Daniel Rand is the rich multi-millionaire head of the Rand corporation. He is also the Immortal Iron Fist, a master of Kung Fu, and defender of the ancient city of K'un L'un.Originally a MarvelBronze Age character, he was first created to cash in on the popularity of Kung Fu films. Iron Fist first appeared in "Marvel Premiere" #15 (May, 1974), created by Roy Thomas and Gil Kane. He appeared as the lead in this magazine until issue #25 (October, 1975). Then was granted his first eponymous series "Iron Fist", which lasted for 15 issues (November, 1975-September, 1977). Since then he's worked alongside Luke Cage as one of the Heroes for Hire, had an important role during the Marvel Civil War, and even joined the New Avengers. Despite this, he's never really risen beyond B-list status.The character got a new lease on life with the launch of The Immortal Iron Fist, co-written by Matt Fraction and Ed Brubaker (and after their departure, Duane Swierczynski). The series reveals that there have been many Iron Fists before Daniel, and introduces a 'new' Golden Age Iron Fist, Orson Randall. In addition there are more Immortal Weapons who represent the other mystical cities of the far east and also wield strange and unusual powers. Daniel discovers new secrets about his past, and must use these to confront former and new enemies.As well as the main story arcs, there are one shot issues that tell the tales of other bearers of the Iron Fist legacy throughout history, and there are several one shot adventures starring Orson Randall.The main run of the comic ended with issue #27, but a short limited series called Immortal Weapons came along soon afterwards, with each issue focusing on one of the other five Immortal Weapons introduced in the original run, alongside a backup story starring Iron Fist.Due to the success of the Immortal Iron Fist series, Iron Fist and his supporting characters have had a surge of popularity, earning cameos and roles in other Marvel comics, video games, and cartoons. Iron Fist has appeared in Marvel Ultimate Alliance 2, The Super Hero Squad Show, Ultimate Marvel vs. Capcom 3, Marvel Avengers Alliance, The Avengers: Earth's Mightiest Heroes, and the Ultimate Spider-Man animated series, where he is a main character. He's due to get his own series on Netflix in 2015, tying in with the larger Marvel Cinematic Universe.
Comics featuring Iron Fist provide examples of:
Amazon Brigade: Tiger's Beautiful Daughter is the boss of one of these in her home town. The Army of Thunder also counts- while Lei Kung the Thunderer definitely helped train them and they get their name from him, every single member of the Army is a woman.
Arrows on Fire: It turns out Iron Fists can do this with any projectile weapon. Even guns.
Arson, Murder, and Jaywalking: In an early issue, Danny uses several advanced martial arts techniques with millennia of history that require intense skill to perform, culminating in the comparatively mundane "Brooklyn Headbutt."
See also the 'Bronx Sucker Punch'.
Awesome, but Impractical: The Iron Fist ability, at least initially. It was too powerful to use on a standard mook as it'll kill him, and left Danny weakened after using his chi. He's gotten better that it doesn't drain him like it used to.
Calling Your Attacks: The techniques of the Immortal Weapons are named in caption boxes during fights.
Canon Immigrant: The Prince of Orphans is a 1940s Centaur Comics character, John Aman, the Amazing Man, who had fallen into the public domain. Part of why he was introduced was that Iron Fist's 1970s origin was partially inspired by John Aman's origin.
Charles Atlas Superpower: Yes, he can use the chi of the dragon Shou-Lao, but his martial arts skills are all his own, learned by studying in K'un-Lun most of his life.
Cherry Tapping: Dog Brother #1 once killed a man with a mere "Standard Issue Punch" after slicing his head into three perfect segments but leaving him momentarily barely alive.
Chest Insignia: Both Danny and Davos have tattoos burned into their chests from facing the dragon Shou-Lao the Undying. The Prince of Orphans also has a chest symbol pledging his allegiance to Lei Kung the Thunderer.
Combat Hand Fan: Tiger's Beautiful Daughter uses two of these in her fight with Steel Phoenix.
Dragon Lady: Tiger's Beautiful Daughter is a notable example, being Asian, Stripperiffic, and using handheld fans. There are also many examples in the pulp-inspired tales starring Orson Randall.
Dramatic Sit-Down: In the Seven Deadly Weapons spin-off mini, Fat Cobra is an ancient warrior who meets with his biographer. Fat Cobra used chi to long a long life. However, he has amnesia from too much drinking and concussions. During their conversation, he learns just how he became the Cobra Warrior of Peng Lai; he had scores of children with many women. The children grow up and came to get revenge on their dead beat father. He was forced to kill them and, in doing so, gained enough power to become a Cobra Warrior.. Upon hearing this, he burns his biography and dismisses his company. He glares at the fireplace in disgust as he sits alone.
Luke, I Am Your Father: Danny's father returns in The Living Weapon series as a hulking cyborg who burns down Kun-Lun with an army of gun-toting ninjas. He is absolutely delighted to reunite with his son in the third issue and immediately reveals his true identity.
Megaton Punch: The usual application of the power of the Iron Fist.
Mighty Whitey: Largely played down in the more recent series, though introducing a previous Iron Fist, only to declare him another white guy who out-mastered the masters of K'un-Lun did raise a few eyebrows.
My Kung-Fu Is Stronger Than Yours: Shown many times. Danny vs. Davos, Fat Cobra vs. Danny, Bride of Nine Spiders vs. Dog Brother #1, Davos vs. Tiger's Beautiful Daughter, Prince of Orphans vs. Davos (in response to his brutality on the aforementioned fight). Largely the entire point of the Tournament of Heaven.
The Nameless: The ninja-servant girl (who is Orson Randall's daughter) was never named, due to rather restricted freedoms caused by her society's caste system. According to her, she'll have made a name for herself by the time Danny sees her again.
No Holds Barred Beat Down: Davos on Tiger's Beautiful Daughter. And in the next round, Prince of Orphans on Davos to demonstrate that such gratuitous brutality is not acceptable in what's meant to be an honourable tournament.
Obstructive Bureaucrat: In a different comic, Iron Man and the Mighty Avengers confront Danny about his activities with the New Avengers as Iron Fist, which are illegal due to the Super Registration Act. Danny's lawyer, Jeryn Hogarth, points out to Iron Man that Danny is already a registered hero, having registered his fists as lethal weapons. He also points out that, even though everyone seems to know Danny is Iron Fist, no one can technically prove it, except through very unconstitutional means that Tony doesn't want anyone to know about. Jeryn is a pretty pudgy, normal guy, basically telling off some of the most powerful heroes on Earth, and manages to piss off Ms. Marvel, so this is his Crowning Moment Of Awesome.
Old Master: Fat Cobra's teacher, "Iron Crutch" Khan.
Opium Den: Orson Randall suppressed his chi by abusing opium, concealing his existence from those hunting the renegade Iron Fist.
Parental Abandonment: Every holder of the title of Dog Brother #1 is an orphan, usually made so by war.
Perky Goth: One of the possible interpretations of the Bride of Nine Spiders. She seems to have a morbid sense of humor, "giggling" ("Che Che Che Che") with delight at the prospect of violence and death (even her own).
Power Glows: The power of the Iron Fist causes much glowing.
Secret Legacy: Danny didn't know there were Iron Fists before him until the Immortal Iron Fist series in the late 2000s. Additionally, he didn't know his father was almost an Iron Fist before him.
Series Continuity Error: A minor but jarring one. In a flashback eight-year old Danny is seen with Spider-Man action figure... which he could get only via time travel since he and Spidey are about the same age in-universe.
Shotgun Wedding: Very narrowly averted — Misty Knight goes to tell Danny she's pregnant, but he proposes marriage to her before she can tell him. She then checks to make sure he hadn't already worked it out.
Single Power Superheroes: At least initially, his only power was "punch stuff." Since obtaining the Book of the Iron Fist, he's learned a Jedi Mind Trick, and it turns out that Iron Fists can empower any projectiles.
Spikes of Villainy: A Dark Is Not Evil example, as Bride of Nine Spiders' combat gear includes a collar with very long spikes on it. Her social wear also involves a collar with short, decorative spikes.