TV Review: Marvel’s Iron Fist: Episode 3: Rolling Thunder Cannon Punch (Netflix)

Much like the actual title of this episode, it really accelerates the plot and tension, rolling down the hits, striking hard like thunder, and propelling like a cannon concluding the […]

Much like the actual title of this episode, it really accelerates the plot and tension, rolling down the hits, striking hard like thunder, and propelling like a cannon concluding the episode like a punch to the chest, catching viewers by surprise.

There is much to like about this episode, and personally, by far this is where the show finds its footing and propels everything forward.

Episode 3 really steps up the game. Although there is action, there isn’t too much that is randomly thrown around to a finite degree. Although the action is not the major focus, it’s there, sparingly. But what makes this episode great is the fact that it builds smooth momentum for the series. There is a lot of suspense in terms of Danny being on the verge of reclaiming his family name and fortune. But, the themes in this episode is very strong, focusing on important things that are beyond money, and the things that people sacrifice for money. Such examples which include the reappearance of Hogarth (played wonderfully by Carrie Ann Moss) who is willing to sacrifice receiving compensation for her services since she owes a lot to Danny’s family out of respect and prior history.

Colleen Wing gets to do a lot more here in this episode, and as it turns out, makes an interesting 360 in terms of honoring her own Bushido code and then back peddling on those same principals. There is a great fight scene with her at an underground fight club that causes her to take up the alias (which is in reference to her moniker in the comics) and brutally break her opponent. Joy even has shades of cold-heartedness as she is internally conflicted by her choices to face Danny prior to court. Although she cares for Danny as a friend and offers money, she sacrifices her humanity by being a business person, not so different from her father. Ward becomes much more aggressive and cold whenever he is interaction with Danny, and it definitely builds in tension whenever Danny and Ward conflict.

There are some solid scenes that are well scripted, performed and shot that detail the inter-dimensional relationships and development that each character has with one another. Danny proves that there is more to this than getting the money, it’s all about restoring the good faith of his family name. And much like that, I have good faith in this series, especially with what this episode displays. The cliffhanger definitely catches you by surprise in a way that kinda plays with one’s expectations, and asks the viewer to wonder” how will Danny get out this?” Harold also has a moment, and the viewer gets an idea of where Harold aligns himself with begging for more answers to what Harold is planning for Danny.

This episode really is a springboard that starts to move things around in this puzzle piece of a plot, aligning it to something really great. The cast do a fantastic job in each of the roles that the play, and Shankland does a good job at directing this episode, making it action-packed, while pacing the story along well.  Tom Peeples writing in this episode is very strong, and builds off of Scott Bucks first two episodes with ease, free from the confines of introductions, focusing primarily on character moments, actions and progress that is engaging. The focus on comparisons and contrasts between each character and how their decisions and loyalties parallel, contradict and align with each other are balanced out. Admittedly at times, the choreography can seem a bit a little wonky a bit, but it doesn’t take away from.the development of the plot. This episode makes the viewer happy to know that they have a full season to binge on simultaneously upon release and not have to wait impatiently every week as people do for a weekly television series. It’s a definite improvement over the last episode, and continues to provide more promise for what lies ahead.

Anthony Andujar Jr.

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