Ah, 2013. Back when America loved a privileged white billionaire, before they were considered “the bad guys.” That’s when Marvel first began developing the Iron Fist show for Netflix, and, according to beleaguered star Finn Jones, the changes in the world since then are at fault for the negative reception the show has seen from critics, as well as the backlash his casting has received online.
“I think the world has changed a lot since we were filming that television show,” Jones said in an interview with The Radio Times. “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.”
Of course, the billionaire Jones is specifically referring to is President Donald Trump. “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,” Jones explained, going on to explain that people need to watch the whole show to really understand where Danny Rand is coming from.
Blaming Trump for Iron Fist’s bad reviews is a risky gambit. On the one hand, Trump is at fault for so many things that it’s not difficult to accept he could be responsible for this too. On the other hand, Donald Trump’s supporters are likely the people most likely to dismiss complaints of white savior tropes or whitewashing as politically correct phooey and like the show out of spite, regardless of any other flaws. Perhaps Jones should have instead chosen to go full alt-right and embrace Trumpsters as Iron Fist’s target demographic. He went the predictable but often effective “blame Trump” route instead, and now we’ll get to see if this gambit pays off when Iron Fist hits Netflix on March 17.