Iron Fist Review
This spoiler free review is based on the first 6 episodes of Iron Fist, season one.
Iron Fist is the 4th and final character introduction of Marvel and Netflix’s superhero bout, in the lead up to 2017’s The Defenders series. Following on from Daredevil, Jessica Jones and Luke Cage, here we meet Danny Rand (Finn Jones), a young heir to a fantastic fortune. 15 years prior to the current day, he and his parents were in a plane crash, one which he is the sole survivor. After being raised by monks, he returns to New York with knowledge in more than just praying.
There is an issue with Iron Fist, but it is a crucial one. That issue is that it is an introduction to a character that the general public might not know a whole lot about. Because of this, we must go through the motions of an origin story. Not only that, but Danny Rand’s origin is one we’ve seen many times before – young orphan who is due to inherit all of the money goes training in martial arts in a distant land. Sound familiar?
Because of this, the start to Iron Fist feels slow, repetitive and just a bit mundane. We’ve been here before. The necessary evil is a bit of a drag, but it is just that; necessary. We’ve been through so many origin stories at this point throughout the Marvel universe, it’s easy to get bored quickly. But when it’s out of the way, and Iron Fist starts to get going, there’s a lot to take in and enjoy.
The story really seems to take shape around episode 5 and 6, and seems more closely tied to Daredevil than any of the others. And, while the full extent of Rand’s powers are not yet realised, the Iron Fist we do see is entertaining. We get a now obligatory corridor fight scene, signature to the Netflix Marvel shows. The martial arts on display is a joy to watch, with those in the sixth episode being directed by RZA, a man who is more than adept at this task.
That said, the best fight scene is left for supporting character Colleen Wing (Jessica Henwick), a dog master and affiliate of Danny Rand. At one point in the series, she joins a fight club, and here is where we see her at full flight. Indeed, Henwick is one of the better players in Iron Fist, carrying scenes with her confidence and sheer arrogance in the role of Wing.
The role of Danny Rand was, when announced, contentious. But Finn Jones brings a light charisma to the role, a likeable young man who is at times a fish out of water, while simultaneously the big fish in a small pond. He makes waves instantly once back in his father’s company, and is ultimately a good guy. It’s why he’s the hero of the piece.
It’s tough not to root for Danny Rand over the course of these six episodes, but especially as the show really kicks into gear. As the fights become tougher, more real, and those he comes up against are more dangerous, there’s a lot to take in. It’s interesting, revitalising, and up there with what we’ve seen Marvel and Netflix put out already. At least from what we’ve seen.
It’s tough to judge something when you don’t get to see the finished article, and while the issues seem to be rectified from episodes 5 and 6, we can never know. It’s important to note that most of the Marvel shows tend to strike highest towards the end of their respective series. With that track record in mind, there can only be good things ahead for Iron Fist. Once you get past yet another origin story, we have yet another, interesting and exciting Marvel show to enjoy.
All 13 episodes of Iron Fist will stream worldwide on Netflix on Friday, 17th of March.