Alright, if you’re reading this, either you’ve already watched The Defenders (Good for you!) or you’re ok with spoilers in which case, you are braver than I.
Anyways, I gave a (relatively) brief spoiler free review. Now it’s time to go a little deeper and talk about this show.
Warning, spoilers follow
Alright, so in The Defenders, an evil ancient criminal organization known as The Hand shows up in New York. They cause a massive earthquake (4.4 ha – I said massive. We barely roll over for these in California). The quake is revealed to have been caused by The Hand digging a giant really really deep hole in the middle of New York because they’re evil, or something. We found out about this in DareDevil and we’ll return to it later.
The important thing here is that we learn that Sigourney Weaver is our new big bad. Except that shes dying from cancer, or something. They don’t really tell us, just that shes going to die soon. Which seems strange for an organization we’ve already seen can resurrect the dead. But you know, roll with it.
Soon we get to meet the other big bads, Madam Gao (we’ve already met her in DareDevil and in Iron Fist), Bakudo (Also from Iron Fist), and an African and Japanese man. They have names, I forget them and don’t feel like looking it up. Also they don’t really matter. And of course Sigourney Weaver, who is the ultimate leader. The five of them make up the five Fingers of The Hand (get it?). They have run out of the substance that they use to resurrect themselves in order to bring back The Black Sky (Elektra – we already knew she was coming back from DareDevil).
Alright – gripe time. It’s stupid, and not really a big deal. But these “fingers’ we find out are from the same mystical city that Danny Rand, aka, the Iron Fist, trained at. But they are hundreds, maybe even thousands of years old, because of “the substance”. Heres my gripe. These people are centuries old, and the only name they’ve come up with is “The Substance”? I mean they couldn’t call it reraisium, or reseructium or something? Those are just from the top of my head,
Cut to episode 3, some stuff has happened and all of our heroes are at The Hands not so secret corporate headquarters. Danny Rand tells them hes going to destroy them. They all nod and then try to shoot him with tranq darts because they need The Iron Fist for some unknown reason (Remember the hole?). Enter awesome fight scene with all of The Defenders together for the first time.
In the lead up to this, if Jessica Jones wasn’t already your favorite character, shes about to be. Matt Murdock, who shes already figured out, steals her scarf to hide his identity. Matt/DareDevil is the only one in this series who bothers to do this. But her response to this is “You look like an asshole.” His reply, “It’s your scarf.” Keep in mind this happens after Matt has climbed and fought his way up several floors. Jessica joins him after taking the elevator. One of the many reasons she is awesome.
Anyways, all four then fight their way out of the building and take refuge in a chinese resturant because of course they do. Stick shows up, expositon, team up, yay!
New gripe. Luke Cage does his signature, knock down a door , and enters the fight with Danny. They all get together and run away. I don’t understand why. Seriously DareDevil, Jessica, and Danny could have left and let Luke take care of the Hand guys. They really aren’t needed. We’ve seen Luke stand up to being hit by bullets, and we’ve seen him use a circular saw on himself. Nothing they have is going to hurt him. On these shows, the only things that have hurt him was a shotgun blast to the face, and special bullets made from outer space. (I am not making that up). There is no reason for Luke to run away.
Point in fact, in a fight between Danny and Luke that happens previous to this. Danny tries in vain to hurt Luke. Punch after punch, kick after kick. Some impressive jumping kicks and spinning and Luke just looks at him like he’s stupid and then throws him around. It’s not until he summons the Iron Fist and hits him across the face that Luke is finally thrown back and taken somewhat out of the fight. I mean, not really. As far as I can tell he’s not even bruised.
This leads me to another issue. Luke Cage is shown to have been knocked out and nearly killed by a shotgun blast to the face. Danny Rand has been shown to be able to knock down an entire wall with his fist. Yet Luke was just fine after taking that fist to the head. Later on he gets hit by a truck. Like a semi, going pretty damn fast. He shows up later with the aforementioned African Finger guy, with Luke being none the worse for wear.
These don’t make sense. Luke might be able to shrug off bullets that can’t break his skin, fine. But blunt force trauma? I’m pretty sure you can break a bone without breaking the skin. Maybe he also has unbreakable bones? They don’t ever say that though, only thing that makes sense.
Anyways, other stuff happens, climactic battle at the bottom of that big hole. Again, Luke Cage is really all thats needed here. No one is going to be a challenge. They can hit him hard, try to cut him up with swords, but none of that will do any good. Or will it? In Jessica Jones’ series, her super strength can send Luke flying. In his fight with Danny we can see that the fist can throw him around. But Dannys other best shots don’t do anything.
Through the rest of the series Luke is being thrown around by punches and kicks from the Hand. Why? Why can they do what Danny couldn’t until he called upon his glowy fist. This is inconsistent and it’s annoying. The only person who really would be a threat to Luke is Madam Gao, because she’s a Jedi…or Sith I suppose. She can push people and things around just by moving her hand towards it. I suppose it’s a Chi thing here rather than The Force. But seriously, she’s the only one that’s a threat to him. Bakudo? The Japanese guy? They use knives and swords, those won’t hurt him. Ok, The Black Sky – Elektra. Nope swords and Sais. Alright, Sigourney Weaver? Nope got killed before this point by Elektra. And Stick killed that African Finger, but he was using kids with guns and swords too. None of these are threats to Luke.
Instead of The Defenders, it should be Luke Cage takes out a bunch of ninjas, oh and some other people helped. Kinda, not really.
Alright, gripes aside. It was still a lot of fun and I enjoyed it. Finn Jones (Danny Rand) did way better, I found him a more realistic martial arts master this time around. (he was terrible in Iron Fist, particularly when compared to Colleen Wing who deserves her own show) Hes still not nearly as good as Charlie Cox, which may not be a fair comparison, because he is awesome. And not just with his fighting, but Charlie makes you believe that Matt is blind, but that his senses more than make up for it. The way he’s able to stare at nothing while moving his head listening, or pointing out what waiters are bringing from across the room, I assume by the smell.
And of course Jessica Jones. She is by far the most awesome of them all. Shes, not the fighter and acrobat that DareDevil is. She doesn’t have a special glowy fist and martial arts. She’s a brawler, same as Luke Cage, but she can be hurt. But more than that, she uses her head. She investigates and figures out Matts past, what building and some history of The Hand that none of the others get. Also, she’s sarcastic as hell and I love her for it.
Alright, bottom line. The show is awesome. Even if really, Luke Cage could have handled it all on his own. His character probably wouldn’t have, but he could’ve. It’s not a perfect 5/5, it starts off slow, The Substance is a stupid name. Danny is really not needed at all. In fact he gets tied up by his friends to keep him from The Hand. And when The Hand takes him anways, he uses his hand to do what The Hand wanted, and is totally obvious that he should simply not have used the hand.
Anyways, 4/5. And now just to wait for The Punisher. (after credits scene cause: marvel!)