If you’ve watched Daredevil on Netflix, like so many others, you were probably amazed and more than impressed with how Netflix and Marvel managed to take a character marred by a movie starring Ben Affleck and pulled off a masterpiece. Reviewers were stunned when Guardians of the Galaxy managed to take unknown characters and make them entertaining and mainstream. People even wondered if they could pull it off again, and they did it twice more with Daredevil and Ant-Man. However, some wondered if Marvel could take a character that even many comic readers didn’t know and at the same time have a female lead that rivaled the males? After watching Jessica Jones the answer is YES without hesitation.
As we’re currently living in superhero TV/Film era you’d think the genre has peaked. Some would say we’ve seen it all at this point minus a minority or female lead of course. We’ve been led to believe that we’d have to wait a couple years to get proper female or minority lead characters from either DC or Marvel. We were wrong. DC recently launched Supergirl on CBS to mixed reviews. However, most agree that it was a good first attempt at a female hero lead and is strong enough to compete with The Flash, Arrow, Agents of Shield, and Gotham. All great shows all eclipsed by Daredevil.
Jessica Jones is now on the scene and has eclipsed them all. Jessica Jones has raised the bar and set the standard for the genre a title easily given to Daredevil previously. Masterful writing, acting, and cinematography accomplishes so much that mere words only scratch the surface of it’s brilliance. Adapted from a little known comic and character, the show manages to weave complex and realistic narratives into a show about a woman who has super strength and can sorta fly. Little if any of what you’d expect is in this show. There’s no playing down the action or silly plot lines and dialogue designed to remind you that Jessica is a girl. There is no damsel in distress routines either. What you get is a tortured soul in a world that is realistic, gritty, and makes no apologizes. Although Daredevil was dark and his world foreboding literally in every shot, kinda like a darker Gotham, Jessica though often shot in bright, sunny, light filled areas, manages to be even more dark.
Unlike Jessica when fighting, the show pulls no punches. The show serves up a giant helping of realness and is unapologetic about it. Topics ranging from sex, abortion, sexual assault, drug abuse, mental illness, and more are nuanced and given the attention to detail they deserve. The cast is brilliant in there portrayals as well. Some faces are very familiar to fans of the Matrix, Dr. Who, Halo, and other media, others not so much, but all drew you in and made you feel like you were in the room. Jessica Jones is what superhero films and TV should be hands down. This show is an evolution of what we thought the genre should be and if Netflix and Marvel keep this pace, we may see the era of PG-13 big budget oversimplified cartoonish superhero films go away. Fans of comics have always known that what make them so great is that they can take extraordinary people and make them relatable in an unapologetic world. Jessica Jones does all that without breaking a sweat. The main characters, villain, and everyone else are layered 3 dimensional people and you’d be hard pressed to take your eyes off the screen. What Jessica Jones manages to do that no other superhero film or TV show has been able to do to date is make the audience believe that it’s possible to live in a world where these characters exist. To be able to take super powered beings off the pages of a comic and make them realistic in every way is a feat in of itself and somehow it doesn’t even look like everyone involved with Jessica Jones even had to try. They made it look effortless.
A compelling narrative, a great, complex, and even sympathetic villain, steamy and complex relationships, and the handling of divisive issues with attention to detail, respect, and grace, are all amazing reasons why Jessica Jones is a much watch show whether you’re a fan of the genre or not. Of course this is Marvel so also expect plenty of Easter Eggs and tie ins to other Marvel characters, shows, movies, and upcoming shows as well. Stop reading this and go watch it now!