We live in a golden age of Superhero media, and it’s going to get even more golden-ier soon. Three new Marvel properties have been announced as Netflix series (though it’s technically just a rumor): Ghost Rider, Blade, and Moon Knight.
You’re likely familiar with Blade, the half-human, half-vampire (also known as a “dhampir”) vampire hunter who had a series of movies in the late nineties and early 2000’s. While not universally loved, they did well at the box office and currently possess a cult following. High action and fantasy danger would be a welcome addition to the Marvel oeuvre, running alongside the supernatural elements of the Daredevil series, and could do very well in a Netflix lineup.
When Johnny Blaze, a stuntman, sold his soul to the devil he was transformed into the spirit of vengeance, a man with a flaming skull who rides a hellfire-powered motorcycle. Previous played by Nicholas Cage in two movies (released in 2007 and 2011 to…mixed reviews), the rights for the franchise reverted to Marvel in 2013.
You may remember Moon Knight from the Character Corner we did some time ago, but if not, now is a great time to become acquainted to this little-known character. With the spirit of an Egyptian deity residing inside him, Marc Spector gains incredible speed, strength, and durability as the moon grows brighter. However, the deity—Khonshu—residing in Moon Knight gives him what many would call dissociative identity disorder, making him hear voices, see things not there, and have entire conversations with figments of his imagination.
Again, so far Marvel and Netflix have made no official announcement; these are just rumors, though we hope them to be true. There is no information about release dates, actors, or even project leads, so we must be patient. We do know the Luke Cage series will debut September 30th, but no other dates have been mentioned.
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Releasing all at once on Nov 20th, Jessica Jones is the second Netflix-Marvel creation (the first being Daredevil, of course). The series, spanning thirteen episodes, will play out much like the comic book series Alias. Today, we’ll take a look at the classic Marvel character, her painful past, and her connection to the enigmatic Purple Man – played by David Tennant in the Netflix series.
Jessica Jones (Originally introduced as Jessica Campbell) went to school with Peter Parker AKA Spider-Man, apparently witnessing the spider bite resulting in Peter’s powers. While riding in the car with her family, they were struck by a military convoy carrying radioactive chemicals. Her family was killed and Jessica fell into a deep coma, recovering only after several months. The time she re-awoke coincided with the Fantastic Four’s battle against Galactus, during which heavy amounts of cosmic radiation were released.
Adopted by Mr. and Mrs. Jones after spending time in an orphanage, Jessica discovered she possessed numerous abilities: strength, durability, and flight. She was enrolled at Midtown high but ostracized by her classmates except for Peter Parker, whom she falsely believed only pitied her. She lashed out at him and flew away, only to lose control and crash into the Hudson River, eventually rescued by Thor.
After witnessing a fight between Spider-Man and Sandman, she felt urged to use her powers to help others. She named herself “Jewel,” and became a super heroine, but her career was less than stellar. While simply trying out her powers, she crash-landed on Scorpion while he was robbing a Laundromat, stunning him enough to be apprehended.
Sometime later, she came upon a fistfight in a restaurant, discovering Zebediah Killgrave – AKA the Purple Man – had demanded the men fight. Killgrave overpowered Jessica using his pheromone-based mind control, telling her to take care of the police while he finished his meal . . . among other things. She was captured by the Purple Man and kept prisoner for eight months, eventually sent to attack Daredevil due to the Purple Man’s rage. Once out of range of his pheromones, Jessica began to reclaim some semblance of control, though still focused on her mission. She ended up attacking the Scarlet Witch simply because she wore red like Daredevil, but after the first hit she regained control and was nearly killed by the Vision and Iron Man.
Jean Grey of the X-Men helped Jessica wake up from another coma, and after a period of recovery became a violent, hardened vigilante known as Knightress, bitter about her time spent under the Purple Man’s control. She broke up a crime meeting between the Owl and a Mafioso, meeting Luke Cage for the first time (whom she would later marry). One of the thugs at the meeting had brought his children, and Jessica ended up looking after them for the night after revealing her identity to the police. Luke Cage later joined her, and the two talked long into the night.
She soon retired from the superhero life, becoming a detective at the firm Alias Investigations, specializing in super hero activity. After a number of interesting investigations, some involving characters like Captain America, Spider-Man, Daredevil, and more, Jessica is alerted to the presence of the Purple Man, who again turns her world upside down.
It’s probable this is the timeline where the Netflix series will pick up, though details are sparse. Tennant’s Purple Man promises to be a chilling character, Krysten Ritter (Jane Margolis from Breaking Bad) looks to stun as the titular character, and Mike Colter (whose biggest role is likely boxer Big Willie Little in the film Million Dollar Baby) will appear as Luke Cage, setting up his own Netflix series.
We hope you’ve enjoyed a rundown of Jessica Jones! Come back next week for more fun fan superhero information!
Today Netflix released all thirteen episodes of the Marvel television series Daredevil, staring Charlie Cox as Daredevil, Vincent D’Onofrio as the villainous Kingpin, Elden Henson as Daredevil’s law-partner Foggy Nelson, Deborah Ann Woll as Karen Page, and Rosario Dawson as Claire Temple, a nurse and new character. On the Character Corner this week we’ll take a look at the classic Daredevil story.
Matt Murdock was raised by his father Jack, a boxer and a man that insisted Matt do better in life than he had. This prompted a lifetime of study instead of play, earning Matt the nickname “Daredevil” from the other children. Unbeknownst to them, the boy regularly exercised in his father’s gym. While still young, Matt saw a blind man walking across the street in front of an oncoming truck. Matt ran to the man and pushed him out of the way, and the truck swerved, releasing a radioactive isotope that struck Matt in the eyes, blinding him – this isotope, in-universe, is also the material that mutated the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. However, he quickly realized his other senses had become super-humanly strong, and gave him radar of sorts that was able to create a picture of his surroundings.
Following this incident, Matt would receive training from a ninja master named Stick. He was able to hone his abilities and study acrobatic arts. At the same time, Matt’s father worked with a crooked fight promoter named Fixer to become a rising heavyweight boxer. Fixer set Jack up to take a dive, which Jack refused to do. He was found and killed by Fixer’s gang, urging an enraged Matt to search out the killers. A prostitute was killed in the melee thanks to Matt’s actions, and Stick refused to train him further due to his actions.
Matt Murdock, able to get into Columbia law school as an orphan, met and fell in love with Elektra Natchios, the daughter of a Greek ambassador. After her father was accidentally killed, she retreated from the world, and Matt. After graduating and joining a law firm, Matt later missed an appointment while saving the life of a young girl, and was fired. He and his friend Foggy Nelson opened a law firm, and Matt made a yellow-and-black daredevil outfit out of his father’s old boxing uniform, committing himself to the Daredevil name.
Daredevil found success both as a lawyer and a crime-fighter, working to clean up the Hell’s Kitchen area of Manhattan. He fought alongside Spider-Man and the Fantastic Four frequently, and battled the Atlantean Sub-Mariner, a difficult test of his abilities. He moved to San Francisco after entering a relationship with the Black Widow, but the relationship didn’t last and he returned to Manhattan.
Shortly thereafter, Matt Murdock was reunited with his love Elektra, though under the worst circumstances. She had become an assassin, trained by the evil and violent cult called the Hand. She had left the hand, but remained cold and angry, until she was murdered by the violent killer Bullseye, said to be the world’s deadliest assassin himself. She was brought back to life by magic, and the love Matt Murdock had for her. Her spirit was cleansed, and she retreated to live with a more heroic ninja clan.
Daredevil’s adventures were many and varied, involving murder, betrayal, having his identity revealed, and even being sent to prison by the FBI for his actions. After defeating his longtime rival Kingpin, his mental state began to deteriorate. The hero Iron Fist impersonated him, he believed his friend Foggy was killed, and Vanessa Fisk, wife of Kingpin, helped him regain his life by framing the FBI director that had him sent to prison. He became the leader of the Hand, moved to New Mexico to escape his past, and nearly gave up being a hero at all, after believing he had done little more than get his friends and loved ones hurt. The latest adventure was a tense battle against Iron Man, after Tony Stark began charging for Extremis, a chemical that causes changes in the human body. Iron Man removed the memory of the battle once it was finished, leaving Daredevil none the wiser. As of now, Matt Murdock resides in San Francisco once more.
Daredevil was a man of great morals – which influenced his decision to become a lawyer — but prone to anger. If pushed, he won’t hesitate to cripple or even kill dangerous enemies. He also suffers from depression, which can affect his judgement. His super-powered extra-sensory abilities, along with his great strength and agility, make him a formidable foe. He can even tell if a person is lying by listening to their heartbeat and breathing. While his powerful senses help him fight, they can become overloaded quickly thanks to strong smells or very loud noises.
Stan Lee has stated that Daredevil’s radar sense is “better” than Spider-Man’s Spider-Sense. A 2003 live-action movie starring Ben Affleck failed to gain acclaim, but the recently-released Netflix series is seen as a return to glory.
We hope you’ve enjoyed this Character Corner; come back next week for more fun fan superhero information!