"Hi. I’m Danny Rand. I’ve been away a long time," begins the trailer for Netflix’s newest Marvel series Iron Fist. Barefoot and clad in a tattered sweatshirt, Iron Fist (played by Finn Jones) walks into his parents’ company headquarters, 15 years after disappearing in a plane crash that killed his mom and dad, and left him presumed dead.
The trailer emphasises that the new series will be the debut of the ‘final defender’ (another upcoming series The Defenders will feature protagonists from Jessica Jones, Daredevil, Luke Cage and Iron Fist).
For those who want the back story, Iron Fist is Danny Rand, who returns from the fictional Asian country of K’un L’un, where he was schooled in the martial arts after the death of his wealthy parents. Simply put: Iron Fist is like Kung-fu Batman.
In many ways, the backstory does mimic Batman's — dead wealthy parents, the hero has his own corporation (Wayne Enterprises there, and Rand Corporation here) and a secret superhero identity to match.
Iron Fist is one of the most popular comic book characters in Marvel history, but it was the casting choice that created a bit of stir with the fans.
Fans had pushed for Marvel to re-envision the story with an Asian-American hero at its center, a demand that grew more urgent after Doctor Strange — whose hero is also a white man soaked in Asian mysticism — cast Tilda Swinton in the role of the Ancient One, instead of an Asian man depicted in the comics. USA Today referred to Iron Fist as 'kick[ing] Asian representation while it’s down.'
Whitewashing apart, Iron Fist has a lot of expectations to live upto after Luke Cage. The trailer sets up a conflict between Danny and David Wenham’s Harold Meachum — shown at one point with a face covered in blood spatter — for control of Danny’s father’s company, but it also highlights the roles played by Jessica Henwick, a British actress of Chinese and South African descent, and Wai Ching Ho’s Madame Gao, a returning villain from Netflix’s Daredevil series, and it features a shot of Jones and Henwick navigating the streets of Chinatown in the middle of the Lunar New Year celebration.
Whether show creator Scott Buck is seriously wrestling with the politics of representation or just using an interesting combination of scenes in the trailer, we'll know soon.
Here's the trailer:
Published Date: Feb 08, 2017 12:00 pm | Updated Date: Feb 08, 2017 12:00 pm