This article was a collaborative work between Britney Monae and John Robinson.
When Iron Fist premiered this weekend it introduced the final Defender: Danny Rand. Danny returned home after 15 years to a world that was completely changed. His parents were dead, his childhood friends were running the company that was his birthright, and the enemy he swore to defeat — The Hand — was in New York. Over the course of Season 1, Danny met Colleen Wing, he uncovered some of The Hand’s plans in New York, and he defeated the man who killed his parents, Harold Meachum. So many things were hinted at during season one that we would like to see resolved or explored more including new villains, deeper plot developments, and new characters like Wu Ao-Shi, Bei Beng-Wen, and Orson Randall.
What’s the first thought that comes to mind when we think about what we want in Season 2? Powerful villains! This isn’t power in the sense that these people are disassembling universes with their minds. What we want are villains that have a powerful presence. We want to see Danny face a villain like Wilson Fisk, Mariah Dillard, Kilgrave — villains who are complex, who have us nodding our heads when they make their points, even though they are maleficent little bastards.
Davos as the Steel Serpent
Season one did a fantastic job in establishing that Danny and Davos grew up together in K’un L’un and formed a brother-like bond. Season one also put their relationship to the test, especially since Davos thought Danny was undeserving of being the Iron Fist. In season two, we’d like to see that tension go even further and Davos become the Steel Serpent, just like he is in the comics. This would create a formidable antagonist for Danny/Iron Fist. If Davos became the mantle holder of the Steel Serpent, then the Iron Fist would not be the only immortal weapon that existed.
The second villain we’d like to see rise more prominently in season two is Zhou Cheng. Played Lewis Tan, Cheng had an incredible fight scene with Danny in China. In the comics, Zhou Cheng is the eater of the Iron Fist; he is the only person who can successfully kill an Iron Fist. This was hinted at during their fight scene outside Gao’s drug factory. The history of Zhou Cheng and the Iron Fist are deeply interwoven. That rivalry would make for a powerful narrative in season two. With exploring Zhou’s history it would also have to explore the history of previous Iron Fists just like in the Immortal Iron Fist comic book run. This would create the much-needed focus on Asian heroes who are immersed in the culture that surrounds Iron Fist.
The first half of season two should follow Danny and Davos’ struggles together. Their fights could be on even footing, with Danny even losing to Davos a few times. The second half of the season should feature Zhou Cheng brutally beating Danny, with Danny surviving only due to some interference, perhaps by Orson Randall? (more on him in a few).
This would prompt Danny to look for a means to combat Cheng. He could turn to the Book of Iron Fists (as established in the comics), which could give us glimpses of previous Iron Fists and their legacies. If this is done correctly, we could get some amazing historical stories and Asian features. It’s even possible that we could see the characters as astral spirits of past Iron Fists, teaching Danny different ways of using his chi to perform advanced feats. Eventually, Davos and Danny could come to a final confrontation. We would like to see them reconcile and make amends before the final 13th episode, where together, they could face the might of Zhou Cheng — the eater of Iron Fists.
In addition this idea, we’d like to see more flashbacks of how Danny became the Iron Fist. Let’s see young Danny training with other boys of K’un L’un all wanting to be the Iron Fist. Let’s see more scene with Lei Kung and Danny. Let’s see Lei Kung becoming Danny’s surrogate father in K’un L’un. It would be lovely to see that bond form and Danny then feeling guilt for leaving his post in the current day.
Everyone wants to actually see Danny fight against Shou-Lao; so it would be wonderful to actually see that scene play out. It would also be cool if we get to see Yu-Ti and Lord Tu-An; two other very important residents of K’un L’un who have a great deal to do with Danny’s upbringing in K’un L’un, that were mentioned in season one of Iron Fist.
Continue the theme of Danny’s chi needing fixing. Or make it appear that’s what’s going on, when it’s something else entirely. It’s always compelling in the comics when Danny is at a crossroads and can’t harness his chi, because it makes him vulnerable in fights. Maybe this would fit much better in a second half season two, especially if Zhou Cheng returned.
For Colleen, it would be nice to see her trying to rediscover who she is. What is her life without the Hand? How will she move on from that? Will she try to rescue Darryl and others from the Hand? Is she waiting for Bakuto to come back? These are all questions for Colleen that should be answered in a season two. Not to mention it would be nice for us to get a cameo with her interacting with Misty Knight, should this season happen after Defenders.
Joy and Ward Meachum returning is a must. In most of season one of Iron Fist, Joy cares deeply about Danny and even tries to convince her own brother to take Danny’s side. However, based on the last events of season one, especially her last scene, I would love to see Joy become an antagonist to not only Danny, but Ward as well.
We think that Ward’s journey would in a way mirror Joy’s, and eventually cause Ward to slowly cross to Danny’s side, maybe even mending their broken friendship. This would in turn, create a rift between Joy and Ward. Also, in season one, Ward was dealing with some pretty heavy emotions, so it would be nice to see him work through those as well.
The need for Zhou Cheng to defeat and take Danny’s life force should be an extremely powerful driving force behind his character, since it would have likely been over 100 years since he last killed an Iron Fist (due to of one of them having survived due to trickery). Zhou needs the life force of the Iron Fist to stay strong, young, and attractive. Zhou having a scar on his face in season one could possibly be his body needing to feed upon an Iron Fist. With the lack of chi, Zhou might have turned to alcohol, which would explain why Danny had an easier time defeating Zhou (because we all know how that should have gone). Now that Zhou is aware an Iron Fist is in his reach, he has a new inspiration to continue the cycle that previously sustained his long life.
Introduce Orson Randall. Orson was the Iron Fist before Danny, and it’s assumed that Orson is dead. The reason being is because Danny has been taught that all previous Iron Fists have died. And the only way for the mantle of Iron Fist to be passed down is for the previous mantle holder to die. However, in the comics, Danny ends up discovering that Orson is still alive and that’s why his chi has been difficult to harness. In the Immortal Iron Fist, Orson reveals that he’s been using drugs to weaken his chi to a point where it tricks the whole system into thinking that he is dead. Remember how Danny in season one of Iron Fist couldn’t harness his chi while he was under drugs in the mental hospital? That’s exactly what Orson was doing, but he was purposely doing it to himself. This is how Shou-Lao was reborn, and that is how Danny was able to become the next Iron Fist despite Orson still being alive.
Orson and Danny end up working together for sometime, and Orson teaches Danny a thing or two about being the Iron Fist. In the comics, Orson was an adoptive father of Wendell Rand (Danny’s father), but with what was established on season one of Iron Fist, we aren’t so sure if this is a storyline that could work. Either way, introducing Orson Randall would be pretty awesome!
In addition, we need to see robust scenes featuring some of the greatest past Iron Fists, namely, Wu Ao-Shi and Bei Beng-Wen, among others. These characters wouldn’t have to be in every episode, but could be spiritual guides to help guide Danny on his quest to master control of his chi.
Another group we want to see are the Immortal Weapons — there are six in addition to Danny. We’ve already seen The Bride of Nine Spiders — she fought Danny in Gao’s trial in Season 1, Episode 6. We only saw a glimpse of her and we’d like to see more. Our vote is to also see Li Hua, Tiger’s Beautiful Daughter, Fat Cobra, and the Prince of Orphans, all of whom are featured in The Immortal Iron Fist comic book.
Season one did have some shining moments, and set up a lot of good ground work for a season two of Iron Fist. However there was issues with the writing and pacing. We as fans of the source material and the Netflix MCU shows, only want to see the shows be as epic as possible. We think Finn Jones and company could deliver a great season two, if the writing is more focused and concise. We’re very much looking forward to what Marco Ramirez and his writing staff will do with Danny Rand and all of the other characters in The Defenders.