Some fans have argued that the TV series' lead should not have been Caucasian.
Roy Thomas, co-creator of the original Iron Fist comic books, has defended the show following accusations of “whitewashing”.
Game Of Thrones actor Finn Jones stars in the new Netflix series as Danny Rand aka Iron Fist, a superhero who practises martial arts and has control of a mystical force known as the Iron Fist. Although Rand is portrayed as Caucasian in the comic books, some fans have argued that it would have been more progressive to cast a non-Caucasian actor in the TV series.
Jones recently revealed that he briefly quit Twitter after he spoke out in favour of increasing diversity on screen and was accused of hypocrisy.
Asked if he is aware of the whitewashing controversy, Thomas told Inverse: “Yeah, someone made me vaguely aware of that. I try not to think about it too much. I have so little patience for some of the feelings that some people have. I mean, I understand where it’s coming from. You know, cultural appropriation, my God. It’s just an adventure story.”
He continued: “Don’t these people have something better to do than to worry about the fact that Iron Fist isn’t Oriental, or whatever word? I know Oriental isn’t the right word now, either.”
Later in the interview, Thomas said he would have supported the decision to portray Caucasian with a different ethnicity.
“If they wanted to kill off white Iron Fist and come up with one who wasn’t Caucasian, that wouldn’t have bothered me, but neither am I ashamed for having made up one who was,” Thomas said. “He wasn’t intended to stand for any race. He was just a man who was indoctrinated into a certain thing.”
Following the interview, Iron Fist actress Jessica Henwick – who plays Colleen Wing in the Netflix series – took to Twitter to criticise Thomas for his use of the word “Oriental”.