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HomeGadgetMarvel's New Iron Fist Comedian is a Pure, Martial Arts Blast

Marvel’s New Iron Fist Comedian is a Pure, Martial Arts Blast


Lin Lie, the new Iron Fist, in a variant cover for Iron Fist #2.

Picture: Jim Cheung/Marvel Comics

Since Miles Morales debuted within the Final Universe again in 2011 and slowly grew to become a family identify, Marvel’s had no scarcity of latest, youthful characters tackle the names of established legacy heroes like Iron Man and Thor. Every new hero has had consideration grabbing headlines, and for a lot of of them—like Sam Wilson’s Captain America or Jane Foster’s Thor—the range may be very a lot The Level of their existence, implicitly or in any other case. And over time, followers of those newer characters have been rewarded, as many have or will quickly grace the MCU with their presence within the coming years.

The following hero to obtain a contemporary replace is Iron Fist, a personality who may most likely use it greater than most. As soon as he was introduced to be receiving his personal Netflix sequence, many followers have been hoping the character of Danny Rand can be performed by an Asian actor, if solely as a result of the concept of a white boy being nice at kung fu raises some eyebrows. Whereas Finn Jones’ casting was definitely removed from the one drawback with Iron Fist, it didn’t precisely assist the Netflix-Marvel enterprise, which might later change into identified for its incapacity to actually do something with its restricted provide of Asian characters. Nonetheless, that Iron Fist’s second season ended with Jessica Henwick’s scene-stealing Colleen Wing changing into the brand new Fist indicated that the present was listening to its critics and needed to embrace the concept of a legacy mantle. However the present was canceled earlier than we may see that play out, and it doesn’t appear to be Henwick’s due again for a return like Netflix co-stars Charlie Cox and Vincent D’Onofrio anytime quickly.

Danny has been the Iron Fist of the first Marvel Universe since Roy Thomas and Gil Kane first launched him in 1974, however the mantle has an extended in-universe legacy behind it, and extra Fists have been revealed all through the character’s close to 50-year comics historical past. Most of these Fists have been his predecessors, together with one who was a part of the prehistoric Avengers. And his successors have been quick time period, like Pei—a teenage woman who was the co-lead of Comixology’s Immortal Iron Fists again in 2017—and really briefly Okoye, in direction of the tip of the latest Coronary heart of the Dragon miniseries. In it, Danny and Pei transferred their powers to her so she may save the world, after which she relinquished the ability so the Iron Fist cycle may start anew.

Lin Lie and Danny Rand meet for the first time.

Lin Lie and Danny Rand meet for the primary time.
Picture: Michael Yg & Jay David Ramos/Marvel Comics

With the MCU now having managed to safe an enormous identify Asian hero within the type of Simu Liu’s Shang-Chi, you possibly can virtually see how Iron Fist’s new solo comedian—by author Alyssa Wong, artists Michael Yg and Sean Chen, inker Victor Olazaba, and colorist Jay David Ramos—is making an attempt to proper the ship even additional. Selecting up the title of the Residing Weapon is Shanghai teen Lin Lie, who breaks the mildew of latest teen heroes like Miles, Robbie Reyes, and Kamala Khan by beginning out as an authentic character earlier than transitioning to a legacy hero. Launched because the superhero Sword Grasp in 2019 as a part of a collaboration between Marvel and NetEase, Lin Lie was beforehand relegated to occasion tie-ins, the Brokers of Atlas sequence by Greg Pak, Nico Leon, and Gang Hyuk Lim; and a solo comedian by Pak, Shuizhu, and artist Gunji.

Those that are already followers of the character are little question happy to see him boosted to a brand new codename, however newcomers gained’t be confused if Iron Fist is their first time with the child. Within the aftermath of a tie-in comedian in the course of the latest Dying of Physician Unusual occasion, Lin Lie was saved from demise by being granted the powers of the Iron Fist by its supply, the dragon Shou-Lao. Now residing in Ok’un L’un, he and his pal Mei Min work collectively to reacquire the shards of Lin Lie’s Fuxi Sword, a household heirloom beforehand used to halt the return of Chinese language struggle god Chiyou.

All of that might be a strong setup for an Iron Fist miniseries, however what helps Lin Lie stand out is how Wong, Yg, and Chen have neatly managed to make him really feel like a pure extension of the Iron Fist legacy as an alternative of a youthful carbon copy of the established hero. Being an outsider has all the time been part of the hero’s legacy, and the brand new angle right here is that since he didn’t purchase Shou-Lao’s powers via a event like different Iron Fists, a few of Ok’un Lun’s individuals think about Lin Lie a thief who stole an influence they think about rightfully theirs. Being a formidable hero doesn’t assist his case; if something, studying how one can combat from varied Asian Marvel heroes like Shang-Chi and White Fox make him much more unworthy of their eyes. (Yg and Chen’s artwork do a fantastic job of showcasing his tutelage whereas additionally giving him a extra agile, livid transfer set in comparison with different martial artists.)

How Lin Lie got his groove back.

How Lin Lie acquired his groove again.
Picture: Sean Chen, Victor Olazaba, & Jay David Ramos/Marvel Comics

And in contrast to different teen heroes within the Marvel Universe, his assist system is extremely slim, largely by his personal selection. Every time he’s within the regular world to seize sword shards and combat demons, he avoids making an attempt to reconnect with any of the buddies he’s made over time. He additionally actively pushes away a possible mentor within the type of Danny, who refreshingly isn’t in any respect upset that somebody’s borrowing his outdated codename and simply desires to offer assist to a child who clearly wants it. Regardless of all that, Lin Lie is definitely pretty effectively adjusted for his circumstances, Wong writes him as such a decided, well-meaning child that it’s simple to root for him.

The unorthodox approach that Lin Lie grew to become an Iron Fist can be the e book’s most fascinating conceit. Shards of Lin Lie’s sword are embedded in his palms, which means that he can’t merely name upon the ability of Shou-Lao anytime he desires. Within the two points launched to date, his Fist glitches out whereas preventing demons, and out of doors of battle, he brazenly admits that utilizing his palms provides him “fixed, insufferable agony.” Huge Two superheroes are not any stranger to their powers coming with drawbacks, nevertheless it’s a extra uncooked type of vulnerability than we usually get, and it goes a great distance in making Lin Lie compelling and sympathetic. Within the moments the place he’s in a position to push via the ache and summon the Fist, or is being skilled by Mei Min and Ok’un L’un’s Thunderer Yu-Ti, you possibly can see that he’s acquired the makings of a fantastic Iron Fist.

Like different teen heroes introduced onto legacy mantles, it might take time for Lin Mislead take off and headline both his personal solo MCU undertaking or flip up in another person’s story. However Wong, Yg, and Chen have constructed a powerful basis for the character—one which’ll hopefully result in greater, better adventures sooner or later to return.


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