Iron Fist will bring the character of #DannyRand to live-action form for the very first time in his 40+ years of existence. During New York Comic-Con, we got an exciting new trailer for the series, and I noticed that Rand was doing all the butt-kicking he's known for in normal clothes.
I then realized that, because this will be the character's origin story to set him up for The Defenders, it's possible that his super suit is not in Season 1, so a question popped into my head: Will we get to see his costume before the season ended? Should we?
Does Iron Fist's Suit Work In A First Season Of Netflix's TV Universe?
It might sound like an odd question for a superhero show but it's something we need to explore with this side of the #MCU. The Netflix shows deal with a much more adult tone than other comic book series and movies, so for projects like these, a costume has to be handled extremely carefully.
It could look very "goofy" and therefore feel out of place for the situations dealt with in the series, which we saw happen with Diamondback in Luke Cage. In a largely serious narrative, a guy suddenly pops up with an armor and a helmet. Granted, it was for protection against Luke but the overacting and design didn't help.
A costume could also blend perfectly in the world, like Matt Murdock's armor in Daredevil: It didn't lose the flair of a superhero suit but we could still believe that a guy living in the dangerous Hell's Kitchen put the armor on to scare his opponents and to enhance his abilities while protecting himself. The same approach would have to be used for #IronFist, whose comic book costume has been somewhat more, er, flamboyant than others. That '70s era open chest and giant yellow collar aren't going to work in Netflix's grounded series.
How The Costume Should Be Handled
Thanks to the source material, the people in charge of Iron Fist already have a great advantage: The suit could be the mantle of the Iron Fist. In the comics, Danny Rand already had his costume when going through his last combat trial. From what we've seen in the trailers, Rand already possesses the power of the Iron Fist so it'd be much easier to introduce the costume that way.
In the trailer though, an emphasis was made on Danny's chest tattoo so that could be his mantle; perhaps the costume is just an added bonus later on. But, even if that's the case, Danny was seen wearing his signature colors from the comics in NYCC's trailer, so there's a precedent for a source of inspiration, which would make the suit's introduction smoother.
We've explored the suit when it comes to the tone of the show, but what about the story? Narrative-wise, there are two possibilities for the tights: Them appearing throughout the first season or at the very end. So which of these would fit better? Which would be more likely?
What If The Suit Appears Throughout Season 1?
A lot of the fun from live-action superhero adventures comes from seeing the main hero/heroine in costume. It really drives the point that what you're watching is based on a comic book. Before, the costume was often what got people into the theaters or to their TV screens. On that fact alone, I can argue that it's a certainty we'll see Danny Rand looking for trouble in his tights.
However, from a story standpoint, the tights are not really essential. This will be a gritty tale of a young man who comes back to his city to reclaim his company from the man who killed his parents; in that sense, him putting a costume wouldn't fit. That type of approach, if handled by the right storyteller, works perfectly but that is not, for the most part, what Netflix shows are going for.
Don't get me wrong, I'd love to see the suit in action from the beginning, but I'd also be comfortable if we get it in its full glory in #TheDefenders after an entire season's worth of teases. With that said...
It's Much More Likely We'll See His Suit At The Very End Of Season 1
In this modern era of superhero media, we've transcended suits being the main aspect that visually identifies someone as having powers. Audiences get the superhero thing now; they get attached to the characters regardless of their appearance.
The same could be applied to Iron Fist. Netflix has Jessica Jones and Luke Cage, two series where costumes weren't necessary to tell the story, proving that a suit is not essential for the success of a superhero project. In Daredevil Season 1, we didn't get to see the iconic red costume for the hero until the very last episode, and even then, it was just a brief glimpse. As mentioned above, Netflix and Marvel will most likely take inspiration from that and leave us with the anticipation for seeing Danny fight in his costume for The Defenders.
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Something we can be certain of is that we'll eventually get to see Danny Rand wearing his Iron Fist garb. Maybe we'll see it in his series' first season or not until The Defenders.
When do you think we'll see Iron Fist in costume? What kind of design should we expect? Are you excited for the show? Let me know in the comments!