Marvel and Netflix’s relationship with critics regarding their team-up shows has been pretty good to date. The streaming giant notably hands out only the first few episodes of a series to press who judge the shows on that basis.
There’s no question the first season of “Daredevil” and “Jessica Jones” remain very well liked amongst critics. The second season of the former though was less well regarded, while “Luke Cage” scored good notices – at least until the full season premiered and the back half saw a big change in the tone of further reviews.
Now with the launch of the fourth series, “Iron Fist,” the companies are being taken to task in the overwhelmingly negative reviews for the show so far. The series follows billionaire Danny Rand (Finn Jones) returns to New York City after being missing for years and tries to reconnect with his past and take on crime.
Numerous reviews are thoroughly slamming the show, with some being used to retroactively point out the issues with the previous series. Certainly the gild has come off the lily in this case. Here’s a few excerpts:
” [Iron Fist] feels like a step backward on every level, a major disappointment that already suffers from storytelling issues through the first six episodes made available to critics and would probably be mercifully skippable in its entirety if it weren’t the bridge into the long awaited Defenders crossover series… Through six episodes, in addition to failing to introduce a main character I care about at all, Iron Fist hasn’t given me any season-long arc/objective that I could describe for you, much less one I’m curious to see resolved — and that’s before it hits that wall between episodes seven and 12 that none of the Marvel shows has been immune to.”: THR
“Not one element of this plodding piece works. The action scenes lack spark, snap, and originality. None of the flat, by-the-numbers characters makes any lasting impression. And as origin stories go, the tale of Danny Rand (Finn Jones), at least as rendered by this creative team, is about as exciting as a slice of Velveeta cheese left out in the sun too long. It takes forever for anything to happen on “Iron Fist,” and as it stumbles along, the uninspired production design, unexceptional cinematography, and painful dialogue fail to distract the viewer from the overall lack of depth, detail, or momentum.”: Variety
“The sad truth, however, is that Iron Fist is the weakest of Marvel’s Netflix series to date. As far as diversity, representation, and appropriation go, the series fails in a number of ways. But, over the course of its first six episodes, it also manages to fall short on basic levels like storytelling. Its creative laziness bankrupts the entire show. Marvel’s new series is a disappointing case study in studios needing to try harder to tell difficult stories well.”: The Verge
“While this high-rise approach does set Iron Fist apart from the other, grittier and more urban Marvel-Netflix series, it also lends the show a sterile look and feel. Again, it’s all very prime time soap opera-ish. The latter of these first six episodes eventually brings in more comic book-y and fun elements, but Iron Fist is thus far the weakest of the Marvel-Netflix series.”: IGN
“The fact that both Danny (Finn Jones) and Colleen (Jessica Henwick) aren’t good at talking should be no sin for the genre. The problem is that Iron Fist is virtually all talk — most of it painfully dull — and the fighting is both brief and unconvincing. It’s easily the worst of the Netflix Marvel shows — where the others tend to start off well and then run into massive pacing problems around episode 8 or 9, Iron Fist begins as if it’s already at that sag point — and an unfortunate illustration of the perils of miscasting.”: Uproxx
“I fully expected Iron Fist to be a decent adaptation ultimately hobbled by an unwillingness to stray too far from its dated source material… And let me be clear: Iron Fist’s problems with its portrayal of Asian cultures and Asian-Americans are embedded throughout every episode. It’s just that its problems with delivering exposition, crafting consistent characters, and even basic dialogue writing run right alongside.”: Polygon
Also today check out a new featurette about Jessica Henwick as Colleen Wing in the series. “Marvel’s Iron Fist” premieres with 13 episodes on March 17th.