Writer: Ed Brisson
Artist: Mike Perkins
Colorists: Andy Troy
Letterers: VC’s Travis Lanham
Cover Artist: Jeff Dekal
Variant Cover Artists: Mike Perkins & Andy Troy; Alex Ross; Kaare Andrews
Release Date: 03/22/17
Rating: Rated T+
As a young boy Danny Rand travelled to his father’s adopted mystical home of K’un-L’un where he lost both of his parents. After years of training Danny found something; a purpose. Danny earned the right to take on the dragon Shou-Lao and defeated him, earning him the title of Iron Fist. As Iron Fist, Danny joins a long line of defenders of K’un-L’un. When K’un-L’un reappears Danny seeks out vengeance for his parents, but instead finds a deeper purpose. He realizes he isn’t just Danny Rand, or the Iron Fist, he is Danny Rand, The Iron Fist and becomes a superhero defending both of his worlds.
Recently while away from K’un-L’un living his life as Danny Rand and the superhero Iron Fist, K’un-L’un is attacked, and destroyed. Without out K’un-L’un his connection to the city is severed and Danny lost his Chi-fueled powers. Now he must set out on a quest to find out who he is.
Plot: Danny Rand is lost without his powers he questions his very identity. In search for answers he travels the world fighting in illegal fights anything to reignite what he has loss. A stranger approaches him at a bar named Choshin from the island of Liu-Shi and presents Danny with his first real challenge. Choshin offers Danny what he seeks and tells him it is on Liu-Shi.
Story: This story finds Danny at a very low point. I am a big fan of Iron Fist, and I actually enjoyed the Netflix show. What I usually enjoy from the character outside of the martial arts, is usually his positive jovial attitude. Danny isn’t that dark character. Now this seems odd given that I like the Netflix show, but that show like this comic opens the character up to something else I enjoy, a psychological story.
Danny is broken. He has lost his chi-powers. The Iron Fist can no longer be summoned. Danny is on this journey, and he is doing it alone. I am immediately drawn into this story from the first page. Brisson has me wondering what has gotten Danny to this point? What is this journey? How can he regain the Iron Fist? I want to go in this journey with Danny right from the first page.
Brisson really captures the dark place Danny is in, and through his internal monologue shows us how this is contrast to the Danny Rand before this journey. I can see that he is on this journey not just to find his adopted home, or reignite his power, but to also regain that part of himself that he lost by losing them.
This isn’t the first time Danny has gone dark, his last series (Iron Fist: The Living Weapon) took him down a dark road, one that was so dark it caused me to do something I had not done in over a decade; drop a Marvel book. I know this doesn’t seem drastic to most, but I have collected every DC and Marvel book for most of my life and to drop a book was serious. Now that is not saying that a completist such as myself didn’t buy the run after it was canceled, but the impact was still there. The difference between this and that series, is I feel that connection to the Danny Rand I love, he is at a low point and I am rooting for him to fight his way back.
Art: Mike Perkins and Andy Troy put us right into the story with the art. I feel drawn into this world and a part of Danny’s journey. The way the bring the seedy underworld of illegal fights to life, is almost cinematic. I can see the Danny I once knew beneath the wear and tear from these endless fight. The paneling here is amazing. The fights look so fluid and choreographed through the panels as they dance from one strike to the next. Every blow can be felt and the impact of every challenge can be seen to affect Danny as well.
Verdict: Overall this issue was a very solid read. I really loved how the team can take Danny on this dark journey without losing his essence something that I think the previous series didn’t capture. I would recommend this to anyone who is a fan of Iron Fist whether you’re a long time fan of him like myself, or just getting into him due to the Nextflix series.
Rating: 4 stars.