The pointless controversy over Netflix's new Iron Fist series continues
Jones, who stars as billionaire New York businessman Danny Rand — who becomes the titular hero “Iron Fist” — has previously addressed critics’ complaints with the series, but offered up a new theory in an interview this week with RadioTimes.Why does that sound an awful lot like anti-Trump rhetoric? And what good does it do for Jones to say that when earlier, he claimed critics don't get the series because it's "made for fans" and not critics?
The 28-year-old actor noted that the profile of his “white American billionaire superhero” character is too similar to that of Donald Trump, and that has been off-putting for liberal, Trump-hating television critics.
“I think the world has changed a lot since we were filming that television show,” Jones said. “I’m playing a white American billionaire superhero, at a time when the white American billionaire archetype is public enemy number one, especially in the US.”
“We filmed the show way before Trump’s election, and I think it’s very interesting to see how that perception, now that Trump’s in power, how it makes it very difficult to root for someone coming from white privilege when that archetype is public enemy number one,” the actor insisted.
But, if that's what he thinks, then does that also sum up his view of Batman and Iron Man, whose alter egos are also millionaires? If that's what he thinks, then he's got no business associating himself with anything connected with millionaire characters, and neither do the SJWs he appears to be part of.
As far as the artistic quality of the finished product goes, Heat Street says the show's failure isn't because the star is white, so Jones' argument falls flat.
This isn't the only subject that's arisen involving Danny Rand. Roy Thomas, who co-created the white martial artist with Gil Kane in 1974, had to defend his creation from all the screwballs accusing them of "whitewashing" in an interview with the otherwise pretentious Inverse website (via Entertainment Weekly):
You mentioned before all of the whitewashing controversy that’s been swirling around Iron Fist. Could you expand on that a bit?While he's correct that the SJWs are all making a huge fuss over nothing, I'd like to just quibble with his claim it wouldn't have bothered him if Danny Rand were killed off. It depends. If Danny died a hero, and not as part of some publicity stunt and crossover, I suppose that would work well enough. But if it did turn out to be part of a sensationalized stunt - one that might even turn Danny into a villain for the sake of it, which is arguably worse - then that would be objectionable. In any case, I'm still disappointed if Roy buys into the disposability mindset that saw even some of his own creations for DC killed off in the early 1990s, during the Eclipso: The Darkness Within crossover. And the irony is that some of the biggest victims at the time were a black girl and a Latina, Beth Chapel and Yolanda Montez from Infinity Inc, protegees of the original Dr. Mid-Nite and Wildcat. Something the SJWs attacking him now don't seem to mind, I notice. Why some characters can't just be written into retirement or quietly dropped from the book casts I just don't understand.
Yeah, someone made me vaguely aware of that. I try not to think about it too much. I have so little patience for some of the feelings that some people have. I mean, I understand where it’s coming from. You know, cultural appropriation, my god. It’s just an adventure story. Don’t these people have something better to do than to worry about the fact that Iron Fist isn’t Oriental, or whatever word? I know Oriental isn’t the right word now, either.
He was a character for a comic book at a different time. It’s very easy to second-guess anything. You can argue about Tarzan, you can argue about almost any character who came up then is bound to be not quite PC by some later standard or other. Okay, so you can make some adjustments. If they wanted to kill off white Iron Fist and come up with one who wasn’t Caucasian, that wouldn’t have bothered me, but neither am I ashamed for having made up one who was. He wasn’t intended to stand for any race. He was just a man who was indoctrinated into a certain thing.
I just think some people have too much time on their hands, I guess. They have an infinite capacity for righteous indignation. By and large, that tends to be misplaced quite often because if you’re becoming all upset over things that are just stories, and if you don’t like it, instead of trying to change somebody else’s story, go out and make up your own character and do a good job of it. That’s just fine, but why waste time trying to run down other people’s characters simply because they weren’t created with your standards in mind?And he's right. But these are just the very whiners he acknowledged they are, talentless people who have no interest in impressing upon anybody but their overblown egos.
Now if something is really racist or degrading to a sex or race, an ethnic group or something like that, that’s something else, but Iron Fist isn’t that and never has been. It’s all about a fictitious race, a fictitious place like a Shangri-La, and one person who happens to be its emissary. There’s no reason why he can’t be Caucasian.
Because I did want to reach out to all races. Marvel has always pioneered — for years — in having people of other races in the comics, from Black Panther through Luke Cage and a few others. I made up the concept for another group a little later, I think it was in one of the kung fu magazines we had, “magazines” being the black and white comics, as we called them. I made up a concept — I forget if I made up the name — called the Sons of the Tiger. It was three people: one white, one black, one Asian. I turned that over to other people and let them handle it. I figured if that doesn’t hold, people are just too damn particular, they’re just too damn sensitive for their own good or anybody else’s. But then I really don’t have much sympathy at all to trigger warnings or any of that crap. I think it’s overdone and nobody but a baby needs it, an intellectual baby.
On the other hand, if they had decided to make Iron Fist an Asian, that would have been fine with me, too. I wouldn’t have cared. I didn’t consider myself the safeguard of some kind of Caucasian literary standard or anything like that. But I would have found it easier to write about a Caucasian, so that’s one reason I probably did it. If somebody had suggested, “You want to make it so he’s Asian?” Well, we could have done that too.
He could have a buddy who was Asian. It could have been a trio, like that group I just mentioned. You know, just make up a new character. Don’t worry about trashing another one. Just make up a new one. There’s always room for one, and it’s always better to be creative than to be a critic. I’ve been both. It’s better to be creative. There’s nothing wrong with being a critic, but after a while, you’re basically talking about other people’s work. That’s perfectly okay. There’s nothing wrong with it. It’s a perfectly respectable thing, but I think you should try to put yourself in their shoes instead of constantly complaining because they didn’t do exactly what you think they should have done. Rather than having that, you should go out and do it yourself.
The sad part is that, following this valid complaint by Thomas, SJWs on Twitter predictably sought to label him a "racist" and all other manner of vile descriptions I'm sure they wanted to pin on him for a long time. I have no doubt they think the same about Stan Lee, because he, too, produced ideas that don't fit their PC visions. No doubt, the SJWs see them as just some outmoded "dinosaurs" who produced escapist fare they never intended to read. They refused to recognize that he's aware "oriental" may not be considered an appropriate term for "Asian" in the US these days (over in the UK, it's still used) and just proved his point - they've either got too much time on their hands, or, they've got nothing better to do. That's exactly why they're not even requesting Shang Chi, Master of Kung Fu, who is Asian, be considered for TV adaptation.
But if Joe Quesada and company decided a few years ago, I'm sure they would've been more than overjoyed to replace Danny Rand with a different character under the mask, just like they've done with the Hulk, Iron Man and Ms. Marvel, if it made for some short-term publicity in their hopes that SJWs would actually read the crap it was bound to be. As for the Iron Fist TV show, it probably is on its way to becoming the least successful of the Netflix adaptations, but I really can't bring myself to care, seeing how these adaptations have taken higher priority for Marvel than all the comics they're still desecrating.