[Potential MILD SPOILERS ahead.]
News broke only last week that Game of Thrones actor Finn Jones had been cast as Danny Rand, aka Iron Fist, the last (known) yet-to-be-cast lead hero of the Marvel Netflix series building up to the Defenders crossover. However, even then fans were already clamoring to know whether or not this meant the martial-arts hero would be turning up in season 2 of Daredevil or the upcoming season 1 of Luke Cage; after all, if these characters are meant to team-up, it feels like its about time more of them should actively cross paths outside of Cage (Mike Colter) and Jessica Jones (Kristen Ritter).
However, we may now have an answer: A new rumor suggests that Iron Fist will make his debut at the tail-end of Luke Cage.
The potential scoop comes from Heroic Hollywood rumor-monger Umberto "El Mayimbe" Gonzales, known as the go-to figure in the world of superhero movie newsbreaks. Speaking to the Collider Heroes Podcast about Iron Fist potentially showing up on Luke Cage season 1, he claimed:
"Yes he is. Episode 13. That’s why it was announced, or else it would have leaked … They shot him last week."
If this is correct, it sounds like fans should temper their expectations in terms of screen time, as 13 has thus far been the standard for total number of episodes in Marvel's Netflix seasons; implying that Iron Fist may only turn up at the very end of the story - possibly as not much more than a cameo to promote his own series. While bound to be disappointing to those looking for a more active team-up, it makes sense in terms of timing: If Jones has only just been cast, it likely means that a good deal of work in terms of design and further casting are still in flux for his series; to the extent that he might not even have a finalized costume yet. If so, Marvel would likely be in no hurry to establish too much about him visually this early on when it hasn't been thoroughly vetted through its own production.
Danny Rand first showing up on Luke Cage is, of course, not too surprising of a development: While he debuted in his own series in the 1970s as part of Marvel's effort to capitalize on the booming popularity of the martial-arts genre, Iron Fist's sales had slowed toward the end of the decade. His series was thus combined with that of the (then) similarly-troubled Luke Cage (by that point calling himself "Power Man,") with Power Man & Iron Fist running as a generally successful team book for a respectable 75 issues into the mid 1980s. Featuring stories by Jo Duffy, Chris Claremont, Jim "Priest" Owsley and a young Kurt Busiek, the series eventually ended in issue #125 - with the death of Danny Rand (he got better.) In that run, Cage and Iron Fist act as a duo carrying out missions on behalf on wealthy defense attorney Jeryn Hogarth, whose gender-flipped Cinematic Universe equivalent Jerri ( Carrie-Anne Moss) played a key role in Jessica Jones season 1 and has already proven eager to hire superhero muscle.
Created by Roy Thomas and Gil Kane, Danny Rand is the wealthy son of a prominent New York businessman who tragically loses his parents when the family is betrayed by a trusted friend during a trek to seek out the mythical lost city of K'un-L'un in the Himalayas. Discovering the city on his own, Rand is taking in by the wise mystics who protect the city and learns an ancient, supernaturally-heightened form of kung-fu; which he then uses to exact vengeance for his family and embark on a superhero career in the guise of Iron Fist. In the comics, K'un-L'un is home to a portal between dimensions, and is widely believed to have been the source of the mysterious Eastern goings-on hinted at by various Japanese and Chinese characters appearing in the first season of Daredevil.
Daredevil season 1 and Jessica Jones season 1 are now available on Netflix. Daredevil season 2 will debut on Netflix on March 18th, 2016, followed by Luke Cage season 1 later in 2016. Release dates for Jessica Jones season 2, Iron Fist, and The Defenders on Netflix have not yet been announced.
Source: Collider Heroes