There’s a big white elephant in the room and his name is Iron Fist. Danny Rand first appeared as the Iron Fist in Marvel Premiere #15. Created by Roy Thomas and Gil Kane to cash in on the kung fu craze that set the ‘70s ablaze, the problem many
readers have with the character is that he’s a wealthy Caucasian male, who’s seemingly benefitted from the appropriation of another culture.
While everyone from Thomas to practitioners of the martial arts will tell you Rand’s race doesn’t matter, there’s no denying that Iron Fist fits snugly into the much-maligned white savior trope permeating mainstream superhero comics. Many viewers cried foul when Marvel Studios missed out on a chance to course correct by casting a white actor in the role for their live action Netflix series. Does this make Iron Fist a bad Avenger? Maybe not, but it’s easy to see how people could be offended.