In the premiere episode, Marvel’s Iron Fist left off on a bit of a cliff hanger where we saw Danny Rand (Finn Jones) had been drugged and involuntarily committed to a mental hospital. The majority of the second episode takes place in the mental facility in what turned out to be a rather disjointed episode. What stands out the most from this episode is that the show still hasn’t quite figured out its purpose or its heart within the story and the characters. Although there were a couple of moments that stood out in the episode, the overall episode was relatively lackluster.
During this episode we focus on Danny Rand who’s been confined to a mental hospital. Although he still claims that he is Danny Rand, it is repeatedly pointed out to him that he has no proof. The hospital staff, particularily Rand’s psychiatrist Dr. Paul Edmonds, refers to Rand as Joey Anderson. Why? That’s the name on his Canadian passport.
The purpose of including Dr. Edmonds in this episode, unfortunately, is to provide more background on Danny Rand through a trial and error round of questioning. At one point it seems like, perhaps, Danny may not be who he says he is until Dr. Edmonds shows Danny an old Rand Enterprises commercial. Danny, of course, remembers the day of that commercial vividly because he was bribed with a visit to the circus after they were done filming. Curious, Dr. Edmonds calls up Joy Meachum to confirm the story and she does. Towards the end of the episode, Dr. Edmonds is convinced that Danny is who he says he is.
However, Dr. Edmonds is not convinced that Danny is sane. Danny’s claims that he is the Iron Fist and was trained by monks in an alternative dimension. From a non superhero perspective and from the perspective of someone who’s apparently seen an uptick in people claiming to be superpowered beings since “The Incident”, Dr. Edmonds’ concern regarding Danny’s sanity makes sense. Even more so since Danny has undergone severe trauma. As a result, Dr. Edmonds decides to keep Danny at the hospital and begin treatment for an anxiety disorder. Mind you, the man isn’t 100% that it’s an anxiety disorder, but that is an entirely different cluster of a subject.
Meanwhile,Ward Meachum’s not-so-dead father Harold has determined that Danny is who he says he is by using the mental hospital’s camera system to spy on the poor would-be superhero. He’s even more convinced when he gets ballsy and goes to visit Danny in the hospital, knowing that Danny would be in a weakened state. Here is where we hear our first mention of Iron Fist and his connection to the Hand (please consult Daredevil for reference).
Convinced that Danny is who he says he is, Harold orders Ward to take Danny and move him to a secure location due to his connection to the Hand. Given how influential the Hand was in Season 2 of Daredevil, it would be safe to assume interesting plot points are going to be surrounding them later on in this series. Ward, being the dick that he is, sends men to go beat the crap out of a strapped up Danny instead.
This leads to the arguably, frustrating moment at the end of the episode.
Given the caliber of previous Marvel TV shows, it is frustrating to me that we’ve had to wait until the end of episode 2 to see a AH-HA! superhero worthy moment. The moment I’m referring to is when Danny’s Iron Fist is triggered while having the crap beaten out of him by Ward’s men. He beats them up and proceeds to escape. With his Iron Fist fully activated, he punches his way to freedom from the psych ward and runs away. This is how the episode ends.
As of now, the show still hasn’t quite found its footing and the series feels hollow without knowing which direction it’s going. The characters still feel somewhat lost or one-note. The only really interesting characters so far are Colleen Wing followed by Harold Meachum due to the fact that he is a mysteriously reborn being. Me thinks the Hand or something may be involved with that. We’ll see. I am sincerely hoping that the next episode will do something to convince me that Danny is a threat. As of now, I’m not convinced he can save anyone, especially from the Hand.