You probably hadn’t heard of Jessica Jones until Netflix signed Alias, the comic book series she stars in, up for another of their Marvel creations following the success of Daredevil (read our review of the first season here). But as the teaser trailer stated before the first season was released on Friday, “It’s time the world knew her name”, and the world sure does now.
Much like the Alias comic book series, we join Jessica after she’s hung up her superhero costume and retired into the role of a private eye. Within this role, she uses her super strength and questionable flight abilities to help street crime victims, leaving all of the extra terrestrial shenanigans to the Avengers.
Jessica (Krysten Ritter) is a whiskey swigging, slick talking, sexually liberated lone wolf, but we quickly realise that this could all be part of an emotional barricade as her life starts to unfold before our eyes. She’s not the only superhero working on her street level, however, as she’s about to run into another whilst having already crashed and burned at the hands of Kilgrave (David Tennant). On the surface, he’s an erudite, charming, handsome Brit in a well-tailored purple suit, yet he has the power to control minds, and he’s already ruined Jessica’s life with this ability before she managed to escape his grasp. Now Kilgrave is back, and it lingers whether Jessica can stay away from him, or if she’ll be forced into using her powers for evil causes at his control.
Much like Alias, one of Marvel’s MAX comics containing R rated content, Jessica Jones follows the same path with explicit sex, drug use and throat slitting. This is a dark turn for Marvel but it really, really works; it’s a gritty new ground and if the producers had decided to limit the series to a family friendly rating, it wouldn’t have worked. However, coincidently, the series still doesn’t delve into some of the deepest, darkest corners of the comic, mostly involving Kilgrave and Jessica’s sickeningly sinister past.
The characters in Jessica Jones are all deep and complex; everyone you meet gains some form of origin, giving more depth and meaning to their character and subsequent actions, giving the audience to latch onto each and every soul introduced. Surprisingly, even the evil Kilgrave gains the slightest of sympathy as you discover the extent of his past.
The characters are not only written and cast perfectly, but David Tennant’s portrayal of Kilgrave is simply mesmerising. We’ve seen him play evil before with characters such as Barty Crouch Jr. in Harry Potter, but Kilgrave is something else; he does unimaginable things to innocent people just to make his life a little easier. Tennant hits it right on the mark, mixing all the creepy, terrifying character traits of Kilgrave with the same charming English accent he donned playing The Doctor, so Doctor Who fans be warned as Kilgrave’s utterances might just ruin your life.
Netflix is ready and waiting for you to binge watch, so grab your popcorn and duvet, and prepare for an incredible 13 hours in the company of Jessica Jones!
What did you think to the first season of Jessica Jones?
Comment with your thoughts.
– Heather Thornton