Sunday, April 23, 2017

Iron Fist: "The Blessings Of Many Fractures"

Yeah, they wish many fractures had blessings, because that episode was fractured as fuck. It was jacked up. It was the single biggest dumpster fire of the show to date, which is saying something.

First and foremost, this is one of those "hero has an awful idea born out of desperation and stupidity, everyone goes along with it, and somehow it works out" episodes that The Flash and Legends of Tomorrow have been so fond of. So right off the bat, I'm gonna fucking hate it. Danny flies to China because he heard that's where Gao was going and wants to kidnap her. Colleen goes along because she's infatuated with Danny, the superhero with the powers of gullitibility, dumbness, mediocre fighting, and an occasionally glowing hand. Claire goes along because the script requires it and her actual justification is irrelevant.

What follows are a series of conversations so inexplicable that not even Rosario Dawson can make her parts of them work, though she makes a valiant, if Pyrrhic, effort. There's a conversation between Colleen and a hobo that makes you wonder how it made its way through every stage, from writing, to filming, to editing, without someone saying something.

At one point, on the "plane" to "China", Our Hero assures everyone he's in complete control of his mind, body, and emotions while in the early stages of a panic attack. And I get what they're going for there, but it doesn't make Danny seem like he's conflicted about his training and identity, it just makes him seem like a dipshit.

And then the show, not having learned the lesson of don't remind people of good things during your shitty things, introduces a Drunken Master, Joe Chang. And conceptually, in isolation, this scene works. Chang taunts Danny about abandoning his vows and Kun'Lun, and draws comparisons, and eventually gets his ass kicked because plywood falls on his head. The execution, though... the fight is clumsily shot, the acting is sub-par, and the logistics of how this drunken door guard got briefed by Madame Gao on the weaknesses of the Iron Fist are troubling. Is there a Hand-wide e-mail newsletter?

And ultimately, Danny conquers his introduced-half-an-hour-ago-uncontrollable-rage and captures Madame Gao, fulfilling the purpose of their hastily thought out, unplanned, and steaming shit fire of a mission.

Oh, and also Ward and Joy and Ward's Hallucinations and The Old White Dudes At Rand are all jockeying for mutual manipulation and lying and it's the best part of the episode and also still not very good.

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