Apparently dying means nothing in The Defenders. The new Marvel superhero team-up series is bringing back characters we've already seen killed in the lead-up shows left and right, and that includes the shocking return of one notable figure from Iron Fist. Spoiler alert: This post will discuss details from the first five episodes of The Defenders. If you've already seen Episode 5, then you're good to read on. Our heroes and viewers alike were shocked to discover Iron Fist's rival Bakuto is alive in The Defenders, despite being killed at the end of Iron Fist.
So, how is Bakuto alive? Well, that question actually isn't too confusing to people who have been following the Defenders lead-up series. In Iron Fist, we learn that Bakuto is a member of the evil organization known as The Hand, a class of mystical ninjas we've seen pop up in both Iron Fist and Daredevil. In Episode 4 of The Defenders, Stick reveals Bakuto is not just any member of The Hand, but one of the five most powerful leaders of the organization, known as the five fingers. The Hand's most formidable ability is their power to resurrect the dead, and since Bakuto is one of the group's leaders, of course they used this ability to bring him back to life.
Bakuto is actually the second major character we've seen The Hand bring back to life in The Defenders. At the very beginning of the series, another finger of The Hand, Sigourney Weaver's Alexandra, conducts the ritual to resurrect Elektra, who was killed at the end of Daredevil. But Elektra comes back without memory of her past life, and returns as Black Sky, The Hand's weapon against the Defenders.
Earlier, we saw The Hand resurrect another character in Daredevil: the formidable ninja warrior Nobu. Stick was able to kill Nobu for good by cutting off his head, seemingly the only way to prevent The Hand from performing their resurrection ritual.
Now that Bakuto is back, all five fingers of The Hand are together and working to destroy the Defenders. So yeah, that's not great...