Critics have for the most part enjoyed Marvel’s spate of Netflix programming. Rotten Tomatoes is not a perfect judge, but Daredevil ’s two seasons score a combined 87 percent rating, Jessica Jones has a 93 percent, and Luke Cage a 96 percent. And then there’s Iron Fist, which is due out this Friday. Currently the series about martial arts expert Danny Rand holds a 14 percent (you can read our review here). But, according to star Finn Jones, it’s not that his show is bad, it’s that stuffy reviewers can’t sit back and appreciate a superhero tale the way the fans can. Except for, you know, the other comic book adaptations from the same company they totally like.
“Well I think there’s multiple factors. What I will say is these shows are not made for critics, they are first and foremost made for the fans,“ he told Metro UK. “I also think some of the reviews we saw were seeing the show through a very specific lens, and I think when the fans of the Marvel Netflix world and fans of the comic books view the show through the lens of just wanting to enjoy a superhero show, then they will really enjoy what they see. I think it’s a fantastic show which is really fun and I think it stands up there with the other Defenders’ shows without a doubt.” It’s an argument that doesn’t pan out here, especially when comparing Iron Fist’s reception to that of its franchise-mates.
Jones has become something of a mouthpiece for his project. Earlier this month he leapt to its defense, engaging in a debate with Geeks Of Color creative director Asyiqin Haron. Haron has argued, as many have, that an “Asian Danny Rand could’ve made an even bigger impact.” Jones briefly left Twitter, but has since returned.
UPDATE: In an interview with Radio Times, Jones went even further, arguing that critics are resistant to the show because of Donald Trump rather than its utter blandness. “I’m playing a white American billionaire superhero, at a time when the white American billionaire archetype is public enemy No. 1, especially in the US,” he said. “We filmed the show way before Trump’s election, and I think it’s very interesting to see how that perception, now that Trump’s in power, how it makes it very difficult to root for someone coming from white privilege, when that archetype is public enemy No. 1.” This statement seems to willfully ignore the fact that writers and fans were saying that an Asian American actor should play Danny long before Trump was elected.