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Immortal Iron Fist By Matt Fraction, Ed Brubaker & David Aja Omnibus HC Hardcover – 24 Jun 2009

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Amazon.com: 8 reviews
12 of 13 people found the following review helpful
Someone manages to make Iron Fist cool! 7 Sept. 2009
By Paul Acevedo - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
If you were familiar with Iron Fist before reading Ed Brubaker's new take, you probably thought of him as another second-rate 70's throwback who exists mostly to provide a supporting role to more important characters like Daredevil. I wasn't really interested in him before reading this Omnibus, but Ed Brubaker's writing is always phenomenal so I gave it a shot. It was worth it!

Iron Fist has been successfully contemporized. He no longer looks silly (thanks to David Aja's sleek designs), and he inhabits an interesting world. Iron Fist was always about martial arts, but now he has been given a place in a grand epic. As it turns out, there have been many Iron Fists throughout time - men and a woman of various nationalities, all given superhuman abilities in order to fight evil. The story is told with brilliant flashbacks, much like the first Highlander film. This makes Danny Rand's role as Iron Fist seem so much more important than just a typical superhero. The stories in this omnibus are broken up into several arcs, with the first involving Rand and his predecessor proving the most interesting. There are a couple of issues in-between arcs that solely tell the tales of past Iron Fists. These are fun and unique, but they interrupt the flow of the book as a whole.

Other highlights include a meeting between Iron Fist and Daredevil (which connects to Brubaker's run on Daredevil, of course) and a retelling of Danny Rand's origin. I was slightly disappointed that the origin story stops before everything is resolved, leaving a few pages of text to explain what happens next. David Aja's art is fantastic across the board, but several issues are drawn by other artists and sometimes they have a real budget look. Still, if you want engaging, unique stories that take place within the Marvel universe, you can't do much better than this Omnibus.
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
A true masterpiece of modern comics 17 Feb. 2010
By Leandro M. Duarte - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This deluxe omnibus edition contains the critically acclaimed relaunch of the Iron Fist character led by amazingly talented writers Ed Brubaker and Matt Fraction and by spanish artist extraordinaire David Aja. It collects Immortal Iron Fist #1-16 (divided into two subsequent, related arcs: "The Last Iron Fist Story" and "The Seven Capital Cities of Heaven"), Civil War: Choosing Sides, Annual #1, Orson Randall and the Green Mist of Death, and The Origin of Danny Rand.

I think there's no other way to express how I felt upon reading this book than to say that I was completely blown away. Iron Fist, a fairly unknown character of the 70's, one that many would see as being nothing beyond a gimmick inspired by the kung-fu pop influence over that decade, is gifted with one of the best comics series of the last years.

Firstly, it seems to me that, in order to enjoy this book, there is no need for deep previous knowledge of the Iron Fist character and his mythology. While the story packs a few surprises regarding the story of the Iron Fist legacy, it never punishes new readers. I, for instance, while always fascinated with the concept of the character, didn't know much more than the basic about him. Besides, the first issue shows us a glimpse of Danny Rand's (Iron Fist's not-so-secret identity) origin story, and for those willing to know more this omnibus also handily contains "The Origin of Danny Rand" story, which presents the comic that gave birth to the character.

About the story, there isn't really much I can say without spoiling a little bit of the plot. So let's just say that, as of the beginning of this series, Iron Fist is returning from a kind of self-imposed retirement: having abandoned his costume and his battles for some time in order to fight the fight of others, Danny feels it's time to carry his own burdens again, to reembrace the legacy he has left behind. This is shown in the "Choosing Sides" one-shot special, a cool story featuring Daredevil and Iron Fist published during the "Civil War" mega-crossover. This story, also present in this omnibus, is kind of the spiritual predecessor to the main series, and I really recommend reading it first. Besides, it makes more sense, chronologically speaking.

And now we come to the aspect of this book that freaked me out the most: David Aja's art. Right from the very start I realized I was in for a delightful visual journey. The beautiful flashback scene that fills the first couple of pages is followed by a wondrous double-page spread showing Iron Fist fighting against a horde of Hydra terrorists over a rooftop under the crashing rain, a scene that made me shiver in awe of Aja's artistic mastery. And that was just the beggining. Aja really took his time to craft innovative page breakdowns, and used at all times various techniques to tell the best story possible from a visual point of view. The fighting scenes (along with all others, by the way) are intense and fluid, and the characters seem to pop from the pages. What is more, Aja's general depiction of Iron Fist and his redesign of Danny Rand's costume are simply superb, and the very cover pattern design he came up with is awesomely elegant.

What brings me to the only fault I found with the series (other than the fact that it came to an end - I really wanted it to go on forever): the art inconsistency in the last issues. Probably due to Aja's attention to details and elaborate drawings, he just couldn't keep up with deadlines for some of the latter issues. That led Marvel to bring in other artists in order to help the regular artist completing them in time. That situation reached its pinnacle in issue 15, the last of the second arc of the story, where Aja's art is nowhere to be seen. Don't take me wrong: the fill-in artists are great and deliver an explosive and satisfying conclusion. But there is no denial that the series would have greatly benefited from having Aja draw its finale. Fortunately, he came back to pencil and ink the wonderful issue 16, the very last brought to life by this genious creative team of Brubaker-Fraction-Aja. But these are all minor qualms, that detract nothing from the overall experience.

Finally, a couple words about the extras: this book comes packed with a detailed encyclopedia-like entry on Iron Fist, covering all his story up until to the end of the stories contained in the omnibus, alternate covers, excerpts from the original script for the first issue, sketches from the artists, some comments by David Aja on the character designs he created or updated and a cool e-mail exchange between the creators. Very nice, but, considering the deluxe treatment of this edition, I couldn' help but feel that the publishers could have added some more extras, like an interview with the creators (something they did, for example with the Captain America Omnibus #1 by Ed Brubaker and Steve Epting). But, again, these are minor quibbles: there is some cool extra stuff packed here.

To sum it all up, I can't recommend this book enough. The combination of great writing and great art resulted in one artistic work that has right off the bat exerted some kind of mesmerization over me. Maybe that's because because of my real life fascination over kung fu, but I don't think that alone would be enough to grab my attention (and this book obviously has some kind of pert, crazy [but ultimately respectful] humor underlying the martial arts-related themes - don't expect to see anyone delivering burning dove chops in real life any time soon). What I truly believe is that this book has something to please everyone, be it the dynamic and intelligent script, the character development, the action, the kung-fu, the humor, the martial arts-related mysticism, the mithology, the noir tone, the gorgeous artwork etc, the psychotic AT-AT spider nightmares... Simply put, this is one of my all-time favorite comic series, one that was initially met with suspicion but that ended up becoming like unto a thing of greatness.
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
Iron Fist Knows the Best Kung-Fu 16 Nov. 2009
By Uthor - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover
This collects Brubaker's and Fraction's run on The Immortal Iron Fist. They took Iron Fist and created a modern twist on a kung-fu movie. The story weaves Iron Fist with the larger Marvel universe (Civil War, Heroes for Hire) for a bit, but mainly focuses on a complex mythology featuring all the past Iron Fists in history. The main plot is about Danny, his father, and Orson Wendell (the previous Iron Fist) and their relationship with the mystic city of K'un-L'un. It takes Danny back to his home to participate in a tournament with the other Immortal Weapons, but with larger events taking place, including a revolution of the old ways.

The art by Aja is very kinetic and well suited for the kung-fu action. The coloring is dark and moody, giving a weight to the story. It reminds me a lot of the art in by Alex Maleev in Bendis' Daredevil.

The only complaint I can have is the placement of the Annual and the Orson Randall and The Green Mist of Death stories in the omnibus. They follow the plotting of the story, but they ruin the pacing. Also, the "framing" artwork in the Annual is terrible.

Other than the two minor quibbles, this is a fantastic read. It's a surprisingly complex story with plenty of action and enough comedy to keep the reader entertained. Brubaker, Fraction, and Aja leave after this collection, leaving Duane Swierczynski to continue to the story. Having read those issues, I can say that the title continues being just as great. I hope there's an Omnibus vol. 2 in the future.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
The days of epic storytelling are here, my friends. 9 Aug. 2012
By Nick Fury - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover
When I first picked up this series, I knew nothing about Danny Rand or the Iron Fist. I had seen him in the background here or there but never quite picked up on what he was about. I decided to start reading it when my nephew had recommended it. We are both Daredevil fans and he said I would enjoy this.

I must say that this is one of the better written stories I have picked up since The Watchmen. It is excellently written and the art work is superb. As a fan of most things Marvel, I have to admit, this brought him up to a very high status in my ranking behind Nick Fury, Daredevil and Captain America.

The endings of each graphic novel and even in them, each comic, leave you hanging on a thread waiting to see what happens next.

I have since gone back and read some early 'Power Man & Iron Fist' comics to enjoy some of the earlier stories and I have to say, they have completely revamped this character. Not so much that he is not the same person, but wrote him as a character that you can now care about and care what happens to him and those around him. I even went back to purchase the New Avengers volume 1 to read beginning to end just to get more Iron Fist.

The days of epic storytelling are here my friends, no longer will you has to cross story lines or wait for Allen Moore to pump out another one. The comic industry has realized that putting more effort into finding these writers that truly care about developing intricate plots can pay off big.

This book sits proudly on my shelf next to the Secret Warriors and Captain America omnibus's respectively.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Take a Little Bruce Lee, Take a little Indiana Jones... 18 Nov. 2010
By Sir Ratesabunch - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This omnibus feels like the spiritual rebirth of 70s kung fu movies (with a bit of the newer ones with better crafted stories) and serial adventures that inspired Star Wars and Indiana Jones. They all mix so well here. There are secret pasts, secret plots, cheesy-but-awesome roving gangs of never-do-wells and adventurers, stories within stories, kung fu masters, a very Enter the Dragon-esque tournament, subplots galore, and they all intricately and seamlessly weave into one of the greatest comic book stories I've ever read.

Is it worth it? It's really hard to swallow the price of this omnibus, but considering the length, considering the quality of story telling, the quality of the art (most of the time; it falters in a couple, maybe three issues of the 18 or so included) it's great value for money. Though if you are on the fence, I'd highly recommend first going to a local bookstore or comic shop and browsing through the first issue of The Immortal Iron Fist.
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