I'm still trying to figure out who I'm gonna be as the Iron Fist. Lei Kung taught me that I was a powerful weapon... a flame meant to destroy our enemies. But I keep thinking that... maybe I can be something else. A light... for those trapped in the darkness.
~ Danny Rand to Colleen Wing
Daniel Thomas "Danny" Rand-K'ai is the titular protagonist of the web television series Iron Fist, and one of the main protagonists of The Defenders. He is the only child of the owners of Rand Enterprises, who lost his parents in a plane crash which resulted with the young Rand being rescued by monks and taken to K'un-Lun where he trained and eventually took the title of the Iron Fist.
He is portrayed by Finn Jones.
My compassion is a choice. It doesn't come easy.
~ Danny Rand to Davos
Stranded in K'un-Lun for fifteen years, Danny Rand has suppressed his emotions most of his life and trained as a living weapon among his strict teachers at K'un-Lun. This has led him to never fully accept or emotionally vent over his grief surrounding his parents death. Despite obtaining the prestige title of the Iron Fist and his own tremendous martial art abilities, Rand suffers from an identity crisis; whilst he feels bound to his duty to protect and serve K'un-Lun as previous Iron Fist's have done before him and destroy the Hand, Rand also sought to discover who he was outside of K'un-Lun's walls yet leaving without telling his masters and friends plagues his guilt and inner conflict. It's this that occasionally prevents him from unlocking the true power of the Iron Fist. Rand's Survivor's Guilt causes flashes back to the plane crash which causes him to act more reckless, angered and sporadic in blocking the Iron Fist. It is these memory flashes and the constant hostility that he received when trying to convince his former friends of his identity that caused him to become more threatening and unstable. In his fits of frustration, Rand aimed a gun at Ward Meachum after disarming the latter and almost drove both of them off the roof of a parking lot building due to Meachum's hostility.
Being the youngest of the Defenders and never spending a day outside of K'un-Lun in fifteen years, Rand has a childish and immature personality, causing him to be ignorant to how modern society works and incredibly naive. After fifteen years of being thought dead, Rand did not see the illogic that by returning to New York City, shoeless and unshaven, he would have been confused for a homeless or delusional person except after when he was submitted to a mental institution. His only connection to modern day New York are the several locations he knew when he was young, such as the restaurant his father ate at is where he got takeout for Colleen Wing and him. Whilst his youth, lack of intelligence and forethought makes him easy to be manipulated as well his tendency to act on anger or impulse, Rand's innocence is also his greatest strength as Claire Temple noted that, on account of having met people with powers beforehand, he has a heart and kindness that they all lacked.
Despite, or maybe because of his naïveté, Rand is extremely compassionate. He made sure that, even as a factory payload were all being laid off, they were all compensated at great financial loss to Rand Enterprises. Rand had never killed anyone; even though the Order of the Crane Mother expected him to to defeat the Hand, he only incapacitated most Hand warriors he thought, willingly surrendered from the Da Jue Zhan in order to save Sabina Bernivig's life even though it would have caused the Hand to fled New York and refused to kill Madame Gao in China even after it was revealed she murdered his parents, though he threatened her life when Colleen was close to death by the Hand's poisoned weapons. In his anger towards the Hand's manipulations, he was motivated to work on killing Bakuto and the Hand. The closest he ever came to truly wanting to murder someone was Harold Meachum over his betrayal and murder of his parents but was eventually saved from this by Ward Meachum killing Harold.
After Matt Murdock's death and the destruction of Midland Circle, Danny decides to honor his fallen comrade by becoming a vigilante like him. He retains his compassion for others as both he and Colleen helped Misty through her physical therapy and provided Luke a place to stay while hiding from Bushmaster. Since then, upon meeting Luke at Pop's, Danny has become far more relaxed, laid-back and mature in personality. He has also displayed far more emotional wisdom and control than before, noting how Luke was at war with himself. He explains that 'Stillness is power', stopping to look and understand the situation. He also shown some humility, having both acknowledged his past behavior and the advantage he has by being wealthy. This new emotional development has allowed Danny to properly control and summon the Iron Fist at will, something he wasn't able to do in the past.
Powers & Abilities
If I can summon my chi, I can focus my energy into my hand, creating a powerful weapon.
~ Danny Rand
Chi Manipulation: Under the tutelage of the Order of the Crane Mother, Danny Rand gain deep knowledge and understanding of chi. After gaining the power of the Iron Fist, Danny Rand can harness his own chi to augment his physical and mental capabilities. Through the use of his chi, Rand is capable of generating an "internal force" that removes the need for charging momentum. The special chi of the Iron Fist bestowed by Shou-Lao also grants Rand many abilities that he has not yet learned, due to him leaving K'un-Lun before his Iron Fist training started.
He's a little off in the head, but he packs a mean right hook when it counts.
~ Luke Cage to Jessica Jones
Iron Fist Punch: By channeling the chi of Shou-Lao and focusing it into his hand and wrist, Rand can make his fist super-humanly powerful and resistant to injury and pain. With his fist in this state, Rand can exert superhuman strength and force with which he can smash through steel doors, break out of restraints, and punch his opponents with tremendous concussive force without sustaining injury to himself. When Rand uses the Iron Fist, his fist's density and durability is seemingly on the level of Luke Cage's extremely durable skin, as he can use his fist to deflect bullets and blades while sustaining no harm. He could even injure Luke and send him flying with a single punch to the face. Luke himself described Rand's punching power as hard as a sledgehammer. Using chi in such fashion takes time and effort to build up, meaning he cannot access it effortlessly and at all times, as he is sometimes unable to repeat the act for hours or even an entire day in certain instances due to it draining his own chi. Also, Rand's emotional, mental and physical state are essential to him using his powers, with drugs being able to suppress his abilities and emotional conflict removing his ability to use the fist.
Chi Absorption: Studying the ancient scrolls of the ritual, Danny Rand learned how to absorb chi. While he have not used the technique on anyone yet, he has enough understanding to instruct Colleen Wing on how to use it.
Chi Blast: Danny Rand's fist is able to release powerful waves of concussive force upon impact, sending not only his opponent flying backwards, but all those around them. Rand first used this during his fight with his fellow Defenders, he punched Luke Cage but ended up knocking back everyone in the entire room, including himself. The impact also sent all the objects in the room flying up in the air. He later used this during the fight under Midland Circle, he was able to knock down not just Madame Gao, but all the Hand members around her, with a single blow. With enough effort and motivation, the Iron Fist's chi could also send objects and people flying, as he was able to eject several poison needles the Bride of Nine Spiders from his body, causing them to shoot out in multiple directions and shatter the glass around him. When several Hand operatives where piling around him and Davos, Rand knocked them all off with a forceful shove, some of them he did not even touch while doing so, leaving the men incapacitated.
Chi Sense: By focusing on the living body of another, Danny Rand can feel that person's inherent life force, as well as sense impurities infecting the body. By using this practice, Rand was able to hold his hand and use his chi to sense the poison that was affecting Colleen Wing.
Chi Healing: Danny Rand is capable of healing his wounds by channeling his chi. When a bullet pierced his hand, he was able to regenerate the wound in a matter of seconds by summoning the Iron Fist. Also, by holding his hand over her body, Rand was able to use his chi to burn the poison that was killing Colleen Wing.
Chi Channeling: Danny Rand has the power to channel his chi into his dual pistols, making the bullets glow and aimed directly to other objects in order to destroy them completely.
Enhanced Agility: Channeling his chi allows Danny Rand to perform athletic feats that should be impossible for a human, such as effortlessly flipping over a taxi cab, or taking two jumps to get up to a second-story balcony.
Enhanced Reflexes: Channeling his chi allows Danny Rand to enhance his focus and perception. This allows him to react to danger in mid-combat at a superhuman rate. He was able to react to and easily dodge a bullet, as well as effortlessly, one-handedly block the attacks from one of the Hand's best warriors, without looking.
Enhanced Endurance: Channeling his chi enhances Danny Rand's resilience and stamina, which allows him to not only not tire from fighting multiple opponents, but also withstand being hit in the back of the head by brass knuckles, which merely left him stunned for a few moments, only being knocked unconscious by falling unto a ledge from two stories and defeating multiple opponents with Davos despite being stabbed in the side by Bakuto. In fact, being struck multiple times with wooden batons allowed him to overcome the effects of drugs used to keep him weak at Birch Psychiatric Hospital and subsequently summon the powers of the Iron Fist that was previously blocked from him by the drugs.
Empathy: Danny Rand has the ability to sense the emotions of people and animals, and can broadcast his own feelings into others. After breaking into Joy Meachum's home, Rand was able to stop her dog from attacking him by sending his own calm emotions into the dog, causing it to lay down and become uninterested. While helping Luke Cage in his fight against Bushmaster, Rand was able to feel the turmoil in Cage, how he was at war with himself and how it was putting his mind and body off balance.
The way he fights... not just his body, but... but his heart. It's like a second language to him.
~ Colleen Wing
Master Martial Artist: Under Lei Kung's tutelage, Danny Rand has underwent rigorous training in ancient Chinese martial arts since childhood, thus he has exceptional mastery of Kung Fu. His martial arts prowess, combined with his mystical power of the Iron Fist, allows him to overpower most of his enemies effortlessly, shown when he fought three-to-one while wearing a straitjacket. His fighting style is comprised of Wushu, Tai Chi, and Tiger and Leopard-style Kung Fu. Rand has also demonstrated proficiency with multiple weapons, including swords and nun-chucks. Even without the Iron Fist, Rand is able to take down well trained security guards including a large man taller than him with sheer skill and dexterity. Throughout the series Rand was able to almost effortlessly defeat the Hand's best fighters, as well as Hand leaders, Bakuto and Murakami.
Sword Mastery: Danny Rand's mastery of ancient Chinese martial arts also extend to swordsmanship, as shown by him wielding a wooden practice sword in a manner similar to a Jian and was able to effortlessly bring down Colleen's student by striking him in the leg. He managed to fight equally against the skilled weapon expert, Mary Walker, using Colleen Wing's Katana.
He... he stepped out onto the street, right in front of a car, but then he just sorta put his hand out and jumped over it like it was nothing.
~ Joy Meachum
Master Acrobat: Danny Rand is extremely agile and has great skill in parkour and free-running, which are combined with his chi to give him the ability to perform stunts that should be impossible for a human. As such, Rand demonstrated being able to climb and leap onto the second floor of a building and enter the room through the window. He also managed to effortlessly leap over a taxi cab that was seconds away from running him over, to cling to the rafters of Chikara Dojo to hide from Ward Meachum's thugs and to climb and leap over a wall it in a matter of seconds to elude pursuers. His extraordinary athletic prowess is incorporated into fighting style, making full use of his incredible agility to disarm enemies off their firearms and subdue them with lighting quick reflexes giving them no time at all to retaliate.
Multilingualism: Rand is fluent both in his native English and Chinese Mandarin. In addition, he was able to read an ancient Tibean language that is considered dead to the rest of the world outside Kun' Lun.
Meditation: Rand had practiced meditation to recharge his chi, as well as to calm his mind.
Expert Marksman: Rand was able to shoot with dual handguns that he used to channel his chi with excellent marksmanship.