New York Comic-Con had its biggest day on Saturday, and aside from The Walking Dead, THE biggest panel of the day was no doubt the panel for Marvel's Netflix Series!
Fans are already in love with Daredevil and Jessica Jones, and they're falling in love with Luke Cage even as we speak. Anticipation is sky-high for the next series in the Netflix MCU saga, Iron Fist - as well as the event miniseries that will bring the heroes of all four series together, The Defenders.
...But Marvel fans came to NYCC wondering if they would get to see the future of Marvel Netflix (let's just go ahead and call it Netflix MCU Phase 2), which will feature new series like The Punisher (already filming), and Shang-Chi: Master of Kung Fu (announced). So did the NYCC Marvel Netflix panel deliver? Read on to find out.
The panel started with a footage montage of the Defenders series we've seen so far - Daredevil, Jessica Jones and Luke Cage. The footage replayed some of the biggest moments from each show - with plenty of hard-hitting action and quotables. It was an impressive supercut that got the crowd hyped for IRON FIST!!!
We saw a new teaser for Iron Fist, which featured threats (someone holding a hatchet), blood dripping from a fence, a bunch of menacing-looking ninjas, and the rear-shot reveal of none other than Danny Rand/Iron Fist. We then loop back to the first teaser, with Rand punching out his hospital wall. Cue the crowd cheers.
Marvel TV head Jeph Loeb came out to work the crowd (wearing a silly light up costume and Iron Fist tee-shirt). He told the crowd that in the Ferris Bueller spirit, until he tells us to leave, don't leave. We should probably expect some big surprises to come. Loeb then split the crowd in order to have them chant "Marvel's / Iron / Fist / on Netflix!" combining fan love with free marketing and promotion. He then genuinely thanked the fans for all the support of the Netflix MCU, and thanked the people of Marvel and Netflix who make it happen.
Loeb teased Iron Fist by letting the crowd know that they just finished wrapping Iron Fist this morning! He teased the footage we are going to see, with the usual warning that Marvel's real-life Agents of SHIELD will snatch us up for bootlegging.
He was then interrupted as Erik LaRay Harvey (aka Luke Cage's Diamondback!) took the stage! He thanked Harvey for his dedication and secrecy in keeping his role in Luke Cage a total secret. Needless to say, the crowd rewarded him with cheers. We then got to watch Diamondback's "Joker scene" from Luke Cage, in which he interrupts a meeting of crime bosses to... make his presence felt (no spoilers). It's a scene that definitely stood in memory after watching Luke Cage.
Next up, it was time for Iron Fist.
Panel: Scott Buck (writer) / Finn Jones / Jessica Stroup / David Wenham / Tom Pelphrey/ Jessica Henwick / Rosario Dawson
The Iron Fist panelist came out next. One surprise guest was Rosario Dawson, who has been in every Marvel Netflix series as Claire Temple; another was Jessica Henwick, as Misty Knight's future cohort, Colleen Wing. Loeb teased that we'll "be seeing a lot of her." Of course, series lead Finn Jones got the crowd into an uproar when he came out.
CLIP #1: Loeb set up the footage we'd see by explaining Danny Rand's origin. The actual clip saw Rand (as a man) returning to NYC and walking through the streets and skyscrapers with childlike wonder. He sees his family company on Vanderbilt Ave. and tells a nearby food vendor "That's my building!" to which the vendor is understandably skeptical. Rand enters the building asking for Haorld Meachum, but the front desk clerk is also skeptical. She waves Danny to the side, where he watches a video intro about Rand Enterprises featuring Harold and his son Ward. Security then arrives to escort Danny (who does look like a street vagrant) out of the building. Danny then displays some calm - even considerate - martial arts prowess, dancing around the guards, lightly disarming them, and spinning his way into the elevator to go up and see Harold Meachum. His fight style and manner are cool, and compassionate, using non-aggressive fight styles like Jujitsu.
Jones talked about the excitement of landing the role, as he and Loeb joked about the grueling martial arts training he went through (3 hours every morning!) and fight styles he had to learn.
Stroup talked about knowing Tom Pelphrey beforehand and screen testing with him. She said she's proud to be his sister (in the show). Pelphrey had just as much praise for Stroup, "Super cool chick, and funny!"
CLIP #2: The next scene we saw was Ward and Joy Meachum talking business at lunch, when they are interrupted by Danny. Danny is telling Ward that he used to look at him as a brother and asking what happened. Ward responds angrily that the Danny he knew is dead, and he wants him to stay that way. Danny slaps a water glass clear across the restaurant and he and Ward almost square off. Joy stops things cold by telling Danny that he's not their brother and needs to wake up to that. Danny yells back that he doesn't need them "I have Hogarth now!" setting the crowd off with cheers.
CLIP #3: Was a more brutal scene of Danny Rand fighting - a hallway full of Asian gangsters with hatchets. He pulls out a tiger claw stance and we get to see an impressive sequence of fight choreography (including overhead shot sequence) as Danny tries to reach an elevator where the gangsters are trying to capture Joy. Loeb followed the clip by teasing that the sequence continues with the fight on the elevator.
Jessica Henwick talked about seeing Colleen Wing for the first time, "What a dope character... I took it very seriously. Then we got to see a clip of her fight.
CLIP #4 Was of Wing in a cage match with a big man who yells "This little girl thinks she can fight me?" Colleen then beats his ass and another guys ass to the tune of "Let Your Feet Stomp." Again, the fight choreograhpy is impressively brutal, as the men hold Colleen down and try to break her arm - only to have her reverse on them, knock one guy out and break the other's arm. The broken arm man still tries to fight, so Colleen beats him against the corner of the ring until his blood is raining down on the canvas.
CLIP #5 Showed Danny waking up in bed (a hospital bed possibly, face marred from fighting, possibly after a PTSD onset) to Harold Meachum standing over him saying "Hello Danny... Do you remember that song I used to sing that would annoy the shit out of you?"
Danny responds, "Danny Boy, right?"
Harold nods and hums the song, singing the lyrics "And I'm dead / as dead as dead can be..."
Danny says he thought Harold was dead; and Harold says he thought Danny was dead, and that they then have that in common. He knows that Danny was taking in by the order of the "Crane Mother," and is curious where the monastery is. Danny answers "Kunlun," and explains that he probably never should have left. He confesses to training as a warrior and how combat brought him focus. Harold presses him to find out more, and Danny tells him of how he became a warrior of the Iron Fist, in a long line of them, and it is his mission to destroy The Hand. "I'm the only one who can do it."
Harold promises to take care of everything, and that Danny should go back to sleep. Somehow, he doesn't seem sincere.
The Iron Fist Trailer was next!
The trailer opens with Danny Rand meditating in a nice NYC apartment. A voiceover tells him that enemies are all around him, and we see the characters of the show. The voice continues to instruct Danny on focus and being the Iron Fist living weapon, as we get a montage of fight scenes and action. At the very end, Danny, shirtless, reveals the Iron Fist Tattoo on his chest. We also got to see the very first iron fist visual effect - a glowing hand that almost burns with X-ray energy, allowing us to see Danny Rand's bones.
After the Iron Fist trailer, The Punisher himself, Jon Bernthal, took the stage! Loeb told the crowd they're officially a week into production on The Punisher Netflix series.
Bernthal thanked fans, law enforcement, the military and everyone who made this possible. He told fans he will honor the character, and then revealed that Deborah Ann Woll will be joining him in the show!
Next, Finn Jones returned to the stage, to introduce "some friends I've been hanging out with..."
And with that, The Defenders teaser played as Jessica Jones (Krysten Ritter), Daredevil (Charlie Cox), Luke Cage (Mike Colter) and Iron Fist (Finn Jones) - the full Defenders roster - took the stage!!!
Loeb then revealed the villain of The Defenders - and it's Sigourney Weaver!
That was it for the panel, but Marvel fans are your minds BLOWN????
Daredevil seasons 1 and 2, Jessica Jones season 1, and Luke Cage season 1 are all available on Netflix. Iron Fist will premiere on March 17, 2017. The Defenders expected later in the year. The Punisher does not have a release date yet.