Welcome to VOCIFERY, my attempt to re-watch every piece of media in the Marvel Cinematic Universe – every movie, every television series, every one-shot, every web series, and every tie-in comic book, using the Wikipedia entry on the MCU as a guide, before the release of Avengers 4 in May 2019. Join me as I write my thoughts about what I’m seeing, as I see it!
Also, spoilers follow – if you’re worried about that kind of thing, view before reading.
Jessica Jones: Season 1 Episodes 07-13 (2015)
I mean, the main problem with the back half of Jessica Jones is fairly simple – and it’s two-fold.
First, there just isn’t enough story here to sustain thirteen episodes and, as a result, the season just keeps going round in a loop – Jessica gets close to Kilgrave, then he gets away in some horrific act in a restaurant or a nightclub, then Jessica gets close to him again, and then he manages to escape again in some horrific act in a public park or a hospital.
And so it goes until the final episode, when Jessica gets close to him and finishes him off for … good? Who knows; I haven’t watched Season Two yet, but he sure seems like he’s dead by the end of the season.
It’s a shame really. Even with the over-long season and the relative lack of story to fill it, Jessica Jones is probably my favourite of the four individual hero shows – it oozes with style, and both Ritter and Tennant are exceptional in their leading roles.
I’ve probably said this already, but this is really the main problem with all of these Marvel/Netflix shows: the individual series are all thirteen episodes in length and would have been better at just eight episodes – meanwhile, The Defenders clocked in at just eight episodes and won’t be coming back for a second season. You wonder what the thinking is, really.
The second problem is that the show works best when Tennant is featured front and centre. The exploits of Kilgrave, the so-called “Purple Man’ from the comics who can control minds, are simultaneously horrifying and engrossing – and the fact that they give an opportunity for the writers to get creative, and must be relatively cheap to film, means that they could have featured much more than they did.
It also means that all the time spent with police officer Will (played by Wil Traval), including the setup that he is a supervillain in his own right, and all the time spent with Malcolm and Robyn, and that random episode where Trish’s Mum shows up (and all the flashbacks) – it all just feels like wasted time, away from any portion of the story that entertains.
I don’t really have much more to say than that. The elements of the show that worked well in the early going still work – Ritter and Tennant continue to be stellar, and Tennant’s Kilgrave is easily one of the most interesting villains in the entire Marvel Cinematic Universe. But the show over-reached; there was too much space and not enough story.
Next: Agents Of SHIELD: S3 Eps 09-10!