“Dragon Plays with Fire”
Written by Scott Buck, Tamara Becher-Wilkinson, and Pat Charles
Directed by Stephen Surjik
Harold has pinned all the Hand’s drug stuff on Danny, making him a fugitive. He strides into Rand. Ward assures Hogarth that Danny is innocent of the charges. Ward isn’t sure this re-entering public life thing is going to work, and he’s not cool with screwing over Danny. Harold is! Also Harold probably had something to do with the Rands’ deaths. Danny and Colleen are trying to work out a plan. They send Claire to Hogarth. She brings Hogarth to Danny and Colleen. The DEA’s evidence is doctored versions of the Hand’s legers from Harold’s iPad. Hogarth advises Danny to prove his innocence with the original documents. For that, he needs Gao. The Hand academy is abandoned, but Gao is still there. She has no helpful documents, so Colleen wants to kill her. Gao is sure Danny left K’un-Lun to find out who killed his parents, and it wasn’t her. It was Harold, because Danny’s father was close to discovering all his dirty dealings with the Hand. Danny is raging out again. They know they can prove Harold’s guilt with the tablet Danny stole from Gao’s assistant before, they just have to find it. Colleen doesn’t want Danny to kill Harold because if he’s killing him out of revenge and not necessity, she thinks it’ll corrupt his chi. So she’ll kill him instead! Claire thinks this is a terrible idea, because they can get him arrested instead. They need Ward to get that tablet. Ward tries and fails to convince Joy that Harold is dangerous. Then he shows her the front page with Danny’s face on it.
Ward meets with Danny so they can go over the plan to get the iPad. Danny tells Ward that Harold killed his parents, which makes Ward and Danny the friendliest they’ve ever been. Danny is not controlling his rage well. Joy learns that Harold has been watching her all this time she thought he was dead, and she confronts him about framing Danny. She doesn’t buy his lies, and she walks out on him. He’s pissed now. And she’s still mad at Ward too, so she’s very alone. Danny, Colleen, and Claire are about ready to enact their plan. Ward tries to get them to change to another night, because there are armed guards upstairs. Harold whops him over the head with a putter. Probably nonfatal because a character that important would get more screentime for his death, but definitely nasty. Danny rushes in. Claire gets a peanut cart guy to sell her his cart with a stack of bills from Hogarth, and she blows it up. To draw the guards off the doors. Danny and Colleen make it in. Ward is back on his feet but covered in blood. Ouch. The guards have guns on all the entrances...but they didn’t figure on Danny swinging in through the window like Tarzan. Lots of shooting ensues. Colleen tries to kill Harold but he sees and is about to shoot her, so Danny does a ground pound with the Iron Fist, basically destroying the entire floor. Ward gets them the tablet.
Danny follows Harold to the roof and gets his hand shot. Harold tells him about how he wanted to shove Danny’s dad off the roof one time, before Danny was born. Harold blames Danny for his own family’s problems, and he wants revenge. Great, so they’re both bent on vengeance. Danny can’t make the Iron Fist with his hand shot, so the fight is more even. Danny accidentally impales Harold on a post, but he’s zombie Harold, so that’s not fatal enough. Flashback to Danny in Shou-Lao’s cave, but we don’t get to see him. Danny decides it’s prison time for Harold. He’s overcome his anger. Harold un-impales himself and grabs his gun to shoot Danny. Colleen shouts a warning and Danny powers up, healing his hand and deflecting the bullet at the same time. Then Ward shoots him and he falls off the building.
Ward has Harold cremated. Joy still won’t talk to him. Hogarth informs Danny that the DEA is dropping the charges. He’s in the clear. Ward would be happy to have Danny come to Rand and be his partner, but Danny’s pretty sure he wouldn’t be much use there. YOU THINK?! Danny brings pizza to Claire and Colleen at the dojo. Danny has decided he has to go to K’un-Lun to finish his training and explain himself. Claire thinks he and Colleen need psychological help for their tendency to solve problems with violence, then heads out. Colleen thinks this is goodbye, but she doesn’t understand: Danny wants her to come too. Hee! Danny’s and Ward’s portraits have replaced Wendell’s and Howard’s at Rand (so I guess Danny did take Ward up on that offer). Joy is having lunch with Davos. He offers to take Danny out so she can go back to her old life, and Gao is listening with amusement from the next table. Man, come on, Joy! When Danny and Colleen get to the K’un-Lun pass, but there are a bunch of dead Hand guys lying there, and K’un-Lun is gone.
I am not excited that Davos and Joy are being set up as the next kung-fu and corporate villains, respectively. I have never liked Davos, so it’ll be an uphill battle for them to make him interesting enough that he’s worth his screentime, and Joy? I mean, it’s not as bad as Morgana’s villain arc in Merlin, but it’s not good either. And what the heck happened to K’un-Lun? Why did that have to be so ambiguous? I guess what I like about this finale is that it seems to have ended several of the plotlines that were irritating, so it leaves the possibility of future plotlines being better. On the whole, I think the first season of Iron Fist is about as good as most first seasons of shows. The problem with that is this is Marvel Netflix, which already had three stellar first seasons of shows in Daredevil, Jessica Jones, and Luke Cage, so it’s harder to be okay with a show in the same continuity that’s merely...okay. But I like Danny, I surprisingly also like Ward now, I love Colleen, and I’m interested to see where this can go next.
Things I Liked
Things I Didn’t
Okay, pretty standard revenge arc for Danny here. He wants to kill Harold for murdering his parents, but when he comes close to getting it, he realizes he’s better than that and backs down. Seems like Gao was tricking him, trying to get him to damage his chi permanently by killing Harold. Because Danny didn’t, he was able to summon the Iron Fist in time to deflect the bullet. And this would all be very fine if his arc hadn’t been so incoherent all season.
I pretty much just want Colleen to continue being awesome.
Wow, I actually like Ward and dislike Joy now. But Joy’s descent into being willing to have Danny killed was as muddled as Danny’s arc. Her motivations and loyalties are extremely unclear.
The Watcher's Diary
In this blog, I'll be reviewing, analyzing, and generally fangirling over excellent television. Exhibit A: the Whedonverse.