I don’t think a lot of comic book fans know who Jessica Jones is. But after the extremely good first season of Daredevil, I’m better a lot of people, both comic and non-comic book fans, scavenged and scoured the Interwebs trying to find all the details about the character. While they probably found out a lot about the character and her history, I’m betting no one expected Marvel’s Jessica Jones to be this good!
Like Daredevil before it, all of Marvel’s Jessica Jones has been released on the same day last month. But I was only able to watch the entire season just recently. I successfully managed to avoid a lot of massive spoilers until I did. So, as a sort of thank you to the Internet, even though its been out for over a month now, this review will also be SPOILER FREE!
The show focuses on the titular character. Jessica Jones has a secret: she actually has superpowers. But, unlike other heroes and villains we’ve seen in the Marvel Universe, Jessica prefers to keep her powers a secret. She runs a run down private investigations office out of her apartment called Alias Investigations. She mainly keeps to herself because of some traumatic experience, keeping only a few people at arm’s length. However, when a person from her past resurfaces, Jessica struggles to figure out what to so.
In a nutshell, the show is simply phenomenal! There are just so many things to like about the characters. The acting is pretty well done. The characters are mostly three-dimensional and well-written. The overall story is good and makes you want to see the next episode right away! After watching the entire thing, I totally get why Netflix is going the “we’ll release everything in one day” route. That’s because the show (and the fans) demand it that way!
One thing that really took me by surprise is that, even though Jessica Jones has superpowers, she rarely gets to use it in the show. You would think having superpowers would come in handy as Jessica does run Alias Investigations and her private eye work. But she mostly uses her brains and guile to get what she wants. She’ll go on the phone and pretend to be someone else to get the information she needs and I just thought it was brilliant that she doesn’t just strongarm or bully the information out of people. Oh, there are a few action scenes and fights where having superpowers comes in handy. But Jessica Jones main weapon is her mind, which I loved.
I mentioned how good the characters were in the show but a lot of it comes from how well the the actors performed. Krysten Ritter as Jessica Jones was actually a brilliant choice. Oh, she looks a little waif-ish but it just makes her just a little bit more badass when they reveal she has superpowers! Krysten Ritter also manages to pull off a really believable performance as a woman who is haunted by past traumas but tries to cover it us by pretending to be tough on the outside.
The other supporting characters also do a fantastic job as well. Rachel Taylor does a good job as Jessica’s adoptive sister and only real friend, Trish Walker. Mike Colter’s performance made me really want to watch the upcoming Luke Cage show since he does a great job of bringing the character to life. I also liked Wil Traval as Will Simpson, a cop who becomes Trish Walker’s love interest, for the most part. Even the really minor characters like Jessica’s neighbors Malcolm, Ruben and Robyn.
But the actor that steals the show and the hearts of the viewers has to be David Tennant as Kilgrave, the main antagonist of Marvel’s Jessica Jones. As much as you know what a vile human being he is, Kilgrave is just incredibly charming and witty and such a well written character, you can’t help but… like him. Oh, I would definitely be incredibly afraid of him, especially after you find out all of the things he’s done in the past and the frightening superpower he wields. But David Tennant just makes him just human enough so that you can understand and empathize with Kilgrave. That’s a testament to the man’s acting ability!
While the entire season is incredibly good, I do have some issues with it. For one, there are some episodes that I felt were written in to ensure they had 13 episodes. There were a couple of episodes I felt were fillers and could’ve been removed and it wouldn’t have interrupted the overall flow of the season. Also, there are a lot of times where Jessica just runs into a whole lot of bad luck! There are times when she simply has the upper hand and a handle on things and then, wham! Something happens or someone steps in and just spoils everything for her; this is especially true during the later episodes.
I also have to mention how “adult” the series is. Now, I don’t really have a problem with sex and violence on TV. But I did feel I have to warn people reading this about how much sex and violence Marvel’s Jessica Jones has! You thought the level of violence in Daredevil was crazy! This show puts it to shame! There’s no real nudity in the show but they do have a lot scenes where people are just doing the nasty! Like I said, I don’t have an issue with it but, seeing as this is part of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, some parents may be okay getting Marvel’ Jessica Jones as a “family” show. And then this happens…
Don’t say I didn’t warn you!
But the sex and violence makes sense in the world of Marvel’s Jessica Jones. The problems that Jessica Jones and most of the cast of characters have to deal with are more rooted in adult situations. Things like abuse and trauma are running themes in the show and it tries to depict how people have to deal with them in their day to day lives. It’s a lot deeper than all the superhero shows I’ve seen. I would have to say it dives into topics other serious shows shy away from. That’s one of the reasons why this show is so intriguing and something you want to binge watch. You want to see what happens next with these characters. Will the overcome their issues? Will they make the right choices even after being put through a terrible ordeal? You just want to know!
Overall, Marvel’s Jessica Jones is another runaway success for both Netflix and Marvel. Definitely a much watch for adults and people who can take on adult situations.