Wednesday, February 26, 2014

The Last Iron Fist Story…Until The Next One!

TPB:  The Immortal Iron Fist: The Last Iron Fist Story
Writer: Ed Brubaker/Matt Fraction
Artist: David Aja
Price:  $14.99

If you only think of Brubaker as that guy who writes Captain America than you don’t know Brubaker.  From Fatale to Criminal, Brubaker has proven himself an excellent writer of the noir genre.  He’s done amazing independent work on The Authority and has written mainstream marvel titles like Secret Avengers and X-men.  Matt Fraction is best known for his work on Iron Man and several major crossover events in the Marvel Universe such as Fear Itself and AvX.  David Aja is lesser known artist but has illustrated Daredevil and several Wolverine One-shots. 

The Immortal Iron Fist ran for 27 issues starting in 2006 making it the longest solo run in the 30-odd year history of the character.  The book retells the character’s origins while revealing more about the previous avatars of the Iron Fist.  Danny Rand is the Immortal Iron Fist but is he the only one?  When a man wielding the power of the Iron Fist (as well as dual pistols!) comes to visit Danny, he learns that both the legacy of the Iron Fist and the limits to his own powers might not be what they seem. 

While the art and storytelling are both good, Iron Fist just doesn’t seem to have the same action and excitement as other books.  The character’s origin is retold almost every issue throughout the trade as if reminding us that Iron Fist’s most notable power is not being able to sustain a fan following.  While seeing a pistol-carrying Iron Fist is awesome, Danny’s character almost seems superfluous in his own book. 

If you’re looking for a good Iron Fist story though, look to the second trade in this series.  Iron Fist must partake in a martial arts competition in the Seven Capital Cities of Heaven all while learning why his father never became an Iron Fist, leading an insurrection, and protecting the mystical realm from invasion from the outside.  It’s an action packed book with an ambitious plot and a satisfying conclusion.   

Final rating for Vol. 1 (out of 5):

Final rating for Vol. 2 (out of 5):

1 comment:

  1. Like it a lot or like it little, this seems to be the best and most enduring version of Iron Fist to date. Perhaps he's just a second tier character and we shouldn't expect much, especially expect him to carry a monthly series for any length of time. If someone interested in Iron First asks me for a suggestion, I would point them towards the Brubaker-Fraction work without hesitation. Perhaps the upcoming new series will become the definitive version. Who knows? I'm looking forward to checking it out. Thanks for the review and summation, Ken and for shining the spotlight on an under-rated character with some good potential waiting to be tapped.

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