Iron Fist is back for a second season on Netflix with a point to prove following the critical panning of the first season. Thankfully this series features a new show runner, (Sleepy Hollow‘s Raven Metzner), a new fight coordinator (Black Panther‘s Clayton Barber) as well as a more developed Danny Rand following his cameo in Luke Cage season 2. This season is also more streamlined with a 10 episode run and a far more focused storyline. Thanks to Netflix I was able to watch the first six episodes of the series, and I’m so glad to say it is is a vast improvement on the first, much like Luke Cage season 2, the show benefits from stronger villains, more flashbacks and an amazing team up!
We all know the problems with the first season of Iron Fist; disappointing fight sequences, a genuine lack of the martial arts and mythology of the character, as well as a slow storyline that favoured boardroom politics over the age old battle between K’un L’un and the Hand. If I’m being honest, me and Chris didn’t actually mind the first season (other than the super seriousness of Rand) but knew it definitely didn’t reach the heights of Daredevil and Jessica Jones. Also being a fan of the comics, I knew the character didn’t quite live up to expectations, especially when it comes to the title Power Man and Iron Fist. But after watching the bromance and comedy grow between Danny Rand and Luke Cage in The Defenders and Luke Cage season 2, I was quietly confident that Finn Jones was really growing into the role.
Iron Fist season 2 sees Danny Rand (Finn Jones) picking up Matt Murdock’s mantle as protector of NYC following his sacrifice at the end of The Defenders. Rand spends his nights as a vigilante hero, trying to protect the city from the growing gang war in Chinatown as they battle over territories that were once controlled by The Hand. But despite all of his efforts, Danny doesn’t feel as if he’s making a difference and begins to doubt his true destiny as the Iron Fist. Meanwhile Colleen Wing (Jessica Henwick) has given up teaching and volunteers at a local community centre, but grows concerned over Danny and his obsession with the rival gangs, the Golden Tigers and the Hatchets. Lurking in the shadows are Davos (Sacha Dhawan) and Joy Meachum (Jessica Stroup), who have a score to settle with Danny, setting in motion a plan that will unravel everything that the Iron Fist cares for.
As well as expanding and evolving Danny Rand’s character, the additional cast have much more to work with this season as they all get their time to shine, particularly Jessica Henwick’s Coleen Wing. She’s stepped up to co-lead this season, teaming up with the kick ass Misty Knight (Simone Missick) for some absolutely fantastic and inventive fight scenes, teasing the much hoped for Daughters of the Dragon spinoff! Sacha Dhawan is cold and clinical as Danny’s ‘brother’ Davos, bringing an intensity and mythology to the show as he returns to claim his birth right. Joining Davos on villain duties is the incredible newcomer Alice Eve who plays the mysterious and genuinely terrifying Typhoid Mary. Without giving away any spoilers, the character is an unpredictable and dangerous entity and definitely one to watch! Even the Meachum siblings get a more interesting arc this time round; Tom Pelphrey’s Ward was one of my favourites from the first series, so it’s great to explore his character more.
This season features a lot of impressive action sequences and well choreographed fight scenes, particularly featuring Davos and Danny in K’un L’un, which will definitely please the fans. There’s a real Daredevil vibe throughout as the action is grittier and much more grounded as our heroes battle against the triad gangs in warehouses, restaurants and the streets. We also explore more of the mythos of the show through a number of intriguing flashbacks, personally I would really love the show to explore that in more detail. There are still a couple of pacing issues though, as one episode seemed to revolve around a very odd dinner date!
Overall Iron Fist season two is a huge step in the right direction; we get a much more interesting and grounded storyline, improved fight sequences and a greater focus on the cast as a whole. I was completely gripped watching Davos and Joy’s plans start to kick into gear in the fifth and sixth episode and can’t wait to binge the rest of the season. Anyone else want Netflix to announce a Heroes for Hire and Daughters of the Dragon series?