“Lead Horse Back to Stable”
Written by Ian Stokes
Directed by Deborah Chow
Flashback to Danny waking up outside a waterfall with the mark on his chest and his fist glowing. Davos finds him and doesn’t seem overly thrilled for his success, but he promises to always guard K’un-Lun with him. In the present, Danny is still unable to focus his chi. Davos is still determined to hustle back to K’un-Lun. Danny says he left to find out what happened to his parents and now he feels justified staying because the Hand is in the city. He agrees to go back after they’ve defeated the Hand, though.
Colleen goes back to the dojo, which is quite trashed. Bakuto finds her and isn’t happy. He’s a lot more draconian than she likes now. He reminds her of what the Hand has done for all those kids. She wants to persuade Danny, but Bakuto wants to capture him. Danny and Davos go to Claire, who patches Danny up. He’s having rage issues because Colleen betrayed his trust. In the penthouse, Harold breaks his punching bag. Joy has been working there all night. She’s discovered the Hand’s money laundering and fraud through their company. Harold is thrilled that she’s found this stuff, but he’s creeping her out. And she still doesn’t know where Ward is.
Davos doesn’t like how much Claire knows about K’un-Lun. He tells her a bit about Shou-Lao, though. She can’t believe there’s an actual dragon distributing mystical powers somewhere. Davos is super jealous of Danny and bad at hiding it. And similarly rage-y. They both do this thing where the kinda swallow it down and pretend they’re fine. Claire orders pizza, and Colleen is the one who brings it. She tries to explain to Claire, who is more annoyed to her face than when was when talking to Danny about her. Danny tries to center his chi again. More flashbacks. Looks like guarding K’un-Lun was the most boring job ever. Kinda makes sense why he’d leave, actually. There didn’t seem to be any threats, and he had baggage from home to deal with.
Colleen finds Danny on the roof of Claire’s building. They argue about Bakuto. Neither of them backs down, but he’s a bit less pissed at her by the end and more sad and confused. Davos has revised his opinion of mortal food. Pizza’s not so bad. Claire doesn’t want Danny to go back to K’un-Lun, because all they want him to do is punch things with the Iron Fist, but he can heal and do other stuff too. (Um...I thought he only knew about punching because he didn’t finish his training, not because that was all they wanted from him.) Colleen goes to a former student who works at the hospital so she can get pain meds for Danny. The girl rats her out to the Hand because she wasn’t following orders. A whole car full of ex-students come to bring her in. She goes with them.
Danny and Davos go to the penthouse where Harold outlines the plan, which involves luring Bakuto somewhere because they’ve redirected his funds away from him. Joy thinks they’re trying to get Bakuto arrested. Danny wants to kill Bakuto. And apparently Harold has non-Hand goons. Joy super doesn’t want anyone to be murdered, and Harold is freaking her out again. She hits the green light, draining the Hand’s accounts.
Colleen is now strapped to a dolly/stretcher/chair thing in the compound. Bakuto is not taking her disobedience well. He’s decided she’s a lost cause because she has doubts. Then he gets the news of the accounts from a goon. She gets wheeled into a room to be drained of her blood to make that creepy philosopher stone stuff like in Daredevil S2. She gets free and beats up her former students.
Davos and Danny are staking out the compound, and apparently Danny still doesn’t have a driver’s license. Danny’s not so sure anymore that the meditation techniques they were taught were very helpful, because he’s got this rage boiling up in him that he can’t control anymore. Davos thinks it’s just because he flaked out on K’un-Lun. But Davos gets angry too. He desperately wanted to be the Iron Fist, and he could have accepted that it was Danny instead if Danny had just stayed. Danny says he left K’un-Lun because he felt empty the entire time he was there, and then he saw a hawk flying, showing him the way out. They see Colleen jump out of the compound, and Danny runs after her. She’s an emotional wreck. Her world has been shattered.
Okay, so did Danny ditch K’un-Lun because he wanted to find out who killed his parents, or because he felt empty? Because if this was supposed to be a long buildup to him admitting he felt empty, it wasn’t handled well, and if it was meant to be him finding out who killed his parents (and then getting caught up in the Hand fight because it’s all connected), we should’ve known much earlier than episode eight that the pilots of the Rand private jet were poisoned. That should’ve been the mystery driving the entire show, not something that feels like a retcon so far into the season. I would like to know what was so unexpected about Danny’s experience with Shou-Lao. Maybe he told Danny that his mission wasn’t just in K’un-Lun and that’s why he gave the power to an outsider this time. Colleen’s half of the episode is great, but Danny’s is kind of a mess, again.
Things I Liked
Things I Didn’t
Pretty much did the Danny analysis in the episode reaction this time. There isn’t really any part of his arc that was done in a way that makes sense. His anger issues, his drive to be involved in his father’s company, his drive to be the Iron Fist, his apparent emptiness, his desire to solve his parents’ murders...It’s all so scatterbrained.
I jumped the gun on my complaints about Colleen’s characterization last time. It still doesn’t make sense, but not by nearly as wide a margin as I thought. I guess she didn’t want Bakuto’s kids all ganging up on Danny, so she gave him an exit? And this is the episode where she gradually sees Bakuto for what he really is. But did she seriously never see any of the signs before? How could she have missed them when everyone else there is clearly willing to follow really scary orders? The show is leaving me with few explanations besides these characters being very dumb, and that’s not okay.
Good job, Joy, helping take down the Hand with accounting skills. Too bad she’s stuck with Harold as he gets increasingly scary.
Still no Ward, but we do have Claire! Yay!
The Watcher's Diary
In this blog, I'll be reviewing, analyzing, and generally fangirling over excellent television. Exhibit A: the Whedonverse.