemy rises in NY, this living weapon is forced to choose between his family's legacy and his duties as the Iron Fist. As children, they would eat the candy together, every single color: except the brown ones.

Wenham: Well, I think the thing is more from Danny's perspective.

'Iron Fist': How Marvel's New Show Reinvents a 1970's Kung-Fu Superhero