A new Marvel Netflix show is out, and the major difference is that it is being panned by the critics. Now, I’ve ventured into the last three shows and have really joined their beginnings, but ultimately lost most of that enjoyment by the end. Let’s see how the beginning of Iron Fist compares.
Iron Fist s01e01: Snow Gives Way
writer: Scott Buck
director: John Dahl
I went into this episode partially expecting it to be a disaster. I have read that the acting is terrible, the plotting is bad, the fights are terrible. Nothing good has been said. So, maybe the bar has been set pretty low, but i came out of this episode pleasantly surprised. I enjoyed the few fights. Finn Jones has a weird quality, but that works for me. Sure, the Meachum family, who seem to be the bad guys, are all fairly bland. They aren’t even compelling bad business people, just jerky ones. I came out wanting to rush into the second episode, but not so much for the cliffhanger. That tease at the end was less interesting to me. I’m more interested in seeing Danny expand his community. And I want more Colleen Wing.
Spoilers Lurk Below
The bad news of this episode is the Meachum scenes. They are jerky people doing jerky things and pretty much acting like jerks. The reason they are doing so is business and money and things and blah blah and bored. I was mostly okay when it was Danny interacting with them, but when it was the all Meachum show my interest waned heavily. That, to me, was the weakest part of the show.
Which kind of surprised me because I have heard that the fight scenes were very poorly put together. But you know what? I enjoyed them. Sure, they are slower and not as intense as Daredevil. But I enjoyed that they were different. I like that Danny did not seem challenged in this first episode. I do hope there are some bigger fights coming up. And it is always possible that my enjoyment here is due to low expectations and that all the Luke Cage fights hinged around Cage rolling his eyes as bad guys wasted bullets on him.
As for Finn Jones as Danny Rand: Sure. Why not. I’ll admit that I found something odd about his portrayal. Not bad, mind you. But certainly odd. It seemed weirdly cheerful and yet troubled. I couldn’t decide if I liked it or not. And then something clicked. This is the Danny Rand from the current Power Man and Iron Fist comic, which is a wackier Danny, but in the show he is still dealing with lots of trauma. One my head cannon say that interpretation, I became okay with the choices Finn Jones was making.
I enjoyed this first episode. But, having lived in Japan for as long as I have, and being ranked in iaido (although a low beginner ranking) I can say that what little they showed as kendo is absolutely nothing like wha tI have seen of kendo. It all just looks so wrong. What is with those uniforms? Seriously, it would have been more believable is those practitioners were wearing sweatpants and assorted workout clothes, because then we could at least say they were just there for a trial class and didn’t have any gear yet. But I’ll stop here as I imagine I’ll have more groaning about this later as the show progresses. I liked the little we saw of Jessica Henwick as Colleen Wing, though.
In this episode we see Danny’s mom get sucked out of an airplane. This is going to sound crazy, but if they are going to go with a slightly shell-shocked and traumatized Danny then they should have stuck to the comics. In those old school, all-ages comics Mrs. Rand lets herself get torn apart by wolves in order to save her son. And he sees it happen. Its horrific. And somehow perfect.