The deadly new Constrictor might strangle Iron Fist’s newest team-up just as it begins.

Constrictor and Sabretooth have a long history of bedeviling Iron Fist. On December 6 in IRON FIST #75, however, things have changed. Sabretooth has aligned himself with Iron Fist and the man in the Constrictor suit has changed, as Frank Payne has died and someone else has taken on his mantel. And that someone has little interest in working with Sabretooth at all.

Writer Ed Brisson teased us with the still unrevealed identity, a possible villain double cross, and what exactly Iron Fist’s quest may have cost him.

Marvel.com: What, as a writer, appealed to you about creating a new Constrictor? Creatively, what challenges does creating a new incarnation of a previously existing character carry with it?

Ed Brisson: Well, I was looking for a good “in” to bring Sabretooth and Iron Fist together. In the past, Sabretooth and Iron Fist have clashed, but more often it’s been Sabretooth and Constrictor as a duo popping up in IRON FIST and, later, in POWER MAN AND IRON FIST. I felt it was a real shame that the original Constrictor, Frank Payne was dead. I mean, both he and Sabretooth had gone straight—or straight-ish—and so, theoretically, they and Iron Fist would be on the same side.

But, alas, Frank was dead.

In tossing the idea around more, I realized that him being dead doesn’t mean I can’t still use him—or rather, someone pretending to be him.

Marvel.com: As much as you can without spoiling things, what does this new Constrictor have in common and how does he differ from his predecessor who used that name?

Ed Brisson: I don’t want to give away too much, but there is a definite relationship between the new Constrictor and the old. The new is driven to “outdo” Frank Payne’s Constrictor for very personal reasons.

Iron Fist (2017) #75

Iron Fist (2017) #75

Marvel.com: What made him a good fit as not just an Iron Fist villain but an Iron Fist villain for this specific moment in time, for this specific arc?

Ed Brisson: For me, it felt like a natural way to bring Iron Fist and Sabretooth together. Iron Fist is after Constrictor because he stole from him and Sabretooth’s going to want to know who the hell is running around ruining his best friend’s legacy—not that Sabretooth has a “best friend,” but if he did, Constrictor/Frank Payne would probably be it.

Also, through Constrictor we’ll eventually get to see a more human side of Sabretooth that we’re not used to seeing.

Marvel.com: How did you and artist Mike Perkins collaborate to bring the villain to life? How did he influence you on elements like personality, history, motivation, and so on and how did you influence him on the villain’s look?

Ed Brisson: Mike has been amazing with character design throughout the series. We’re now 10 issues in and I believe he’s designed at least 10 new characters for the run so far. And they’ve all been great. However, when it came time for the new Constrictor, we decided to maintain the classic look. This guy wants people to think he’s the original Constrictor. He’s using the appearance of being the same person to advance his own criminal agenda.

That said, the body language definitely suggests that there’s a different, cockier man inside the suit. Mike is that master of those subtle cues.

Marvel.com: This book is currently a web of tenuous alliances that seem poised to fall apart at any moment. What is the status of the Iron Fist/Sabretooth partnership as well as that of Constrictor and Choshin at this time? How do cracks in those alliances spell danger for all involved not just the two most directly affected?

Ed Brisson: I think Sabretooth and Iron Fist are becoming more comfortable with one another, but that can change at any moment. Neither particularly likes the other, but I think that there will be a newfound respect for one another by the time we’re through with them.

As for Constrictor and Choshin, there’s trouble a brewing. Constrictor tried to pull a fast one on Choshin and Choshin is not a man you want to double cross.

Marvel.com: If you had to boil down for possible readers why this issue cannot be missed into a quick elevator pitch, what would you tell them?

Ed Brisson: This issue brings us to a moment we’ve been building to since IRON FIST #1. Iron Fist may have his chi back, but it’s possible he’s lost everything else in the process.

Read More

Get ready to defend!

The Guardians flew back down, Spidey swung through again, and now the Defenders of Hell’s Kitchen return to Avengers Academy to battle a new threat in their neighborhood. Kingpin’s been imprisoned for nearly a year, and in that time Madame Gao stepped in to fill the power vacuum left in the criminal underworld of Hell’s Kitchen. The Defenders and the rest of the Academy students – with the help of a few new friends – need to dispatch Madame Gao and take back the neighborhood once more.

We grabbed a few minutes with Allen Warner, Lead Narrative Designer at TinyCo, to see what The Hand has in store for us at the “Marvel Avengers Academy”.

Marvel.com: The Defenders are making their way back to Avengers Academy! What’s bringing the team to campus once more?

Allen Warner: With the Kingpin imprisoned, Madame Gao has seized control of the Hand, and conquered Hell’s Kitchen.  The Defenders held her off as long as they could, but she countered by kidnapping some of their closest friends and allies, forcing them to regroup and call in reinforcements.  With a firm hold on Hell’s Kitchen, and the combined resources of both the Hand and Kingpin’s entire operation, Madame Gao sets her sights on retrieving a powerful artifact that Director Fury has locked away in one of his secret vaults, launching a full-scale assault on Avengers Academy.

Marvel.com: Will players be returning to Hell’s Kitchen with the new event district?

Allen Warner: Yes, we’ll be revisiting Hell’s Kitchen and all of its iconic locales like Alias Investigations, Josie’s, and the law offices of Nelson and Murdock.  We’ll also be bringing back the Academy Courthouse from our Daredevil event, and giving some new recruits fun courtroom animations.

Marvel.com: How will the Avengers battle Madame Gao and her Hand minions?

Allen Warner: The Defenders and Avengers will team up to battle Madame Gao and her special henchmen on campus, as well as traveling away from the school to stop the Hand ninjas from attempting to take over the world.

Marvel.com: As with the Guardians and Spidey events before this, will players once again be able to recruit Defenders heroes from the previous event?

Allen Warner: Yes, this is a similar structure where players will be given another opportunity to get characters from the original Daredevil event, as well as some other characters who weren’t part of that event, but make sense to be involved with the Defenders.  Players will have a chance to get Iron Fist, Daredevil, Hellcat, Elektra, Misty Knight, Punisher, Luke Cage, and Jessica Jones.  They may also have an opportunity to get some characters who you wouldn’t associate with the Defenders TV show, but who have been part of various Defenders teams in the comics.  We’ll also be resurfacing all of the outfits from the Daredevil event, including what might be my personal favorite Avengers Academy outfit of all time, Lawyer Loki.  We learned in the original Daredevil event that Loki has a gift for lawyering, and a fondness for lawyers and the profession, and that will continue in this event with some fun results.

Marvel.com: While those who missed out will be excited to try for all those returning favorites, what new faces join the mix?

Allen Warner: A cool and diverse group of characters who are often thought of as supporting players, but who will take center stage and show their heroic sides during this event: Foggy Nelson, Colleen Wing, Stick, and Claire Temple.  They each bring a really unique and fresh perspective to not only the events at hand, but the Avengers heroes and Avengers Academy traditions.  Our awesome art team did some really great and brand-new things with their various visual levels, and their animations are really fun, and play to their unique occupations, personalities, and talents.  I’m really excited about this group from a narrative perspective because there is so much unexplored territory.  These characters typically only interact with the characters in their respective spheres, so there’s a ton of opportunity to do things that no one has ever seen before.  Foggy will form relationships and go on adventures with Loki and Captain America.  Claire Temple will go on an intergalactic rescue mission with Cosmo the Spacedog.  Stick will butt heads with J. Jonah Jameson.  Madame Gao will match wits with Mephisto, and so on.  One of my favorite things about the world we’ve built in this game is having the opportunity to reimagine and expand upon existing characters and Marvel lore, and this event and this group of recruits provided an awesome opportunity to do a lot of things that have never been done before.

Marvel.com: What new ways will our heroes suit up to dispatch the Hand threat?

Allen Warner: In addition to the resurfaced outfits from the previous Daredevil event, there will be new outfits and stories for Hulk, Punisher, Elektra, Iron Fist, and Misty Knight.  We love coming up with new looks for our characters that are unique to the world of Avengers Academy, but we decided to take a different approach this time around and only include outfits that have appeared in the comics.  Some are very recent looks that fans may not even be aware of, while others are iconic looks that have been around for decades.  They all look incredible, are completely different from the characters’ usual outfits, and add a new angle to their personalities and powers that make for some really fun animations and stories.

Marvel.com: As excited as we are to dive back into Hell’s Kitchen and dispatch Madame Gao, there’s always one eye on the horizon. Can you tease anything coming down the line for the Academy and its heroes?

Allen Warner: One of our frequently teased schools will finally have to come out of hiding, and they’ll be bringing more recruitable characters with them than ever before.

For all the latest on “Marvel Avengers Academy,” stay tuned to Marvel.com and @MarvelGames on Twitter!

Read More

With Miles Morales held by Hydra, check out these other heroes who have spent time behind bars.

Not every hero in the Marvel Universe stays on the right side of the law. Sometimes they go one step too far—and other times, the law works actively against them. Take Miles Morales for instance: the SPIDER-MAN star fought against the vision Ulysses gave him back in CIVIL WAR II and surrendered himself to Hydra instead of killing Captain America.

Surely the former denizen of the Ultimate Universe will find his way out of the clink—but until then, he can take solace in the fact that a few of his fellow heroes have had their own stints under lock and key.

CAPTAIN AMERICA

Look at that, even the honorable Steve Rogers spent time in the pen! More than once, too! Most notably, Cap was locked up between his surrender in the last issue of CIVIL WAR and his apparent death in CAPTAIN AMERICA #25.

LUKE CAGE

Carl Lucas might have become a hero without heading to jail, but he probably wouldn’t be super strong and possess his signature impervious skin. Wrongfully accused in a drug bust and sentenced to the big house, the future Avenger agreed to participate in an experiment that gave him super abilities. After his transformation, he escaped from captivity and resumed life under the name we all know him by today.

PUNISHER

Over the years, many people have wanted to lock Frank Castle up—but no one seems capable of actually keeping him imprisoned. During the mid-‘90s, the authorities tried to send him to the electric chair—and failed. And during the most recent PUNISHER WAR ZONE, he sat in an underwater prison, but of course no walls—not even ones surrounded by water—could stop The Punisher.

DAREDEVIL

At the end of Brian Michael Bendis’ epic run on DAREDEVIL, he left ol’ Matt Murdock in quite a pickle—inside a jail cell where new series writer Ed Brubaker kept the blind lawyer incarcerated for a while. Murdock eventually got out when none other than master escape artist Frank Castle was purposefully captured as part of a jailbreak plan.

SONGBIRD

Since their inception, the Thunderbolts revolved around characters who served time in one way or another. The original squad, including Songbird, was assembled by Baron Zemo and consisted of villains masquerading as heroes. After her stint in jail, the former Screaming Mimi took to the lawful side of things—and even served as a warden on the maximum security prison known as the Raft!

IRON FIST

During CIVIL WAR, nearly every hero who sided against Tony Stark’s Superhuman Registration Act wound up incarcerated—including Iron Fist. While posing as Daredevil in an attempt to keep Hell’s Kitchen safe, Danny Rand was captured as a means to help Captain America and the other anti-registration heroes to the Negative Zone prison for a jailbreak!

WOLVERINE

Not at all unfamiliar with jail cells, Wolverine found himself imprisoned in the pages of LOGAN. Captured by the Japanese during World War II, the mutant was kept in Nagasaki before he escaped and fell in love with a local woman named Atsuko. When Atsuko was murdered, Logan followed her killer to Hiroshima, where they were caught in the atomic bombing of the city. Wolverine survived the blast, but was left scarred by the loss of his former love.

BUCKY BARNES

Even though he stepped up and filled in for Steve Rogers after the original Cap died, Bucky Barnes still stood trial for his crimes as his previous identity, the Winter Soldier. Declared innocent in the United States, Russia judged him differently—and locked him up on heightened charges. Thanks to help from someone familiar with Russian prisons—Black Widow—Bucky escaped and headed back to the U.S., where he then decided that his days holding the mantle of Captain America were over.

PETER PARKER

Miles Morales doesn’t lay claim as the only Spider-Man to wind up incarcerated—back in AMAZING SPIDER-MAN #219, Peter Parker attempted to sneak into a jail as part of an exposé, but instead got caught and tossed in a cell! After Matt Murdock helped him get out of the predicament, Pete managed to publish his exposé—and apprehend a few escaped inmates in the process.

Go behind bars with SPIDER-MAN #20, by writer Brian Michael Bendis and artist Oscar Bazaldua, available September 6!

 

Read More

Danny Rand teams up with the Master of Kung Fu, Shang-Chi!

In the immortal words of Carl Douglas, “Everybody was kung fu fighting … In fact, it was a little bit frightening.” These lyrics pretty much sum up the forthcoming two-issue arc in Ed Brisson, Mike Perkins and Andy Troy’s IRON FIST when Danny Rand teams up with Shang-Chi, the Master of Kung Fu in Issue #6 (out Aug. 2).

Together, they’re taking on a deadly cult never before seen in Marvel comics in a story that Brisson promises is equal parts martial arts and horror. Read on to see our full interview with Ed as he describes what it was like to pair up two of the most iconic living weapons in the Marvel Universe.

Marvel.com: So tell us a little about this “murder cult” trying to kill Danny and how Shang-Chi is here to help?

Ed Brisson: Without getting into spoiler territory…After the events of The Trial of Seven Masters, Danny is just trying to get home. He’s learned more about himself and knows what he needs to do, where he needs to go. However, it seems some people don’t want him to make it home. Some people would rather see him dead. The “murder cult”, known as The Lineage of the One True Light is not a group we’ve seen in the Marvel U before. Mike Perkins and I had a lot of fun creating the look for The Lineage and their leader. I’m hoping that people will be sufficiently creeped out by them. Shang-Chi gets a tip-off on the hit and comes in to help Danny. The why of it all, you’re going to have to read to find out.

Marvel.com: What kind of dynamic can we expect between these two characters? How does Danny feel about this team-up, especially one with the son of an internationally infamous criminal mastermind?

Ed Brisson: These two are supposed to be the top kung-fu masters in the Marvel U and I think that there’s a mutual respect between them, however, we wanted to play off that a little. We’ve got them competing a little, even if it’s low key and not at the forefront. There are comments here and there that let you know that they’re both aware that the other is perhaps trying to outperform the other. As to Shang-Chi’s dad being an infamous criminal mastermind, it’s not something that is addressed. Danny knows that everyone’s got their own issues. Hell, Danny’s own father tried to kill him in Iron Fist: Living Weapon, so he’s not one to start criticizing some else’s parents.

Marvel.com: Does Danny feel insecure about his own fighting abilities in the presence of the so-called “Master of Kung Fu”? 

Ed Brisson: I don’t know if Danny feels insecure around Shang-Chi, but he certainly has a tendency towards trying to impress those around him. And that need is going to be turned up to eleven when he’s around someone who carries the title of “Master of Kung Fu”. Even though they’re working together, any competing that they do through the two-issue arc is almost guaranteed to be initiated by Danny. However, their skills will be tested in ways that neither anticipates. I think readers are really going to dig it.

Marvel.com: Using that as springboard, how do their fighting styles differ with Danny being trained in the mystical K’un-Lun and Shang-Chi in mainland China? 

Ed Brisson: Historically, Danny’s focus has been almost strictly hand-to-hand combat, where Shang-Chi has training in both hand-to-hand and in using weaponry. Iron Fist can sometimes be impulsive, where Shang-Chi is more disciplined and focused.

Marvel.com: Looking at Jeff Dekal’s cover art, I get an old school ‘70s Kung Fu movie/poorly dubbed action vibe. Did films like Bruce Lee’s Enter The Dragon influence this issue/new story arc? If so, how will we see it manifested on the page? 

Ed Brisson: His covers are amazing, aren’t they? Had the pleasure of meeting Jeff at HeroesCon a couple of weeks ago and picking up an original Iron Fist drawing. That dude is crazy talented and super nice. This one is a weird one, to be honest. The first arc was heavily influenced by my love of kung fu flicks, but this second arc is less so. This one is more of a kung fu/horror mash-up. It’s a very moody and atmospheric action piece with some pretty high stakes for our heroes. Mike Perkins and Andy Troy have done an incredible job of creating an unsettling vibe for the book. It’s a little off-kilter for what most might expect from an IRON FIST book, but I think that people are going to be pleasantly surprised.

Marvel.com: Are there any other characters in the IRON FIST mythos that are in the wings or ones you’d like to write for in future issues?

Ed Brisson: There are a couple who’re set to appear in an upcoming arc, but I don’t want to spoil anything. But, honestly, there are very few characters from Iron Fist’s past that I don’t want to bring into the series. I feel he’s got a rich gallery of villains — everyone from Razorfist to Davos — and a compelling list of supporters and friends — from Luke Cage to Colleen Wing to The Immortal Weapons. This list is as long as my arm. There are some deep cut baddies that I’ve been pitching for upcoming arcs that we’ll hopefully get to see. More immediately, though, people may have noticed Sabretooth on the cover of the first issue in the LEGACY arc. Sabretooth made his first appearance in IRON FIST #14 and the two have clashed several times since and it looks like they’re both still holding a grudge.

Read More

Danny Rand’s island adventure comes to a brutal end!

While July 4 usually marks the height of fireworks in the United States, IRON FIST #5 will have plenty more ready for you the next day.

Danny Rand, tired but resilient, will complete his violent journey to the top of the Liu-Shi fighting tournament and finally come face to face with the shadowy final opponent who has been watching him from afar all this time. While we wouldn’t dare spoil the results, we can promise the clash will be explosive.

Writer Ed Brisson gladly took a break from cleaning all the blood off of his clothes to talk to us about the end of the Immortal Weapon’s latest martial arts contest.

Marvel.com: At the start of IRON FIST, Danny found himself losing his chi. As he pulls into this final fight, he has been awarded the chi of his fallen opponents. How has that affected his abilities? His state of mind?

Ed Brisson: At first, I think it came as a bit of relief to him. He’s finally able to tap back into his power; however, as we learn through the series, it’s fleeting. The chi he absorbs is not the same and doesn’t last, so, in a lot of ways, he’s back to square one. He’s still trying to find out why he has trouble connecting with his chi. Until he knows why, he has no idea how to fix it.

He came to Liu-Shi looking for answers and while he may find some, he’s discovered new questions that he’ll need to answer.

Marvel.com: The final opponent has made an effort to keep him or herself largely in the shadows. Without spoiling anything, what can you tell us about this mysterious foe?

Ed Brisson: Oh man…I want to, but that’s one of those things that I think is better left for the reader to discover. Let’s just say that this fight is a fight that’s been in the making since the 70s.

Marvel.com: How did Mike Perkins’ art help you realize the tone and look of the final boss? How did his depiction of the character inform your writing of him and of the fight?

Ed Brisson: Going in, we had a very clear idea of who the final boss was; there’s an existing history to him that we’re building upon. Design wise, Mike came up with an incredible look for him. Something classic that doesn’t look dated. I can’t get too deep into it without risk of spoiling things, but will say that Mike nailed the design. Which is no surprise, Mike has designed some incredible characters for this series.

Iron Fist #5 cover by Jeff Dekal

In terms of Mike’s fights and choreography—after seeing the very first fight scene in issue #2, I stopped scripting fight scenes for Mike. When we get to a fight page, I’ll usually give a bare-bones run down of what happens and leave the rest to Mike. Normally, I don’t write that way, but have found that with Mike, the best thing to do is get out of his way and let him work his magic. That’s how you end up with some pages that have 22 panels of the most killer fighting you’ve ever seen in a comic.

Marvel.com: It has been clear since issue #2 that the houses of the island have no intention of playing fair with Iron Fist. Now that he stands one antagonist away from total victory, how dangerous are the schools to him even though he’s defeated their champions?

Ed Brisson: Although the island operates under one governing council, each house/school has a very distinct personality and will react to the loss in their own way. Some of the houses will accept the loss gracefully. Others, not as much. And some…well, some will not accept loss at any cost.

The long term of this is that we’re going to see Danny making pathways with new allies, while also adding a whole slew of enemies to his already bursting fight dance card.

Even though Danny may soon be done with the Liu-Shi, that doesn’t mean that Liu-Shi is done with him.

Marvel.com: In considering this last issue of your first arc on the title, what would you tell fans who think they might want to pick it up but aren’t sure? What makes this issue an important get for fans of Iron Fist?

Ed Brisson: Anyone who’s a fan of kung fu flicks should pick up the series. We’re leaning hard into that old Shaw Bros feel and I think that a lot of people have been pretty happy with it. We’re really doing our best to honor Iron Fist’s roots by telling a tale that feels classic, but also contemporary all at once.

Marvel.com: In looking beyond #5, can you tease any elements or stories that may await Danny if he can survive this last fight?

Ed Brisson: In issues #6 and #7, Danny is just trying to get back home. There’ll be some unfinished business and the tournament will have some lasting repercussions that Danny is going to have to deal with for the foreseeable future. But, in the meantime, he’s trying to get back home and…well, some folks are trying to stop him from doing even that. We’ll meet some new baddies, which I’m pretty excited about. But, I think readers will be happy to see Shang-Chi, Marvel’s other Kung Fu Master, popping up to help Danny fight against this new threat.

Catch the thrilling conclusion to the first arc of IRON FIST by Ed Brisson and Mike Perkins with July 5’s issue #5!

Read More

Danny Rand finds himself trapped between two deadly opponents!

Danny Rand, aka Iron Fist, struggled against The Eel of the Blessed Waters on the beaches of Liu-Shi but nonetheless proved successful this week in IRON FIST #2. In issue #3, due in stores on May 3, the Immortal Weapon takes on both The Rat of 12 Plagues and The Resourceful Snake and the results may not be as pretty for the erstwhile hero.

Writer Ed Brisson took a break from watching the Vegas odds on the Labor in Liu-Shi to help us handicap the upcoming bouts.

Marvel.com: As we see briefly at the end of IRON FIST #2, The Rat of 12 Plagues is a creepy looking opponent. Can you take us through how you and series artist Mike Perkins collaborated on his look? Where did the inspiration for the character come from for you in the first place?

Ed Brisson: I always wanted The Rat of 12 Plagues to be, as his name would indicate, a terrifying opponent. Initially, I’d had an idea of the type of place The Rat would live and the personality spun out of that. I’d originally had him as someone who’d lived like a rat, in sewers, but as I went to script, it made more sense that he’d lived his life out in a ghost village. A child who was the sole survivor of a massacre, who had to find a way to survive amongst the dead.

Mike’s the one who really made the character come to life though. I gave him only brief notes on each of the seven and Mike just went to town. The look for Rat of 12 Plagues is 100% Perkins.

Marvel.com: For Danny, what makes The Rat a uniquely dangerous opponent?

Ed Brisson: He’s so deadly because he’s both a Kung Fu master and a living plague. With one touch of his claws, he can infect an opponent with sickness like they’ve never experienced before. Other than his sifu, none have encountered The Rat of 12 Plagues and lived to talk about it.

Marvel.com: What is one feature of Rat that you find particularly exciting or interesting as a writer?

Ed Brisson: He’s a survivor. He may be nasty and disease ridden, but he was left to fend for himself at a young age and managed to overcome the elements, famine and even disease. Not only did he survive disease, he conquered it and learned to use it as a weapon for his own survival. He absorbs the essence of others to feed himself, which makes him necessarily evil. And that sort of evil is a lot of fun to explore.

Iron Fist #3 cover by Jeff Dekal

Marvel.com: If Iron Fist can defeat Rat of 12 Plagues, next on the fight docket is The Resourceful Snake. As a character, what makes Snake stand out for you creatively?

Ed Brisson: The Resourceful Snake has a past that’s not entirely dissimilar to Danny’s. I can’t divulge too much here, for fear of spoiling, but these two would have a lot to talk about if they weren’t on a mission to beat each other’s heads in. The Resourceful Snake has a lot to prove and, as we’ll find out, Danny provides him with a bit of a second chance to right a past wrong.

Marvel.com: The cover of IRON FIST #3 appears to showcase The Resourceful Snake and reveals him to be a double amputee. Where in the creative process and how did he come together for you? What role did Perkins have in aiding you in the Resourceful Snake’s creation?

Ed Brisson: Again, this one is a little tough to get into without spoiling. The Resourceful Snake is missing both arms. That initially started off as a bit of a nod to the One-Armed Swordsman films. We just took it one arm further, I guess. The Resourceful Snake is a powerful combatant with a long history as a skilled combatant.

We do learn how he lost his arms and that, not surprisingly, will play a role in why he’s eager to fight Iron Fist.

When we were putting together, the notes I gave Mike on The Resourceful Snake were not much more than: He’s a fighter who lost both arms in combat, but that has not stopped him. He’s adapted [and] refined his style and can now beat any four-limbed opponent he faces. In my description, I believe he was angry, but Mike came back with a more jovial looking character and I think that works much better, so I made sure to write him as such when the time came.

Marvel.com: As Danny Rand continues on his quest to win the whole tournament and hopefully reset his own chi, how is his understanding of the stakes evolving, if at all, in issue #3? Does he have an inkling that something more complex is going on than he was initially led to believe?

Ed Brisson: Absolutely. There’s something going on beneath the surface here. Danny quickly becomes ensnared in a conspiracy and learns that the odds are stacked against him winning. And, even if he does win, there’s no guarantee that he’s ever getting off this island.

The next round kicks off in IRON FIST #3 by Ed Brisson and Mike Perkins on May 3!

Read More

Danny Rand journeys from the mystic village of K'un Lun to Netflix!

Every Friday we use the powers of Marvel Unlimited to look back at the very first appearance of a major character, place or object that made waves this week.

Considering Danny Rand not only just debuted his own Netflix series, but also starred in a new comic by Ed Brisson and Mike Perkins, it couldn’t be a better time to take a glance back at his debut in the pages of MARVEL PREMIERE #15.

The issue, which dropped in 1974, came from the minds of Roy Thomas and Gil Kane. It opened with Iron Fist taking on a quartet of trained attackers for an audience that included Yu-Ti – otherwise known as the August Personage of Jade – and the four hooded Dragon Kings.

Having defeated his opponents, Iron Fist looked up to Yu-Ti asking about The Challenge of the One when the elder asked him to think back on his past. This filled in the reader about a 9-year-old boy who scaled a mountain with his parents Wendell and Heather as well as his dad’s business partner a decade prior in search of K’un Lun.

That journey ended for his father, when Meacham, the business partner, took advantage of a minor accident to distract them from his true intent: murdering Danny’s dad. Remembering the focus he and his mother had in trying to climb down to safety, Iron Fist used that in his battle with the silent, deadly and huge Shu-Hu.

Danny failed to gain the upper hand with this challenge and soon found himself being battered around. In an effort to regain his focus, he dug even deeper into the memory of surviving with his mother in the unforgiving mountains, hiding in caves and avoiding wolves. While the hungry pack chased them, Danny and his mother saw the bridge to K’un Lun, but Heather didn’t think they’d make it so she thrust her son ahead and then ran back, offering herself to their pursuers.

The memory of his mother’s bravery spurred Danny on to battle his enemy more fiercely than before, actually spilling over into a berserker rage. Fully back in the fight, he won the match upon funneling his will to his fist which “becomes like unto a thing of iron!” Of course, this would be just the first of many fights we’d see Iron Fist take on as he’d travel through the Marvel Universe joining groups like the Heroes for Hire, New Avengers and even The Defenders.

During his run on PREMIERE, which went until #25, other luminaries like Larry Hama, Chris Claremont, Len Wein and John Byrne worked on the character. Danny then starred in his own ongoing series for 15 issues though the final story carried over to MARVEL TEAM-UP #63-64.

And then true comic book magic happened when the powers that be teamed Rand with Luke Cage in POWER MAN & IRON FIST, a partnership that continues to give readers a thrill to this day. In fact, a series of that same name can be found on shelves right now even as the new IRON FIST series kicks off.

Flash Forward

In the pages of IMMORTAL IRON FIST, Ed Brubaker, Matt Fraction, David Aja and others expanded upon the mythology of Iron Fist. They not only chronicled the adventures of other, previous bearers of the name, but also expanded on the idea of K’un Lun as one of many mystical cities with their own warriors. Readers met the likes of Fat Cobra, Dog Brother #1, Bride of Nine Spiders, Prince of Orphans, Tiger’s Beautiful Daughter and Steel Phoenix.

Read More

The Immortal Weapon of K’un-Lun dons his Netflix attire!

Celebrating Danny Rand’s big jump to Netflix, “Marvel Puzzle Quest” unleashes a new 4-Star Iron Fist, bringing some seriously powerful martial arts abilities to bear.

We talked to D3 Go! Senior Producer Josh Austin about the Hero for Hire’s upgrades and the best ways to dish out righteous kung fu fury to the bad guys. Read on for the breakdown!

Marvel.com: In my humble opinion Iron Fist (Immortal Weapon) is one of the best 3-Star characters in the game. His Black AP generation is top notch and Iron Fist of K’un-Lun hits like a truck for cheap. What does this Danny Rand do differently?

Josh Austin: 3-Star Iron Fist definitely is one of the best characters in 3-Star land! This 4-Star Iron Fist (Danny Rand) is also powerful after you build up his chi, which in the game, translates to strike tiles that his abilities can generate. Basically the new Iron Fist’s abilities were designed to chain into each other—kind of like 2-Star and 3-Star Thor—so the player can gain AP.

Marvel.com: I noticed that just like 4-Star Luke Cage (Power Man), who has a unique interaction with Iron Fist, this 4-Star Iron Fist has a special interaction with Luke. How do the designers decide who gets these unique interaction? They’re fairly rare in “MPQ.”

Josh Austin: Iron Fist (Danny Rand) and Luke Cage have a history together with their Heroes for Hire partnership in the comic world, where they take assignments. A lot of characters have a synergy together in “Marvel Puzzle Quest” that’s not as apparent, but both Luke Cage and Iron Fist have been designed to work together and their power lists this out. This new Iron Fist (Danny Rand) brings either Luke Cage 3-Star or 4-Star—depending on which variant you have on your team—into the animation when using Danny’s second power and Luke Cage is on the team, which is a fun reinforcement of the upgrades the power contains.

Marvel.com: Care to tell our readers all about Danny’s kung fu? No doubt he’ll make the Thunderer proud.

Josh Austin: Iron Fist (Danny Rand)’s first power is called Chi Focus and costs six Blue AP. For this power, Danny concentrates his energy to augment his physical power. What that means in the game is this power creates a Purple Strike tile. Then, if there are any additional friendly Strike tiles on the board, it Fortifies them and the team gains Green AP.

Danny’s second power is called Crowd Control for eight Green AP. Danny rushes into the fray, making quick work of his enemies. This power deals damage, then if there is more than one enemy remaining, the team gains two Black AP. Otherwise, he deals extra damage.

Danny’s third power is called Like Unto Iron and costs 12 Black AP. Danny channels all his chi into his fist to deliver a devastating punch. It converts up to two friendly Protect tiles to Strike tiles, then deals damage.

Marvel.com: Like Unto Iron packs a seriously painful punch! And just to confirm I read that right, Danny changes Protect tiles to Strike tiles before he does direct damage? So he’ll get the added power of the Strike tiles behind his fists?

Josh Austin: That is correct for Like Unto Iron; the fist attack animation plays, then if the player has a Protect tile it converts to a Strike tile, and the enemy receives the more devastating hit.

Marvel.com: When we’re thinking about teammates, obviously Luke Cage enters the equation, but who else? Who makes Strike tiles quickly so Iron Fist can get right to fortifying them? And Sam Wilson, Falcon or Captain America, would make sure that there are plenty of Protect tiles to turn.

Josh Austin: Here are a couple examples of team-ups [that came up] during development! One team-up to make Iron Fist (Danny Rand) a strong damage dealer is to have Luke Cage (Power Man) and Wasp (Janet Van Dyne). Wasp works well as a means of strengthening whatever tiles Luke Cage and Iron Fist pump out. Luke Cage will be throwing down strong Protect tiles whenever an enemy activates a power and he will also slowly remove enemy special tiles with his Defender power.

Another option is to have Moon Knight and Medusa to put Iron Fist (Danny Rand) into a battery role. Using Iron Fist (Danny Rand)’s AP generation for Moon Knight to soak up and activate Moonsilver Blades and Fist of Khonshu while Medusa generates health and additional Green AP from matching any special tiles.

Marvel.com: And how are you building his covers? Honestly I feel like all of his abilities are worth having five points in them, but I’m thinking I would roll 3/5/5 making sure he’s capable of doing as much damage as possible. What do you think?

Josh Austin: That breakdown definitely makes sense. Definitely the Crowd Control fueling Like Unto Iron is a dependable way to generate AP since the cost of Crowd Control and the relatively easy condition of having more than one enemy remaining makes Crowd Control his go to Power.

Marvel.com: And when do we get to unleash the power of Shou-Lao the Undying on our foes?

Josh Austin: Iron Fist (Danny Rand) will be available this Thursday, March 23 and can be found in Venom Bomb that runs Thursday, March 23 through Tuesday, March 28. He will also be in the Juggernaut: Heroic Vault from Monday, March 27 through Friday, March 31. His versus tournament will be Last Defender and it starts March 30th and lasts until April 3.

Also, I wanted to mention that we’re running a 30% bonus currency sale right now through March 27 to celebrate Puzzle Quest’s 10th Anniversary. Players can use this currency boost to recruit or level up Iron Fist (Danny Rand)! Finally, we’re working with Marvel Insider on some upcoming promotions, so please stay tuned!

Pick up the all-new Iron Fist here and stay tuned to Marvel.com for more “Marvel Puzzle Quest” news and interviews.

Read More

Bring the action from the small screen to your gaming experience!

Last week, we introduced you to the various versions of Iron Fist across the world of Marvel Games. Today, as “Marvel’s Iron Fist” hits Netflix, we take a look at how this new iteration of the character has inspired additions to several of those games.

Suit up as this new Iron Fist and battle the villainous Hand ninjas!

Iron Fist in Marvel Puzzle Quest

MARVEL PUZZLE QUEST
“Iron Fist (Danny Rand) has been designed to utilize his ability to knock out characters in style. Each power builds up like the character’s chi to unleash more damage later in the match and he even has a power that deals more damage when there is only one more enemy left, allowing the player to finish off their prey with a devastating punch!” – Josh Austin, Senior Producer on “Marvel Puzzle Quest” at D3 Go!

Iron Fist in Marvel Heroes 2016

MARVEL HEROES 2016
“A master of mystical martial arts, Iron Fist lives up to the title ‘Immortal Weapon of K’un-L’un’ and channels his chi to achieve states of near invulnerability while pummeling foes with a flurry of unrelenting attacks. There’s never been a better time to revisit this fan favorite Hero and we can’t wait to see what’s in store for Danny Rand in the [show] on Netflix!” – Ben Gilbert, Lead Game Designer on “Marvel Heroes 2016” at Gazillion Entertainment

Iron Fist and friends in Marvel Future Fight

MARVEL FUTURE FIGHT
“Our top priority [in this week’s update] was the release of the new ‘Iron First’ show. Like we did when ‘Daredevil’ was first released, we wanted to be able to bring the excitement from the TV show into the game. It’s appealing even for us as the developers to bring the skills from the show into the game. To go along with this, we have introduced a Marvel TV related uniform bundle.” – Minkyun Kim, Dev Director on “Marvel Future Fight” at Netmarble

Catch the adventures of Danny Rand in “Marvel’s Iron Fist” out now on Netflix!

Read More

The Immortal Weapon cuts loose across the world of Marvel Games!

With over 75 years of rich history, the Marvel Universe has produced countless memorable heroes and villains. On a regular basis, Marvel Games Presents will highlight these characters’ histories as well as shine a spotlight on their current gaming appearances.

Today, the spotlight falls on the upcoming star of his own Netflix series, Danny Rand, aka Iron Fist!

MEET IRON FIST
Betrayed by his business partner, Wendell Rand and his wife Heather lost their lives while searching for the mystical city of K’un-L’un, orphaning their son Danny in the process. The denizens of K’un-L’un would take the boy in and train him in the martial arts; upon adulthood, he passed the trials to become the city’s representative as an Immortal Weapon: Iron Fist! Returning to New York, Iron Fist became a super hero and partnered with Luke Cage as the Heroes for Hire.

MARVEL AVENGERS ACADEMY
“How can you not love a hero who got his powers by punching an undying dragon in the heart?! For my money, he and Luke Cage are the coolest duo in all of Marvel, and his relationship with Misty Knight is one of the most important in comics history. In the world of ‘Marvel Avengers Academy’, he’s still figuring out how to use his nunchucks, but he’s already an expert in everything ‘chill.’ He’s the type of hero you want by your side whether you’re just hanging out at home or fighting for your life in an extra-dimensional Kung Fu tournament. Did I mention he punched a train and a Helicarrier?!”- Allen Warner, Lead Narrative Designer on “Marvel Avengers Academy”

MARVEL CONTEST OF CHAMPIONS
“Iron Fist was part of the original roster of ‘Contest of Champions,’ and a natural fit for a fighting game like ours. He represents a very interesting time when the west became fascinated by Asian culture, and this east/west dichotomy is pure Marvel gold: he’s a very skilled warrior, but a pacifist. An industrialist, but also a very simple man, raised as a monk. We love Danny Rand, and can’t wait for the [‘Marvel’s Iron Fist’] Netflix show!” – Gabe Frizzera, Art Director on “Marvel Contest of Champions”

MARVEL FUTURE FIGHT
“Iron Fist gathers ki in his body not only to defend, but also to heal. To really bring out this aspect, we designed him to become invincible when his HP is low and recover a small amount of HP. The most unique and appealing aspect of Iron Fist is that he is able to attack by summoning Shou-Lao in an energy form. The moment this skill is activated, Shou-Lao envelops Iron Fist and deals powerful damage to enemies around him. Not only will you be able to marvel at the amazing graphic effects, but you’ll be able to see Iron Fist’s unique trait.” – Minkyun Kim, Dev Director on “Marvel Future Fight”

 

MARVEL HEROES 2016
“Iron Fist offers full immersion in the mystical martial arts of K’un-L’un. Danny Rand uses flying kicks, lightning-fast punches, and explosions of mystical energy to defend the innocent. Channel your chi into the ancient fighting forms, masterfully blending them into an alloy Like Unto Iron.” – Ben Gilbert, Lead Game Designer on “Marvel Heroes 2016”

MARVEL PUZZLE QUEST
“Iron Fist (Immortal Weapon) is the complete package in ‘Marvel Puzzle Quest.’ He’s able to take on an onslaught of opponents either with mind or muscle. He is truly a living weapon–one of the best characters in his tier–that opposing enemies need to watch out for in either our Versus Tournament or Story Events.” – Josh Austin, D3 Go! Producer on “Marvel Puzzle Quest”


MORE IRON FIST

Follow Danny Rand into the pages of IRON FIST #1, coming March 22!

Read More