Prediction: Jessica Jones
Shiri: Only three more days. Only three more days. Damn it, I can’t believe I have to work this weekend.
I was indifferent about Daredevil until the opening moments of the first episode. Why? Not sure. Why did I decide to watch? All of my friends were doing it. And no, Mom, I wouldn’t jump off a building if all of my friends were doing it,but my friends generally have pretty rad taste in comic book properties, or are at least willing to admit when they’re hate watching something with aplomb (looking at you any solo Wolverine flick). I was also very quickly sold and thrilled to discover myself in the wrong (not usually a thing I’m excited about, but in this case, yes). I’ve watched the whole run through three times and the Nelson v. Murdock episode more times than I’m willing to admit.
Foregone, then, that Jessica Jones is going to be good.
I think, given Daredevil‘s intense awesomeness when Netflix was still feeling out the boundaries, Jessica Jones is going to be phenomenal.
It is also going to be a much tougher watch psychologically. Daredevil certainly had moments that were physically painful and insanely violent, but the bad guys are just that: bad guys. Kilgrave, as portrayed by David Tennant, is something else entirely and the pain he causes his victims, including Jessica, is at a whole other, terrifying level.
It’s an important story. The story of a woman who has decided to survive (if not, perhaps, in the most healthy way possible) but is haunted by her past as so many survivors of abuse must be. I would urge those for whom this might be a trigger to watch with caution and to stop if it proves too much. I also think that feeling a bit of discomfort during this series could be a good thing (discomfort, not upset, two very different things). If you’re a little uncomfortable, it means you get it. It means you get what, on a human level, a real level, this type of manipulation does to people and why it is never, ever, ever, ever okay.
Why it should never, ever, ever, ever be ignored.
That said, Jessica makes it through. Scarred, but she finds a life and she finds love, and she fights back in a thousand little ways along with the obvious ones. She is the kind of hero we need.
Luke: Daredevil sort of set the bar pretty high, so I am glad they decided to go after the strongest story in the Netflix stable. The books that are the basis for the Marvel properties that have ended up on Netflix have a history related to the ‘Marvel Knights’ and MAX imprints. They both were attempts to make Marvel more relevant and have helped lay the foundation that the current Marvel revival is built on. So, it is not too surprising that they would use these characters for the next phase of the Marvel domination of all media. I say that somewhat facetiously, but not completely. Marvel dominates movies, and yes, Star Wars will rule all, for a bit, but at the end of the day I don’t know if it will bring in more than the Marvel movies all together did.
But, let us come back to just Jessica. A perfect character to follow Daredevil. Maybe even better, because in some ways Jessica Jones in the Alias comic is the foundation for the Marvel cinematic universe. Jessica is a detective who started out in a dark reflection of the Marvel Comic Book Universe, one that eventually was retconned (retroactive continuity, when in a comic an inconsistency or outright paradox is written away by a later book or writer) into the normal one. That darker universe, one where superheroes are more ‘real’ or at least less four-color-in-your-face than original Marvel universe, was perfect for Jessica. A burned out detective who worked at the intersection of superpowers and normal people. One who only overtime did we discover was a broken superhero.
And this is my only worry about the series, it took more than one year to build up a Jessica Jones who everyone loved and wanted to see more of before they revealed her history as a superhero and how Purpleman aka Killgrave broke her. I hope they give her some room to breathe before they show us how broken she is, because Jessica is a great character who I hope lasts more than one series.