The Marvel Universe is about to get a fistful with the arrival of the final Defender. Danny Rand (Finn Jones) is coming back to New York after 15 years away in the mystical city of K’un-Lun while wielding the power of the Iron Fist. In the new Netflix series, Rand will take back his father’s corporate empire and get rid of the Hand plaguing his beloved city.
Debuting in Marvel Premiere #15 in 1974, Iron Fist was created by Roy Thomas and Gil Kane as a response to the Bruce Lee explosion in the early ‘70s. By harnessing his chi, Iron Fist becomes a living weapon and has been an integral part of the Marvel Universe, having been a member of teams like the Defenders, Thunderbolts, and the New Avengers.
For those unfamiliar with the Immortal Weapon and want to get better acquainted, there are a ton of sweet omnibus collections to check out of Danny Rand doing his thing. Below are some great Iron Fist comic books to pick up.
9. Marvel Premiere #15
The very first appearance of Iron Fist! Danny Rand first kicked his way into Marvel through issue #15 of Marvel Premiere, which can be bought digitally on comiXology. A bigger collection, Iron Fist Epic Collection: The Fury of Iron Fist, collects the whole introductory run of Iron Fist from Marvel Premiere.
8. Deadly Hands of Kung Fu Omnibus (Vol. 1)
A mammoth collection released in late 2016, Deadly Hands of Kung Fu Omnibus collects the popular cult, martial arts comic series Marvel released in the ‘70s, which spotlighted ass-kickers like Shang-Chi, Iron Fist, and the Sons of the Tiger.
7. Power Man and Iron Fist Epic Collection
One of the best-known duos in comics not named Batman and Robin are Luke Cage and Iron Fist, known together as the Heroes for Hire. Mary Jo Duffy and Chris Claremont wrote their first team-up, which is conveniently collected in a big epic collection released by Marvel in 2015.
6. Iron Fist: The Book of Changes
In short, Iron Fist teams up with Ghost Rider. That’s enough. While you can track down every issue, including Spider-Man #40 to 41, which is part of the story, a complete collection releasing in April will have the whole saga in one package for your convenience.
5. Iron Fist: The Return of K’un-Lun
Danny Rand got his own spotlight solo series in the ‘90s and churned out some great pieces of action comics of the decade. Writers like James Felder, Dan Jurgens, Len Wein, Gene Ha, and others pen Iron Fist going up against the Steel Serpent and teaming up with the one and only Wolverine.
4. Daredevil: The Devil, Inside and Out
Though naturally, it’s a comic on Daredevil, Ed Brubaker’s run in the series features Danny Rand substituting as Daredevil while Matt Murdock serves time in jail shortly after Civil War. Though you don’t get a lot of Danny Rand in these comics, it’s still cool to see the Immortal Weapon wear different colors. And the events of this comic only set up for the definitive, modern Iron Fist comics in…
3. The Immortal Iron Fist
In 2007, Iron Fist got the revival of a lifetime in The Immortal Iron Fist. Featuring a murderer’s row of talent consisting of Ed Brubaker, Matt Fraction, and David Aja, Immortal Iron Fist is a great series about Danny Rand learning more about his Iron Fist heritage than he ever has before. From working with the Iron Fist that preceded him, Orson Randall, to entering a tournament with champions from the other six capital cities of heaven, Immortal Iron Fist indulges in the character’s kung fu inspirations while forging a funny, exciting story entirely of its own.
2. The Defenders (2011)
Before Iron Fist joins his Netflix buddies on The Defenders, Matt Fraction wrote Defenders in 2011, featuring a roster of Doctor Strange, Red She-Hulk, Namor, the Silver Surfer, and Iron Fist. Though canceled at issue #12, Fraction’s Defenders features the writer’s signature humor with idiosyncratic personalities cobbled together to become something more.
1. Power Man and Iron Fist Vol. 1: The Boys are Back in Town
The Heroes for Hire are back! Just after Marvel’s 2015 “All-New, All-Different” initiative, Marvel reunited Luke Cage and Iron Fist in a revival of their classic comic from David F. Walker. Fun, fun, fun is the keyword here as Danny and Luke clean up New York from a point they know best: street-level.
Marvel’s Iron Fist premieres March 17.
Photos via Marvel Comics