Marvel’s new superhero series Iron Fist recently made its debut on Netflix, and people are not too happy with it. In fact, it has been receiving a slew of negative reviews since its release, currently having a critic’s rating of 18 percent on Rotten Tomatoes.
The number one complaint about the series is how overwhelmingly white it is. For those of you who aren’t familiar with the Iron First storyline, it follows Danny Rand, a expert martial artist who has the ability to call upon a mystical force known as the Iron Fist. He was given this power as a result of defeating the dragon, Shou-Lao, during his time in the mystical city of K’un-L’un training with master Lei Kung.
Based on the story’s description, you imagine the character to be an Asian-American. But he’s not. Yup, he’s a white guy. The character has always been white, but many people had high hopes that the Netflix series would change it up; giving it more cultural accuracy. Changing the character’s ethnicity would have also given Marvel a chance to diversify their cast and give spotlight to an Asian actor. Unfortunately, Marvel did not take advantage of improving the Iron Fist plot and instead, gave us the typical white savior narrative we always get, which in this case, blatantly appropriates an Asian culture.
Another complaint is the action. After watching all the episodes myself, I can certainly vouch for that. Everything about it is lazy and boring. One scene in particular really caught my eye. The same fight scene actually caught the eye of a fellow viewer, which led them to post about it on Reddit. They pointed out the scene, which was only 35 seconds long, featured 56 cuts. 56. All those cuts made the scene look messy and weak. Seriously, take a look for yourself.
Still don’t see the problem? Let’s compare it to another scene. The Independent compared it to a fight scene from another Marvel series Daredevil. In the scene, there is barely any jump cuts. You see everything that is going on, which increases the intensity of it all. Unlike Iron Fist, it was convincing.
The last major complaint about the series is its writing. Not only is the fight choreography boring, but so is the dialogue. Something that I cannot stand about any television show or film is when things are told to me, not shown to me. Iron Fist has a huge problem with that. Then, when the show decides to give you a visual depiction of something, they kill it by having a character state the obvious right after you just what happened. Like come on. Let the images speak for themselves.