Archive for March, 2017

Iron Fist is a Flop

Thursday, 23 March 2017

       It’s to my shameful laziness I’m watching Iron Fist, which in addition to the now-standard whining about racial casting choices was panned by critics for being shitty and boring.  The critics were right, I’m only two episodes in and doubt I’ll watch a third.

     All of these Marvel Netflix series face the same challenge:  turn a 2-hour movie into 20 interesting hour-long episodes.  There have been 4 such attempts so far: Jessica Jones, Luke Cage and two seasons of Daredevil.

      Daredevil features a popular lead character, talented cast, good action, solid chemistry and interesting villains.  Jessica Jones had characters made interesting by their flaws and a terrifying villain.  Luke Cage mostly sucked, dragging-out a razor-thin plot, but still had solid leads, style and an unexpected great soundtrack.

      Iron Fist has nothing going for it.  Danny Rand is Danny Bland.  He looks like a doughy smelly hippie and walks around New York barefoot, which is the least bizarre thing about him.  His backstory reads like it was invented by an 11-year-old half-remembering Green Arrow and Batman:  Danny Rand, age 10, survives a private plane crash over the Himalayas which kills his billionaire parents (for now, we never see their bodies and since comic book characters pass between life and death like saloon doors they could return at any time.)  He is found by magical martial arts monks who train him to become the Iron Fist, whose sole purpose is to stop a shadowy evil organization called The Hand.  (Let’s hope he can do it, since he claims he’s the only warrior who can stop them.)   

     Now, 15 years later, adult Danny returns to NYC to claim his family business, but instead of going to the media to announce his triumphant return to the land of the living, Danny the Dirty hippie saunters barefoot into his family’s company building and asks to see his father’s former partner or the partner’s son.  The receptionist does what any sane person would do and alerts Security so the audience can get a sneak preview of Danny’s magical martial arts prowess as he wends his way up to the CEO’s office. 

     The villain (or at least antagonist) is a standard corporate businessdick with slicked-back hair.  He and his sister were the children of Daddy Rand’s partner.  In flashback we learn Slick, who was a few years older than Danny, was a major-league asshole and bully.

     The grown-up Slick, now CEO of Rand Corporation (isn’t that a real thing?) is first dismayed by the sight of a filthy hippie in his office and then greatly alarmed when the hippie claims he’s Danny Rand, which if true means Rand owns the company.  Slick and his semi-sexy blonde sister both refuse to believe it, and here’s where the story first shits the hammock:  who can blame them?  “Danny Rand” shows up with no evidence, not even one story or remembrance only the three of them would know.

     Instead of another fight, Danny merely leaves to hang out at a park among tree leaves (barefoot) and a wise White homeless bum who spouts a few semi-poetic lines about society before OD’ing. Next Danny bumps into an Asian woman posting flyers for her martial arts dojo and asks for a job (neglecting to inform her he’s a martial arts master).  Naturally she tells him no, so next Danny breaks into his former childhood home, a brownstone owned by Slick’s blonde sister.  Instead of talking to her when she comes home he flees, only to confront her the next morning outside on a busy street where she can cry for help.  Again, Danny provides zero evidence of his true identity, but he does magically flip over a speeding cab, which only confuses Blondie.

    Really I should stop here, I’ve given ample examples of why Iron Fist doesn’t work.  The writers strove to give Danny Rand a good-natured or well-meaning/innocence vibe but he just comes across as retarded.  In Iron Flop: Part Next we’ll continue this anal-sys written because I’m too lazy to write anything else.

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