DISCLAIMER: This recap of The Defenders contains more spoilers than the number of times people have tried to sneak up behind Matt Murdock…and failed. Because he is the King of Sneak. You’ve been warned. Proceed with caution.

Welcome back, Defenders of New York! Episode 5 of The Defenders saw our heroes fighting off The Hand in full force. They even interacted with all five “fingers.” Yes, we discovered that Bakuto is really alive, and he threatened my precious Colleen. Not cool, dude. Also, Elektra remembers Matt! Don’t think we didn’t see you snuggling in his bed, Black Sky. So many things happened, and I need time to process it all. Let’s do it together, shall we? Make sure to center your chi first. 

The Boys are back in town.

We open with a montage of all the “fingers” of The Hand preparing for battle. Madame Gao (Wai Ching Ho) and her army lined up behind her. Sowande (Babs Olusanmokun) is sitting in the back of a truck, surrounded by his fellow soldiers. Murakami (Yutaka Takeuchi) is ready for the inevitable battle. All of them are heading straight for the Royal Dragon – the reinforcements, surely summoned by Alexandra. 

Then, everyone arrives just in time for the fun. We see our Defenders already in the throes of battle: Matt Murdock (Charlie Cox), Jessica Jones (Krysten Ritter), Luke Cage (Mike Colter) and Danny Rand (Finn Jones) are all fighting off the baddies. These fight scenes are really something to behold. Stick (Scott Glenn) is also duking it out alongside our heroes. Then, Matt sidelines Elektra (Elodie Yung), trying to get her alone. 

Time to kick some Hand butt (that sounds weird).

Next, our former lovebirds take their fight outside the restaurant. Matt attempts to snap her out of it, while Elektra continues to pummel him. Then, Matt says her name. She stops and stares at him. It appears as if a light bulb turned on in her head. Murakami finds them outside and makes a break for Matt, but Elektra casts him aside like a rag doll. Elektra runs away. 

Later, we see Luke and Sowande battling. They take it outside and into the street. Then, a truck barrels down the road and hits Luke. Uh oh. After a long stretch of fighting, Jessica and Danny try to escape. They clamber through the back door, where Matt and Elektra were. Jessica tosses a dumpster in front of said door to prevent The Hand from following them. Our trio scampers off. 

Then, Madame Gao busts the back door open and the dumpster formerly blocking it goes flying. She’s got moves! Murakami is angry that Black Sky didn’t turn out to be the weapon they hoped she would be. Alexandra (Sigourney Weaver) watches the scene from afar, knowing her comrades are slowly turning against her. 

Later, our gang seeks shelter at Colleen’s dojo. They try to formulate their next move. Suddenly, the door opens and in strolls Luke, perfectly intact. Yay for all the good people being alive right now! Then, Luke reveals that he captured Sowande. Double yay! 

Pictured: Jessica Henwick and Charlie Cox

Meanwhile, Alexandra finds Elektra in her room sharpening her sword, as you do. She gives our girl another thinly veiled threat regarding her performance as weapon of The Hand. Expectations are Black Sky high with this one (I’m sorry). Murakami enters, asking to speak with Alexandra, presumably regarding Elektra. Once again, Yung impresses me with her ability to communicate seamlessly without words. 

Then, our Defenders bring Sowande to a warehouse. Abandoned warehouses are perfect for interrogations. Danny asks Sowande why The Hand wants him, to which the latter responds that they desire the Fist, not Danny. Next, Sowande monologues about how The Hand will go after everyone close to our heroes. He even describes the loved ones of everyone present. Jessica then knocks him unconscious with an iron fist of her own (I’m sorry again). 

Later, Luke arrives home to a sleeping Claire (Rosario Dawson). He tells her that she has to lay low for a few days. Claire immediately understands the situation – The Hand is now targeting the loved ones of the Defenders. She goes with him. 

Then, Colleen (Jessica Henwick) and Danny are sitting in the car, and they spot two black vehicles drive past them. Looks like Hand material to me. They both exit and split up to cover more ground. Danny enters a back alley and is ambushed by a handful (heehee) of Hand members. Thankfully, he fights his way out of it. Colleen runs into a familiar face – Bakuto (Ramon Rodriguez), who is very much alive. He offers to take her under his wing once again. Colleen rejects him, not wanting to be part of The Hand. Bakuto was sent to retrieve Danny, but he really came for her. He cares so much that he slashes her stomach with his sword. 

Next, Danny arrives on the scene with Claire and Luke in tow. After some verbal sparring with Danny, Bakuto disappears. Claire declares that they need to get Colleen somewhere safe for medical attention. So, off they pop to do just that. 

Meanwhile, Matt stops by Karen’s (Deborah Ann Woll) workplace. He confesses that he’s back at it again with the vigilante stuff. Of course, this news disappoints Karen but she understands. Matt reveals that the situation with The Hand has escalated to dangerous new territory, and Karen needs to lay low for a few days for her own safety. Karen relents, albeit begrudgingly. So much tension between these two!

Pictured: Deborah Ann Woll and Charlie Cox

Later, Luke arrives at the police station and pulls Misty (Simone Missick) aside. He explains how all of New York is in danger due to the rise of The Hand. Misty vows to help but she needs more information. Luke responds that it’s best if she doesn’t know all the facts. He’s not wrong. 

Meanwhile, Stick is keeping watch over Sowande. The latter goes into detail regarding the day The Chaste fell. Stick listens with reticence. Sowande vows it won’t be long before the Defenders’s plan falls apart. Speaking of which, Matt arrives and tells Stick that they’re all sequestering away their loved ones to keep them safe. Stick attempts to advise Matt under the guise of berating once again, which irritates our Daredevil. 


Later, we see Trish Walker (Rachael Taylor) is having dinner with fellow workmates of Trish Talks. She’s passionately explaining where she envisions the radio show could end up. Jessica shows up and pulls Trish away from her dinner party. Suddenly, members of The Hand arrive on the scene. Jessica and Trish escape down a side staircase. Then, Jessica is found by one of the assassins. She launches into attack mode, and fights him. 

Next, our very own Daredevil, dressed head to toe in his superhero regalia, joins the fight. Jessica, however, lands the punch that sends him over the guard railing. Team work makes the dream work, guys!

Meanwhile, Colleen confesses to Claire that she feels unimportant in the grand scheme of things. Claire is bandaging our girl up. She also comforts Colleen, telling her that she’s the very foundation of everything. I love Claire a lot. 

Then, we see Trish and Malcolm (Eka Darville) are sitting together in the police station. Trish firmly believes that the tremors could be connected to The Hand. They spot Karen entering and Trish immediately knows who she is. She knows Karen is a reporter. Foggy (Elden Henson) also arrives on the scene, reuniting happily with Karen. Next, Misty enters the holding room and informs everyone to stay put. She chats with Colleen regarding her katana blade, by telling her it’s weird to carry it around. If I had a katana sword, I would most certainly take it everywhere I go. 

Pictured: Rachael Taylor and Eka Darville

Meanwhile, Madame Gao and Bakuto discuss his clouded judgement when it comes to Colleen. Alexandra and Murakami join them, with the former chastising Bakuto for not acquiring the Iron Fist. Murakami reveals to the group that Danny has a new partner in heroism – Daredevil. Someone’s no longer retired!

Later, we see Matt, still in full Daredevil regalia, wrap a chain around Sowande’s neck. He demands to know what The Hand did to Elektra. Sowande replies that Elektra’s body was merely a vessel, waiting to serve its purpose. She belongs to The Hand now. Mysticism at its finest! Matt points out that Alexandra failed – Elektra still remembers him. So, is she really an empty vessel? Sowande then retorts with a stinger: Elektra died in his arms. Matt reaches his breaking point and knocks Sowande unconscious. Stick tells him it’s high time he came clean to the rest of the Defenders regarding his connection to Black Sky.

Meanwhile, the remaining “fingers” of The Hand are discussing Matt’s relationship with Elektra, and his stake in returning to the fight. Murakami, Madame Gao and Bakuto all agree that Alexandra may have lost sight of their true purpose, and she is biased when it comes to Elektra. Alexandra is merely afraid of dying. Since Elektra has failed them, they decide to craft their next plan without Alexandra or Black Sky’s involvement. Uh oh. Looks like The Hand is breaking apart. 

Pictured: Sigourney Weaver

Then, Matt confesses what he’s been hiding in terms of his relationship with Elektra. The others, of course, see this as a weak spot – Matt’s judgement is clouded in this area. They all realize she’s one of The Hand and must be eliminated, but Matt doesn’t feel that way. Suddenly, Sowande breaks free from his restraints and grabs Danny, pushing a blade against his throat. He now has the Immortal Iron Fist, the one person The Hand desperately needs in their quest for life. Well, not on Stick’s watch! Our favorite mentor nonchalantly slices Sowande’s head off. One finger down, four to go. 

Meanwhile, Alexandra goes to Elektra’s room in search of her, but finds it empty. We see Elektra standing on the rooftop, observing Manhattan all around her. She finds her way to Matt’s loft. Elektra takes everything in, observing it all. Remembering? Possibly. She opens the door to his bedroom and clambers into Matt’s bed. Then, she closes her eyes. 


This episode of The Defenders gave us some killer fight scenes! Not to mention, it was massively cool seeing all of our Netflix Marvel worlds collide at the police station. Foggy, Karen, Misty, Colleen, Claire, Trish and Malcolm all in one room? My mind may have exploded. Elektra definitely remembers Matt, you guys. Nobody just randomly ends up in their former lover’s loft after having their memories erased and climbs into their bed, while claiming they don’t know said former lover. Everyone is slowly turning on Alexandra, which may work in the favor of our Defenders. 

Do you think Alexandra will be relegated in her position within The Hand? Will Matt be able to save Elektra in time, before The Hand consumes her? How long before the enemies of our heroes discover their loved ones are hiding at the police station? Will our Defenders at least pay that poor restaurant owner for the damages they’ve incurred? We’ve got three episodes left to find out!

The Defenders is now streaming on Netflix. 

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