Editors' Choice

The Netflix Marvel Universe

Steve Porter / November 23, 2016

It’s no secret that Marvel Studios’ partnership with Disney has provided them with a trail of box office smashes for nearly a decade now (keep an eye out because we’ll be covering the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) in an upcoming article, along with a piece looking at the entirely separate television universe). However, it seems Marvel has set their sights even higher than just being the top dog when it comes to films. Below you will find a comprehensive list of all the current series available on Netflix as well as those that will be available in the coming years. Things are happening – big, glorious, nerdy things for comic book loving people.  

Daredevil

 

 

Netflix launched its first Marvel series, Daredevil, on April 10th, 2016, with 13 episodes. The series has been a hit with a current rating of 8.8 out of 10 from nearly 230,000 votes on IMDB. The series was created by Drew Goddard (Buffy, Alias, Lost, World War Z) and is based on the comic by Stan Lee and Bill Everett. The series follows lawyer Matt Murdock (Charlie Cox), a young man blinded as a child from a chemical spill who has developed extraordinary senses as a result of the accident. He uses these heightened senses in the courtroom to help him win and at night he uses the same abilities to fight crime. Over the course of his nightly adventures, he begins to uncover the intricacies of the criminal underworld and begins to hunt for the man in charge, Wilson Fisk (Vincent D’Onofrio).

 

In the show’s second season, Murdock is introduced to Frank Castle, or how he’s better known to those he exacts justice on, The Punisher (Jon Bernthal). Castle suffered a terrible loss and it turned him into a vigilante crime fighter on a path of vengeance. Along with the Punisher, Murdock is reintroduced to his estranged love interest Elektra Natchios (Elodie Yung). We also learn of Murdock’s super hero training with his mentor, another blind man known only as Stick.

 

The series has a number of notable faces such as Rosario Dawson (Seven Pounds), Elden Henson (The Mighty Ducks), Deborah Ann Woll (True Blood), and Royce Johnson (Demolition)

 

The third season of the series was officially announced in July with a cryptic teaser trailer that you can watch here . The downside here is that with The Defenders currently in production and The Punisher getting his own show, the likelihood that we will see the third season won’t be anytime before the summer of 2017.

 

Jessica Jones

 

 

Jessica Jones is an action-detective-neo-noir-psychological-thriller about a female superhero. Now try saying that in one breath! It was the second series released by Marvel via Netflix on November 20th, 2015, with 13 episodes. The series, like its predecessor, was well received and very much deserves its 8.2 out of 10 from over 100,000 votes on IMDB. The series was created by Melissa Rosenberg (Dexter, The OC) and is based on the original comics by Brian Michael Bendis and Michael Gaydos.

 

The series follows Jessica Jones (Krysten Ritter) a woman who is a former superhero that decides to open her own detective agency. Jones lost her family when she was a child on her way to Disney World. Her father worked for Tony Stark and received tickets to the park as a gift when the car she was in collided with a military convoy carrying radioactive chemicals. The resulting accident left her with abilities such as superhuman strength, flight, and the ability to block mind control.

 

Season 1 sees Jones and her agency solving cases involving others with strange abilities across New York City. The season’s overarching antagonist is the vile “Purple Man” or Kilgrave played effectively by David Tennant (Dr. Freaking Who people come on!), who is obsessed with Jones. The show also introduces us to fellow superhero and MCU member Luke Cage. Jones and Cage have a fling in season one and in the comic and they end up getting married. Let’s see if Netflix stays true to the canon.

 

It was recently announced that Season 2 of the series will have all of its 13 episodes directed exclusively by women. Now, that’s pretty cool if you ask us. There has yet to be an announcement in regards to when season two of the show will be released, but the chances are good that it will end up being some time after the release of The Defenders.

 

Luke Cage

 

 

Luke Cage is the latest instalment of the ongoing franchise of Marvel properties on the popular streaming platform. Netflix premiered all 13 episodes of it’s first season on September 30th, 2016. Netflix’s Luke Cage is a superhero action-drama with heavy undertones of Neo-Blaxploitation and a little bit of Neo-Western lightly sprinkled throughout. The show was created by Cheo Hodari Coker (Southland, Almost Human) and is based on the comic/characters created by Archie Goodwin, George Tuska, Roy Thomas, and John Romita Sr.

 

Mike Colter (Halo: Nightfall, Agent X) stars as Luke Cage, a man who grew up in Harlem and was sent to prison after being wrongly accused of a crime. While there, Cage takes part in a dodgy bare-knuckle fight ring. After angering the powers that be, he’s assaulted by rival prisoners and left for dead. The only way to save him is to have him undergo a risky experimental procedure. This procedure is sabotaged and Luke is given super strength and almost indestructible skin as a result. Cage breaks out of prison and goes back to the world he knows and attempts to lay low.  Luke’s good heart and love for his community mean that when the neighborhood’s criminal elements step up their game, he must do the same. Cage becomes a superhero for hire.

 

The show boasts of a very respectable 8.0 rating on IMDB from nearly 35,000 members. The cast is chock full of memorable faces such as Rosario Dawson (7 Pounds) as her recurring character “Claire Temple”  from both Daredevil and Jessica Jones. Dawson is even listed as appearing in 5 episodes of the upcoming Defenders series as well. Then we have Simone Missick (Wayward Pines) playing Misty Knight, an NYPD cop assigned to Cage’s neighborhood. Next up is Theo Rossi (Sons Of Anarchy) playing Herman “Shades” Alvarez, a shady henchmen that works with the neighborhood’s crime lord. There’s Alfre Woodard (12 Years A Slave, Trueblood) as the corrupt politician, Mariah Dillard, and finally, there’s Mahershala Ali as the shows antagonist Cornell “Cottonmouth” Stokes.

 

There’s no news regarding season 2 of the show at the time of writing this article, but fans can rest assured knowing Luke will be back in The Defenders and seeing as how he’s the love interest in Jessica Jones, it’s more than likely that he will appear in season 2 of that show as well!

 

Iron Fist

 

 

Marvel’s Iron Fist is the next series to be released on Netflix. It’s an action-adventure superhero story with elements of mystery, fiction, and martial arts lore. The show was developed by Scott Buck and is based on the comic and characters created by Roy Thomas and Gil Kane.

 

The series follows Daniel Rand, played by Finn Jones (Game of thrones, Hollyoaks Later), a young man who after years of being MIA, returns home to New York and tries to reconnect with the friends and family he left behind. While away, Rand was gifted with incredible martial arts talents and a mysterious mystical force known only as “The Iron Fist.” Rand uses his abilities to combat the seedy criminal underworld of New York. Sound familiar? Bet there’s going to be an epic hallway fight. (Kidding!) If they do though, they only keep repeating themselves because fans love it. Even though we’ve seen it before, the running “gags” get eaten up. So let’s have it Netflix, we want to see the longest one take fight in history!

 

The series also stars Jessica Henwick (Game Of Thrones) as Colleen Wing, Jessica Stroup (Jack Reacher: Never Go Back) as Joy Meachum , Lewis Tan (Mortal Kombat – Generations/ Legacy) as Zhou Cheng and Toby Nichols as a young Daniel Rand.

 

Iron Fist is set to premier on March 17th, 2017. Who else is beyond excited?

 

The Defenders

 

 

Here it is! The culmination of everything Marvel Television, ABC studios, and Netflix have been working towards. The series sees Daredevil (Charlie Cox), Jessica Jones (Krysten Ritter), Luke Cage (Mike Colter) and The Iron Fist (Finn Jones) uniting to fight crime and defend the people of New York.

 

The Defenders was developed by Douglas Petrie and Marco Ramirez and is based on the comic and characters created by Roy Thomas and Ross Andru. Filming of the show began in October alongside production of The Punisher. The Defenders’ working title was “Group Therapy”.  

 

The series’ storyline is a slight deviation from the comic canon where originally The Defenders were formed by The Incredible Hulk, Doctor Strange and Namor the Sub-Mariner. Netflix’s version of  The Defenders is actually closer to a comic series titled “Heroes for Hire” which is about a crime fighting team formed by Luke Cage and Iron Fist.

 

This will be the first show from Netflix and Marvel/ABC Studios that is not going to be 13, 60-minute episodes. Instead we’re getting 8, 60-min episodes. An exact release date for the series has yet to be announced, but at least we have a year, and that’s 2017. Looks like it’s going to be a busy year for Marvel.

The Punisher

 

 

Netflix’s The Punisher is the last in the line of Marvel shows set to be released. The series was created by Steve Lightfoot (Hannibal, Camelot) and is based on the comic and characters created by Gerry Conway and John Romita, Sr.  

 

There’s no doubt that Jon Bernthal and his portrayal of the tormented vigilante crime fighter Frank “The Punisher” Castle during season 2 of Daredevil had a tremendous impact with audiences. Some would venture to say that he was the highlight of the season and the lone reason fans continued to watch.

 

Aside from Mr. Bernthal, the show will also star Jason R. Moore (The Sorcerer’s Apprentice) as Curtis Hoyle, Ebon Moss-Bachrach (Girls) and David Lieberman, Michael Nathanson (The Knick) as Sam Stein, Amber Rose Revah (Indian Summers) as Dinah Madani, Daniel Weber (Teenage Kicks) as Lewis Walcott, and Deborah Ann Woll (True Blood) as her recurring character Karen Page.

 

In April 2016, Marvel and Netflix requested 13 episodes of the show and filming started on the 3rd of October, 2016, in Brooklyn, New York. To deter fans and looky-loo’s, the production has been codenamed “Crime”. Fans wait with baited breath for the grizzled crime fighter to return to us sometime in 2017 and exact punishment on those who deserve it the most.

 

Featured image via: Vulture