Marvel Team-Up #63-64
Issue(s): Marvel Team-Up #63, Marvel Team-Up #64, Marvel Tales #198
It turns out he is the son of Lei Kung the Thunderer, and he competed against Danny's father for the title of Iron Fist but failed. He even attempted to face the dragon Shou-Lao the Undying, which explains his partial chest branding, but failed to defeat it.
Iron Fist is defeated in his first match against the Serpent, and he loses, with the Serpent stealing his power and Misty rescuing him from being killed. In the next issue, which is nominally a team-up between Spider-Man and the Daughters of the Dragon, Iron Fist defeats the Serpent in the rematch as the Serpent literally burns himself out trying to use the power of the Iron Fist.
Lei Kung and Yu-Ti observe all of this from K'un-Lun.
Not sure exactly why this would be, but there's some fairly clunky dialogue and plotting in these issues. First of all, Misty blows her assignment as an undercover agent in the Bushmaster's organization in order to go and rescue Danny, thanks to her overhearing a very expository phone call between the Bushmaster and his agent. ("You say this hero will be taken care of tonight? Excellent! And there's no possibility of anything going wrong? I see...").
Considering the effort, danger, and humiliation (it is implied that she has been sleeping with the Bushmaster) she had to go through, it seems very out of character for her to blow her cover like that. Misty is a pretty level headed character; you'd think she'd just say "Danny can handle himself". This is setting aside the fact that the Bushmaster had absolutely nothing to do with the Serpent's attack; the only reason he's having that conversation is so that Misty can be brought into the plot.
Second, this is entirely an Iron Fist story. Spider-Man contributes actually nothing, and Misty and Colleen, supposedly the co-stars of the second issue, don't really get to do anything. Everyone gets a few obligatory hits in, of course; it's just that they're completely irrelevant to the plot, especially once they realize it's an "Iron Fist has to do this for himself" sort of a thing.
Spider-Man referring to Iron Fist "fighting that reject from Enter The Dragon", even though Iron Fist and the Steel Serpent are essentially wearing the exact same outfit, was another "Whuhuh?" moment for me.
Despite its contrivances, it's still a decent story, and John Byrne's art is always nice.
A back-up story by Sholly Fisch, James Fry, and Mark McKenna from the reprint in Marvel Tales #198 has Spider-Man getting into a fight with a mind-controlled Thing while the FF are on their way to fight the Puppet Master. The idea is that the Puppet Master wanted to get rid of the Thing for a while, so he sent him after someone he knew the Thing couldn't catch. It's cute.
Quality Rating: B-
Chronological Placement Considerations: I'm letting the Marvel Tales back-up take place right after the main story. Note that the FF decide to break up in Fantastic Four #188, which is prior to these issues. But the break-up isn't official until Fantastic Four #191, and they could certainly briefly reunite to stop the Puppet Master from messing with the Thing. Mr. Fantastic is not showing his powers.
Continuity Insert? N
My Reprint: Issue #64 is reprinted in Marvel Tales #198
Inbound References (3): showAugust Personage In Jade, Bushmaster, Colleen Wing, Human Torch, Invisible Woman, Iron Fist, Lei Kung the Thunderer, Misty Knight, Mr. Fantastic, Puppet Master, Spider-Man, Steel Serpent, Thing
I'm okay with Spidey not really doing much since I wanted Danny to solo his enemy, though his co-stars getting shafted wasn't so good. Still it'd have been a nice ending for Iron Fist since he beats the bad guy and gets the girl.
What I liked about Power Man and Iron Fist is it brought in a whole lot of old characters from Luke Cake and this.
And out of all the silly and odd names from Marvel Bushmaster is the only one that makes me chuckle. Not The Whizzer, Shocker, Stilt-Man, Man-Killer and many others.
Posted by: David Banes | January 13, 2014 3:27 AM
This really seems to be about tying off the plotlines that would have interfered with the upcoming fusion with power Man's book. i get the sense that Bushmaster and the "Maya Korday" subplot were intended to be a sow-build, something that would complicate the burgeoning relationship between Danny and Misty while establishing Bushmaster's villainous credentials. Likewise, I suspect we'd gave a seen a few issues of Iron Fist slowly losing his powers to Davos and struggling with them, as hinted by IF #15 and the opening pages of MTU #63. And, of course, the stuff with the Yu-Ti scheming against Danny is tied off rather abruptly here after a protracted setup in early Iron Fist issues.
By killing Davos and letting the Yu-Ti see Danny decide on an Earthly life, Claremont and Byrne are jettisoning the K'un-Lun stuff entirely to make for a better fit with Luke Cage's more grounded setup. It won't be until Mary Jo Duffy takes over the combined title that Danny's background will play a bigger role and elements like Master Kahn, the Hyl'Thri, and te Yu-Ti will be revisited. (In retrospect, it's rather odd that neither Duffy nor Busiek brought back the Steel Serpent.)
A few subplots are dropped entirely in the wrap-up: Iron Fist's slow discovery of his energy-absorbing talents never seem to come up again, and Colleen Wing coming to terms with the forced mind-meld IF used to save her and dealing with her father's lingering madness don't really play out in full.
Posted by: Omar Karindu | December 30, 2017 9:44 AM
Comments are now closed.
|SuperMegaMonkey home | Comics Chronology home|