From the studio that brought us both seasons of Daredevil, Jessica Jones, Luke Cage, and that one guy with the fist, Netflix released the trailer of its latest superhero show: Marvel’s The Defenders. It’s the superhero team up that many loved in The Avengers, but for the small screen…and with a grumpier cast of characters.
What I loved
It was great seeing Misty Knight, and Jessica Jones interact – two detectives, one handcuffed – especially in a world (and genre) dominated by men. Matt Murdock is at his best when he’s practicing the law, and Jessica will give him plenty of opportunities to do that.
Claire is the Sam Jackson aka Nick Fury of the Netflix universe! That’s neat. I only watched the first episode of Luke Cage because I was one of the few people who didn’t like it, and Iron Fist‘s first episode was incredibly boring as I expected. However, Claire was in both, and I assume she’s as lovely as she was in Jessica Jones and Daredevil. Claire is all of us.
What’s even better than Danny Rand getting punched in the face is Matt getting kicked in the chest by Elektra. She’s back! I think the character got dealt a bad hand in how she was used and depicted, but she’s somehow flourished in spite of that, and is a favourite character of mine.
Will she be treated better this time of around? I’m not holding my breath especially when The Defenders brings with it not just four superheroes, but their respective baggage as well.
What I’m worried about
Speaking of baggage, both Daredevil, and Iron Fist have been criticized for their overwhelming use of Asian characters as bad guys to be punched by white heroes. It doesn’t help that Danny Rand aka Iron Fist is played by a white actor even though casting an Asian-American actor would have upended the racist origins of the character.
The white saviour trope doesn’t end there! Stick is back as the leader of the very righteous group, The Chaste, who vowed to protect the world from The (very bad) Hand. So you can understand my worried face when I saw Sigourney Weaver’s character looking a bit like someone giving The Hand orders like a boss would. Honestly, having a ton of Asian bodies to punch through sounds a bit like Daredevil seasons 1 and 2.
Also: How dare Danny refer to Jessica as “whatever it is you are”. Whatever it is YOU are, Danny. Jessica has super strength! That’s my number one superpower pick.
A ton of friends have already mentioned this on Twitter, but I think fans have noticed too.
Overall, I hope the show doesn’t fall into the narrative potholes of its predecessors. Will I watch it? Probably. I’m mostly invested in Elektra and how her role will transform post-resurrection. Time will tell and we have a bit more before the show appears on Netflix this summer.