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"It's called ... a grand duel. Hand's version of a challenge. Their best fighters against me."
Danny Rand to Colleen Wing[src]

The Da Jue Zhan is a traditional grand duel hosted by the Hand, where the organization sends their best warriors against a single opponent. If the opponent wins, the Hand will meet his demands.

Background

Radovan Bernivig told Danny Rand that his daughter was kidnapped by The Hand. Since the Hand had infiltrated Rand Enterprises, Rand demanded to his assistant the location of all the company's warehouses, in hope of the chemist's daughter being in one of them. However, he was interrupted by Ward Meachum, who ordered him to attend a meeting with Wayne Olsen about the crisis started by Rand when he apologized to a woman who claimed one of Rand Enterprises chemical plants made her daughter develop cancer. Believing the life of the woman was more important than the meeting, Rand convinced Ward to check out all six warehouses. In the fourth one, they found a container which had inside it, the head of the man Rand fought the night before as well as an invitation to a grand duel.

At his return, Danny told Colleen Wing and Claire Temple about the invitation. Even if Temple thought they should call the police and Wing desired to follow him, Rand made it clear he would go there alone. He then meditated in preparation for the challenge to come.[5]

Grand Duel

First Challenge

Iron Fist Empire Promo

Iron Fist fights both of the Veznikov brothers

Danny Rand was challenged by Madame Gao to defeat the Veznikov brothers, who are Andrei Veznikov and Grigori Veznikov. Danny Rand introduced himself to the Twins, who thought that it was a joke since he did not look like a fighter. When the billionaire mocked them for bragging while they were two against him, they said they were one, cut their hands and made a circle with their blood which represented the limits of the arena. Rand prepared himself to fight and challenged them. Gao then started the duel by dripping her stick on the floor. The Twins attacked him from both sides making Rand unable to counter their attacks. Downed by the brothers, he recalled his teacher's instructions, which were to fight "like a double-edged sword".Following this instruction, Danny adopted a fighting style that allowed him to strike and counter at the same time. While he fought better this time, Rand was downed one again, only to go up and kick Grigori out of the blood circle after reminding himself that he was a living weapon. He then proceeded to break one of Andrei's arms and to force him to surrender. After defeating them, Gao told him that it was just the first challenge.[5]

Second Challenge

Bride fighting

Bride of Nine Spiders tries to poison Iron Fist

Madame Gao led Danny Rand to the second challenge. In it, Rand had to defeat the Bride of Nine Spiders. She took advantage of his naivety by seducing him and subtly inject poisoned needles into his neck which quickly began to affect him. Disoriented and with his vision troubled, Rand tried to strike her, only to have more poisoned needles implanted into his body. With his face on the fence of the arena, Rand reminded himself of Lei Kung's words about accepting or rejecting the darkness within him which made him able focus again. With his mind now cleared, Danny delivered a powerful kick to her head, incapacitating her. Gao then announced that the second challenge had been won.[5]

Third Challenge

Danny Rand Martial Arts

Scythe finally battles against the Iron Fist

"Would you like to choose a weapon?"
"I am the weapon."
"Really? Because weapons don't feel pain. They are meant for one thing... and one thing only. To be used by their master."
Scythe and Iron Fist[src]

Madame Gao then led Danny Rand to the third challenge. In the third challenge, he had to defeat Scythe. His opponent started by insulting him. He then proposed him to choose a weapon which Rand replied by stating that he was the weapon. Scythe explained to him that weapons don't feel pain and that their only purpose is to serve their master. Scythe picked his own weapon, a naginata, and they started to fight. During the fight, Rand managed to break Scythe's weapon, which made him pick a scythe. Not long after that, they went to the next room. Fortunately for the Iron Fist, the room was full of scaffolding which put his adversary at a disadvantage since he didn't have enough space to use his scythe correctly. Eventually, their combat led them to a final room. There, Danny used his Iron Fist to break Scythe's weapon. He then managed to enter a state in which he was completely mentally focused and he punched his adversary to the ground with the power his Chi gave him.[5]

Aftermath

Before Danny Rand was able to honorably defeat Scythe, Madame Gao stopped him, forcing him to choose between dishonorably forfeit the Da Jue Zhan or let Sabina Bernivig die. Limited in choice, Rand chose to spare him, managing to free Sabina from the Hand. As he tried to leave, however, he was baited by Gao on the chance that she could disclose more information on how she knew his father. He was, however, projected away upon getting too close to her and she left the scene. Rand and the girl then departed from the place, while the former questioned himself about his choice.[5]

References

  1. Chinese New Year, Year of the Monkey appears in Snow Gives Way (1, 2, 3, 4)
  2. The Defenders: 1.03: Worst Behavior
  3. Iron Fist: Season 1 ends a couple of months before The Defenders: Season 1 (1, 2), which is 6 months after Elektra's death.
  4. Iron Fist: 1.01: Snow Gives Way
  5. 5.0 5.1 5.2 5.3 5.4 Iron Fist: 1.06: Immortal Emerges from Cave