Many consider Netflix's Iron Fist to be the weakest of the solo series leading up to The Defenders, citing problems with its storytelling, white-washing and action sequences. Despite that negative reception, The Defenders executive producer Marco Ramirez has said that other characters teasing Danny Rand in the team-up series was not influenced by that reaction, as the show was already late into production when Iron Fist premiered.
"We were shooting the finale of The Defenders when Iron Fist season 1 was premiering, so by the nature of it, we couldn't have reacted to it," Ramirez told Entertainment Weekly. "Any interaction they have to Danny is all based on just the dynamics we wanted to build. It felt like, if somebody came in and said, 'My fist glows with chi and I punched a dragon and turned into this,' there's no way around the fact that Jessica Jones is going to say, 'Bullsh–, you sound like a crazy person.' Even if the dragon were in the room with them, Jessica is going to be like, 'I don't believe that, what the f-- are we talking about?'"
"So that's the natural dynamic of what we wanted to build," he continued, "because Matt and Luke and Jessica had already been introduced, and for comic-book shows, they're all so grounded and so gritty, but like if a guy walks in to these rooms with a glowing fist saying, 'My chi is expanding,' all of them will say 'I don't buy it.' That's the natural thing for them to do."
The Defenders has been positively received so far and is certified fresh on Rotten Tomatoes. CBR's review praised the miniseries for its "...magnetic cast, intense fight choreography and a captivating villain," while noting that it suffers from "some of the same problems that plagued Iron Fist."
The Punisher will be the next Marvel Netflix series to come out; the trailer for which debuted as a post-credits scene for The Defenders. That series is slated for release later this year.
Available now on Netflix, The Defenders stars Charlie Cox as Matt Murdock, Krysten Ritter as Jessica Jones, Mike Colter as Luke Cage, Finn Jones as Danny Rand, Elodie Yung as Elektra Natchios, Sigourney Weaver as Alexandra, Eka Darville as Malcolm Ducasse, Simone Missick as Misty Knight, Deborah Ann Woll as Karen Page, Elden Henson as Foggy Nelson, Carrie-Anne Moss as Jeri Hogarth, Scott Glenn as Stick, Rachael Taylor as Trish Walker, Rosario Dawson as Claire Temple and Jessica Henwick as Colleen Wing.