This Iron Fist review contains spoilers.
Iron Fist Season 2 Episode 5
Look, I’m extremely surprised to admit this, but Iron Fist season 2 is quite comfortably my favorite Netflix MCU season that isn’t either of the Daredevils. Sure, it isn’t perfect, but it is enormous fun and completely plunging head first into the mystical underpinnings of the character. Jessica Jones might boast writing that’s thematically complete and has important things to say about trauma, but I just can’t get excited about watching her pull another lock off a door while looking bored.
So now Davos is the Iron Fist, and as is customary we get a Netflix Flashback (TM) showing how it was that he became such a prick. It turns out, his mother didn’t love him. Or did, but she struggled to actually say it after he embarrassed her by losing to Danny Rand, which as a parent I can sort of understand. But I enjoyed the look at K’un-Lun and life therein, and I like that Davos throws himself into being the Iron Fist with a real sense of righteous purpose.
In practice, that means he uses the Iron Fist to punch people’s spines across the room. Okay, it’s not exactly subtle, but if you were a zealot driven mad by your own rage you’d probably think it made sense too. What’s making Davos a good villain is that he is abiding by his own code, and you can sort of see his point: won’t more people live if these evil-doers die? I do feel like he’s conveniently forgetting that Danny did what the Iron Fist should do by ridding New York of the Hand (broadly) but Davos is going a step beyond that instead of just moving furniture. So fair enough.
Misty’s addition to the cast (at least for now) is also playing really well, if only because she has a vaguely normal person’s perspective on this kung fu madness. I love these smaller crossovers a lot more than waiting for a big team-up because it gives the world some texture and verisimilitude. There is a little of the Avengers-style “at what point does it become smart to call your super-powered pals in?” around this show, but like Avengers you almost don’t think about it because they’re focusing the story on these people.
Still. Now that Danny doesn’t have the Iron Fist and has been completely messed up, I expect we’re going to see a lot more of everyone else taking over the fun stuff. So much for Colleen hanging up her Katana…
When Misty gets asked if Claire is available to do some treatment, she just shakes her head. Claire is currently visiting her mother abroad after deciding that she didn’t want to stick around for Luke Cage’s descent into revenge-fuelled madness. Although they did tag on a scene at the end of Luke Cage where she came to visit, off screen, and he waved her away without talking to her. So maybe she’s just retired.
Misty also mentions that she’s considering accepting a promotion to Captain, which she was offered following the death of Ridenhour in Luke Cage season two. In the comics, she and Colleen, of course, become the Daughters of the Dragon and run an independent private investigator agency so maybe she won’t take that promotion. This episode is basically a back-door pilot, after all.
And for the last Misty reference, hand in your nerd badge and gun if you missed the fact that the Netflix MCU’s police code for “possible subject with abilities” is 616, which is (or was) the designated number of the Marvel Comics universe in the multiverse.
The title of the episode comes from Marvel Premiere #16 (1974) which was the second ever Iron Fist comic and the one that introduced Lei-Kung and Shou-Lao the Undying. You know, the literal dragon.