I first heard of Jessica Jones while trying to know more about Marvel Civil War. Let’s not get into that storyline and just focus on the second character who’s going to be featured in The Defenders mini-series. According to most people, Marvel has done an excellent job with Daredevil (Unfortunately, I haven’t found the time to watch it yet). The decision to release it on Netflix was probably a big help but it seems that a lot of fans are lauding the execution of the shows themselves. This I can confirm for Jessica Jones.
Everything works for Marvel and Netflix’s second project – the cast, the storytelling, and the action. David Tennant’s Kilgrave is easily one of, if not, the best Marvel Cinematic Universe villains. Too bad he was already killed off in the finale. But that’s expected as he would be hard to stop if they decided to keep him alive. His version of the Purple Man is even said to better than the comic book one. Krysten Ritter also did a great job as the titular character. In one of her interview, she told reporters that she really enjoyed portraying the bad-ass private investigator. We also got a glimpse of Luke Cage played by Michael Colter. They didn’t reveal too much of his background which is what we’re going to get with Power Man’s own series.
Another interesting portrayal was Carrie-Anne Moss’ Jeri Hogarth. In the comics, Hogarth is male. I guess that’s not a big deal with Marvel nowadays since even Thor has a female version. Anyway, what’s curious about Carrie-Anne’s character is that her firm has connections to Danny Rand. If you are not aware, he is Iron Fist who is the fourth Defender in the Marvel-Netflix line-up. We’ll have to wait for a while since Luke Cage’s series is still next. Going back to the lawyer, I don’t know if they purposely made her an unlikeable figure because that’s how I feel towards Jeri.
Regarding the subject matter for the whole season, it is quite disturbing which is the primary source of intrigue. In the story, Jessica was orphaned at a young age. Her family’s fun trip turned into tragedy when a truck containing dangerous chemicals collided with their car. Jessica’s parents and brother were instantly killed. She was then adopted by the mother of Patsy Walker, a child star, as a way to boost her popularity. Ms. Jones later finds out that she has gained superhuman strength and Patsy discovers her secret but chooses to hide it from her mom. Mrs. Walker can be brutal about ensuring her daughter’s career on TV and Jessica runs away with Patsy, who changes her name to Trish, to live on their own. Several years later, she meets Kilgrave and her life is never the same.
The Purple Man has the power to bend people’s wills. His mere suggestion makes others want to do his bidding. Because of her own gifts, Kilgrave enslaved Jessica Jones and you can just imagine the things he did with her. Fortunately, she became immune to his control after a tragic incident involving Luke Cage’s wife. She believed Kilgrave to be dead and decided to move on with her life as a private investigator establishing her very own agency, Alias Investigations. In one of her cases, though, she encounters Hope Shlottman who turns out to be another one of Kilgrave’s slaves. Jessica succeeds in rescuing Hope but she had been given instructions to kill her parents which she does. She lands in jail and Detective Jones makes it her personal mission to get Ms. Shlottman acquitted and make Kilgrave pay. The series progresses in a complicated cat and mouse chase with minor storylines running in the background – Jeri Hogarth’s divorce, weird neighbours, Luke Cage finding out about his wife’s killer, and Kilgrave’s own origin. Everything concludes with Jessica finally taking out the Purple Man even with heightened powers. There were several gruesome deaths in the thirteen episodes and that’s probably one of the reasons I won’t be watching the whole series again anytime soon. Maybe even ever.
I’m curious about what’s next for Ms. Jones, though, as they teased several things which could be used for next season. IGH, the company who owned the truck who smashed the Jones’ car, was revealed to be the same people who gave super-soldier pills to Will Simpson. Will is a character who Kilgrave manipulated to kill Trish. Jessica helps him override Kilgrave’s orders and he becomes friends then lovers with Ms. Walker. However, Mr. Simpson’s desire to get revenge on Kilgrave makes him overdose on the IGH pills and his judgement becomes clouded. Trish and Jessica stop him from killing Kilgrave and IGH recovers his body after they leave the Alias Investigations office. Will Simpson is also a character from the comics but, like the others, I don’t think his role will be identical to the comic books.
You don’t have to be a Marvel fanatic to watch this show. Having said that, this kind of show is not for everybody. Some imagery might be hard for some to wrap their head around. But the quality is certainly present in this production and I’ll be surprised if Netflix doesn’t announce that they’re renewing this for another season.