After surviving a plane crash, young Danny Rand is trained by monks to wield a great mystical force that he uses to fight an ancient evil society.
Iron Fist (Season 1)
Created by Scott Buck
Starring Finn Jones, Jessica Henwick, Tom Pelphrey,
Jessica Stroup, David Wenham, Rosario Dawson,
Wai Ching Ho, Ramon Rodriguez, Sacha Dhawan
Based on characters from Marvel Comics
I have never seen so many fans unite to tear something apart like the way the Marvel/Netflix watchers did to Iron Fist. It's not that bad, folks. It may not be the best that Marvel/Netflix has to offer, but that's only because the other three are Daredevil, Jessica Jones, and Luke Cage. Compared to those three epic shows, Iron Fist is a little lukewarm. However, if you judge it on its own merits and as its own self-contained show, it's a good watch. Most of that credit goes to Finn Jones's performance as Danny Rand. He goes a long way towards making this show not only watchable, but entertaining.
The story is a bit hard to follow if you're not a hardcore comics nerd, but from what I've gathered, Danny Rand is the heir to the Rand Enterprises fortune who is raised by warrior monks after his plane crashes over the Himalayas. The monks teach him the mystical arts of kung fu and bestow upon him the powerful force known as the Iron Fist. Using this power, he returns to New York 15 years later to hunt down and destroy a cult of evil ninjas called the Hand. You may remember them from season two of Daredevil. With The Defenders coming soon, I think it's safe to say the Hand are going to be a big part of it. The weakest part of this show are the relationships between Danny and the other characters. Besides Danny, almost everybody else on the show (except Rosario Dawson) is insufferable and obnoxious. The fight scenes are impressive, but nowhere near as good as the other shows' choreography.
Another big problem is a lack of a serious villain. This season alone goes through three big bads by the end. Compared to Wilson Fisk, Kilgrave, and Cottonmouth, David Wenham's Harold Meachum just isn't all that threatening. Neither is the returning Madame Gao from Daredevil or the new not-leader of the Hand, Bakuto. Yet, with all the problems surrounding the show, there's something about it. It's got charm and likability. You want to see Danny succeed and you want to learn more about him. That's why I think the character will work much better in a group setting. Think about it. We all love Hawkeye in The Avengers, but does he really deserve his own franchise? One could argue the same with Iron Fist. Ultimately, I would label the first season a win based off of performances and an exciting premise, but its annoyingly one-dimensional characters and horribly anticlimactic ending nearly trash its score. If the show wants to survive another fan onslaught, it better step up its game big time in season two.