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Superheroes!

Discussion in 'Arts & Entertainment' started by EgonSpengler, Mar 10, 2015.

  1. CivCube

    CivCube Interphasin'

    Joined:
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    5,699
    I had to stop after the first episode.
     
  2. EgonSpengler

    EgonSpengler Chieftain

    Joined:
    Jun 26, 2014
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    I've watched the first few eps of Iron Fist. I don't think it's the train-wreck that the overall tenor of the reviews would lead you to believe it is. Right now it's got a 37 on Metacritic, where Batman v Superman got a 44. I think that's a little silly, but I do think Iron Fist made some strange choices.

    Critics were only given 6 episodes to review. I can't figure out that decision. I can't remember if other Netflix series did it that way, but it was an odd choice that may have really hurt this show.

    The early episodes feel like a prologue to whatever the story will eventually be, and I'm not sure what the writers are waiting for. Daredevil sort of took a similar approach, but as a friend said, at least Matt was Daredevil right from the beginning. iirc, the first scene in Daredevil is when he frees the women from the shipping container, in his black proto-costume, and he does some superhero stuff, like bouncing a short length of pipe in that physics-defying way that is his signature move in the comics. And the final scene of Daredevil's 2nd episode became that show's iconic moment. Some say it was among the best fight scenes ever filmed, a totally unfair yardstick against which to measure Iron Fist, but hey.

    The central conflict of the first couple of episodes - can Danny convince people he is who he claims to be? - isn't compelling enough by itself, especially in a superhero show. The audience knows he is, so there's no mystery there, and the character drama would be a nice B-plot (I liked Big Al, the homeless guy Danny meets in the park), but doesn't carry 2 episodes. After almost 3 hours, I can't tell you who the show's central villain is (I have a guess who it is, having watched Daredevil, and I can't decide if I think that's clever or not). If Harold Meachum is the show's Big Bad, it's unclear.

    The writers decided to make Danny a bit of a rube. Rather than it being a character-building flaw, I thought he just came across as a dope. There are hints that life at the monastery wasn't all beautiful mountain vistas and Buddhist wisdom, and that Danny has a little PTSD, which is a much more interesting way to go, imo. As of episode 3, it looks like he may be getting away from the "wide-eyed country kid in the big city" thing, so maybe that's just another instance of the story taking too long to get into gear.

    I think all of the Netflix Marvel shows have labored under the weight of 13 episodes. Jessica Jones and Luke Cage each had at least one episode that was a chore to watch; season 2 of Daredevil used the length to tell two stories; and Luke Cage took a bit of a nose-dive in its 2nd half. Maybe Iron Fist deserved to be 8 episodes, and it really takes off in its 2nd half. Here's hoping.
     
  3. Cutlass

    Cutlass The Man Who Wasn't There.

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    I'm near the end of the season of IF. It's neither great nor bad. But the story as a whole is part of the background for where I think they're planning to go in the future.
     
  4. EgonSpengler

    EgonSpengler Chieftain

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    I'm not as far as along, but I agree it's neither good nor bad. The massive pile-on it's getting seems excessive, and I suspect some people just enjoy being negative. OTOH, the show does seem to be deliberately avoiding anything superpowered, heroic, or electrifying. I don't quite understand how the producers of a show about a guy with supernaturally-charged martial arts who puts on a mask and fights evil greenlit this particular script, which seems to include very little of that stuff. An artistic "deconstruction" is very challenging, because you can't compromise the essence of the thing, or you're just demolishing it. I'm not even 100% sure a deconstruction is what they were attempting here, but it kind of feels like it, and that's certainly been a recurrent theme over the last couple of decades.
     
  5. Cutlass

    Cutlass The Man Who Wasn't There.

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    EgonSpengler likes this.
  6. EgonSpengler

    EgonSpengler Chieftain

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    I finished Iron Fist over the weekend. A big meh. It wasn't as awful as the reviews seem to be saying, but there wasn't a lot that I liked. I don't really know what the writers were trying to do. They seemed reluctant to make a superhero show I don't know if I could summarize the story. I wonder what this show's 'elevator pitch' was.
     

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