Iron Fist - Season 2 - Review
Iron Fist is definitely the weakest of the Marvel shows, but Jessica Henwick's Colleen Wing is such a great character that it was worth checking in on the second season. Plus, the completionist in me needed to see this chapter. Iron Fist season 2 was actually a pleasant surprise.
There will be a few spoilers throughout, so continue reading only if you have watched the season.
From the get-go, it was instantly apparent that they heard the feedback of season 1 and tried to fix it. The fight scenes were leaps and bounds over the ones from the first season, and the story was a bit more streamlined.
Since Iron Fist debuted, we've seen Danny and Colleen in other things, like The Defenders and Luke Cage season 2. Their journeys in those shows have brought Iron Fist to a better place to start a new chapter.
The second season was more relatable, and more personal. Danny Rand shows more humanity. He isn't as alien. Finn Jones's acting wasn't as stiff either. Everything was an improvement, but it was still lacking a bit.
Once Simone Missick's Misty Knight showed up, things began to improve again. The problem is that Misty and Colleen were far and away the best part of the show, and so any time spent away from them was time wasted.
The biggest problem plaguing season 2 though, is that it follows the same formula that every other Netflix Marvel show has to a fault. I don't know if that is a Marvel mandate, or a Netflix mandate. Regardless, it has become stale, and a show like Iron Fist that already had an uphill battle, can't really overcome that.
By far the biggest improvement though, was that of Ward Meachum. Tom Pelphrey's character in season 1 was so bad, that I would rather watch someone slap my grandmother, than witness that again. In season 2, he doesn't only get a redemption arc in universe, but a fresh start to be the character he should have always been with audiences too. It was a pleasure to watch Ward struggles this time.
Davos (Sacha Dhawan) was fine as the villain, even though he had a few "mustache-twirling" moments. The seeds were planted early, and his rise as the Steel Serpent seemed like a natural next step. That alone wouldn't have been good enough. But they added Typhoid Mary, played by Alice Eve. Eve does some of the show's best acting; playing a woman with Disassociative Identity Disorder. Eve really got to show off her range, and I love that it left the door open for her to return. Whether it be Daredevil season 3, or Iron Fist season 3, or both....I think it is a safe bet to say that we will see her again.
No sign of Rosario Dawson's Claire this time, who was a huge part of the first season. Misty Knight sort of filled the Claire role this time around. Misty teased teaming up with Colleen, and if that happens in their own show, then the headaches of Iron Fist were worth it.
The most intriguing part of the entire season was something that was always meant to happen. Colleen now has the power of the Iron Fist. After season 1 aired, I thought that would be the easiest way to solve most of their problems - write out Danny, and let Colleen be the focus. But season 2 managed to do that and give Danny an interesting journey of his own, which actually made me want to see the next step in both of their journeys.
The history of Iron Fist is deep in the comics. It seems like a difficult task to tap into that and present it for mainstream audiences. That is why they struggled with the character. The second season was far from perfect, but they are definitely on the right track to get it to something worth holding its own against the likes of Daredevil and Jessica Jones.
Colleen being the new Iron Fist excites me. The doors left open by Mary and Davos do too. Ward's journey with Danny to untap the power of Orson Randall can lend itself to a fun third season. Things are looking up for a franchise that I had no hope for before Friday.
Overall, while they have much more work to do, this was a vast improvement from its predecessor. It made me excited for the future of the franchise, and that is about all I could ask for.
Iron Fist is now streaming, exclusively on Netflix.