Billionaire Danny Rand (Finn Jones) returns to New York City after being missing for years, trying to reconnect with his past and his family legacy. He fights against the criminal element corrupting New York City with his kung-fu mastery and ability to summon the awesome power of the fiery Iron Fist.
"Iron Fist" was the final lead-in before the highly-anticipated "The Defenders" premiered in summer 2017, but the reviews were pretty bad. The series only holds a rotten rating of 17 percent on Rotten Tomatoes. Marvel fans clearly watched the show regardless—especially before "The Defenders" premiered.
But season two has some buzz around it. Watch the trailer to the second season below.
GQ's Joshua Rivera wrote the show's first season was a flop:
It's kind of astounding how far out of its way Iron Fist seems to go to avoid being interesting. We spend three episodes watching Danny unsuccessfully trying to convince people that he is Danny Rand returned from the dead, and the strongest running thread in the first half of the series has nothing to do with anything remotely superhero-y—it's all just corporate machinations.
Vox's Alex Abad-Santos clarified why the first season of "Iron Fist" was so darn bad. It wasn't the critics just being harsh. The show's star, Finn Jones, got defensive about the negative reviews of the show on Twitter in 2017, saying people are only complaining about a white male playing "the greatest martial artist in the world" because Donald Trump is president. Critics and online detractors accused him of missing the point. Detractors hated the series because yet again—a white savior got to appropriate and whitewash an Asian culture.
Abad-Santos gave some good context about the interesting comic book and character, but he also said:
It’s a fun, weird story, but also one that traffics in stereotypes, Orientalism, and the white savior trope.
It’s easy to assume that those egregious and uncorrected stereotypes are the reason the show is under scrutiny. But its problems run deeper and more fundamental than that — stuff like writing and story structure.
Wired's Graeme McMillan wrote the character Danny Rand is white in the comics, but that should not mean it's the only version of Iron Fist.
But that doesn’t mean that Danny Rand is the only Iron Fist in Marvel’s comic book mythology. As early as his second comic book appearance (in 1972’s Marvel Premiere #16), there was the implication that Iron Fist wasn’t an individual’s identity as much as a shared mantle that had been worn by different people throughout history.
It would take decades for that idea to come into focus, but when it did—courtesy of the 2006 Immortal Iron Fist series by Ed Brubaker, Matt Fraction, and David Aja—it revolutionized Iron Fist as a concept, and as a superhero identity.
Detroit Free Press' Julie Hinds was one of the few critics who gave the first season of "Iron Fist" a good review, writing:
If you love Netflix's previous Marvel adaptations, Iron Fist probably will feel like homework in advance of The Defenders. The pacing is reminiscent of the leisurely vibe of the 1970s series Kung Fu, to which it has some obvious parallels.
Some fans argue the character Iron Fist looks much cooler after appearing in the second season of "Luke Cage." Screenrant's Thomas Bacon wrote:
Crucially, the Iron Fist of Luke Cage Season 2 is very different to the hero we've seen before. This Danny Rand was much more relaxed and philosophical; he's found his own place of balance, and he spends a lot of his trying to encourage others to find inner harmony too. The character is still recognizable, but he's clearly dealt with his inner demons since we last saw him, and there's no trace of the strange, off-beat anger management problems that were featured in the past. Danny's focus is on protecting New York, and you get the profound sense that this mission is what has brought him peace. Tying into this, that single episode uses the Iron Fist power quite liberally; at one point, he literally shows off his glowing fist as part of a joke.