Netflix's next great Marvel adventure is "Iron Fist," the story of a billionaire who "comes back to life" after disappearing in a plane crash with his parents as a child. His struggle to reconnect with old friends and reclaim his family's company are only half the story, however, as he uses the secret skills he learned while away to fight crime.
On top of that very familiar origin story, Danny Rand (Finn Jones) has more in common with Oliver Queen (Stephen Amell) than expected.
After returning to reclaim his old life, it becomes apparent that Danny is no longer the kid he used to be, given that he's mastered martial arts and committed to a mission to save his city from crime. Every good hero needs a mysterious backstory, and Oliver and Danny's tragic tale of victim turned vigilante is tried and true in the comic book world.
Danny also has a childhood friend, Joy Meachum (Jessica Stroup), who will serve as his confidant and probable love interest, despite being completely unaware of his new double life. Laurel Lance (Katie Cassidy) took on this role for Oliver -- though admittedly the dynamic was different, given that Oliver disappeared later in life while he was already romantically attached to Laurel.
Another female character, Colleen Wing (Jessica Henwick), helps Danny on his crimefighting mission, and she seriously reminds us of Diggle (David Ramsey). Gruff and blunt and completely awesome, Colleen makes for a perfect sidekick, and like Diggle, we expect she'd probably punch you if she ever heard you call her that.
"Iron Fist" will also apparently feature flashbacks to Danny's time away after his plane crash, which is a major element of "Arrow" as well. One can only hope that the "Iron Fist" flashbacks will be better received by fans than Oliver's various island flashbacks.
Finally, "Iron Fist" fits into the preestablished MCU of Netflix in very much the same way that "Arrow" fits into the DC universe currently on The CW. With "Jessica Jones," "Daredevil" and "Luge Cage" all available for crossovers with "Iron Fist," we can't wait to see how this new show fits into the shared universe and what similarities or differences we notice from the CW's "Arrow-verse."
Despite these somewhat overwhelming similarities, there are some key differences we're excited to see "Iron Fist" tackle. Danny didn't just pick up martial arts on his travels, he picked up a superpower along the way too. The ability to call on the Iron Fist, which puts him a cut above Oliver Queen. The addition of this new ability -- and how and where he got it -- will obviously take the show in different directions than "Arrow."
We're also interested to see how Danny will cope with being an orphan, a struggle we never had to watch Oliver go through. Given that Oliver's father was the only one to die (while his mother and sister remained alive and well in Star City), he had a family to come home to. Danny, on the other hand, lost his only family at a young age, and grew up virtually alone. That's a pretty huge difference in each vigilante's origin story.
No matter how similar or different, we expect Netflix's newest MCU show to be a hit -- it's not like they've ever let us down before.
"Iron Fist" premieres Friday, March 17th at 3 a.m. ET/12 a.m. PT on Netflix.