Daredevil was great. Jessica Jones was awesome. Luke Cage was decent. Iron Fist was terrible. And now, these four team up to form The Defenders. As always, The Hand is up to something sinister and fate/destiny/screenwriters bring Matt, Jessica, Luke and Danny together to fight this evil force threatening New York. Read our review of season 1 here.
Five Fingers of The Hand
The Hand plays a big part throughout most of Netflix’ Marvel shows. And now they’re the Big Bad again. Daredevil has been fighting them for two seasons and they were the biggest foe of Iron Fist. So these two have every reason to fight them. It’s pretty easy to lure Luke into a Hand storyline, as he is such a goodie-good-guy that just the notion of one evil dude who just happens to be part of The Hand will make him pick up the fight. Jessica however, is a different case. She’s part of such a different setting that it feels a bit forced how she’s brought into all of this. Luckily, she is the coolest character around so once she’s in, it’s all good.
Without giving too much away, The Defenders introduces the ‘Five Fingers of The Hand’; which are their biggest, baddest leaders. You can all guess that the wicked Madame Gao is one of those fingers. As for three of the fingers: wait and see. The thumb (I don’t know, what’s the most important finger? Maybe the middle finger, right? But let’s go with thumb for now) is a new character: Alexandra. She is played by none other than Sigourney Weaver, Queen of Badass Women. And she’s all you’ll want her to be. Alexandra is cool, cunning, sneaky and sassy. And we love us some sassy at The Sassologist!
There aren’t many henchmen this time around. The Hand is more about planning and plotting than they are about fighting and killing. It’s a bit boring at times, but luckily all fingers are pretty damn cool, so that makes up for lack of action. There are some pretty kick-ass action scenes though. Office-fighting is back, a trend set by Captain America in The Winter Soldier (that elevator scene).
Iron Fist is still boring AF
It’s a terrible shame much of the storyline in The Defenders revolves around Iron Fist. And while he’s not as terrible as in his own show, Danny Rand is still the worst character around. It feels like every other line he says is something like “I am the immortal Iron Fist, bla bla bla something about K’un Lun”. There is hardly any chemistry between him and the other three characters. There’s hardly any redeeming him from that shitty show. I don’t care about your chi Danny! Nobody does! So shut up and eat some noodles! Can you watch The Defenders without first seeing Iron Fist? It’s probably for the best if you do.
Talking about chemistry between characters: Jessica Jones has it all. Her scenes with Matt were some of the best. I can see them becoming superhero frenemies at some time. And obviously, she has great chemistry with Luke Cage. So while her fighting The Hand is the least convincing, she steals all the scenes and reminds us all how cool she is. Season two of Jessica Jones should come sooner! It’s great to see Malcolm and Trish again, though sadly they hardly have any impact on the story.
The same goes for most other side characters. Luke Cage’s Misty and Iron Fists’ Colleen get the most action, while Daredevil’s Karen is mostly… just there. Thank God for Foggy, who is sweet and caring as ever. And ofcourse there’s Rosario Dawson as Claire, who had a part in all four shows. It wouldn’t feel the same without her presence.
So is The Defenders worth watching?
Meh. I had pretty high expectations (although, after seeing Iron Fist those were lowered A LOT) so maybe that’s why it all felt a bit underwhelming.
The good parts: Jessica Jones and Matt Murdoch, who were as enjoyable as ever, especially in their scenes together. Colleen, Foggy and Misty as ‘sidekicks’. Sigourney Weaver, and all Five Fingers of The Hand. That fight scene in the office. Most of the jokes. The fact that there are only eight episodes. A certain Deep Blue Sea-like death. Those colour co-ordinated scenes. I really loved that every character has it’s own colour. It’s so well done!
The OK-ish/meh parts: all the other action scenes, or lack of those. Elektra & Daredevil (I see Daredevil and Matt as two different characters in this show). All the other B-side characters. The Hand as an organisation. Luke Cage. Some of the jokes.
The bad parts: the friggin Immortal Iron Fist and his chi. Danny Rand. That last fight, which, can I say, had the Worst Possible Soundtrack ever. Iron Fist’s tattoo. The ending overall. Iron Fist’s fist. The plot revolving around the Iron Fist. The predictability of it all. Oh, and Iron Fist.
Most of what The Defenders did for me was give me a longing for Jessica Jones season 2 and Daredevil season 3, and more hate for a certain blonde character. It could have been worse, but sadly, it also could have been much better.