The MCU Ranked: ‘Jessica Jones’ (Season 2)
Ok, this has just come out so obviously spoilers everywhere. EVERYWHERE.
Showrunners: Melissa Rosenberg
Heroes: Jessica Jones (Krysten Ritter)
Villains/Support Cast: Trish “Patsy” Walker (Rachael Taylor), Malcolm Ducasse (Eka Darville), Jeri Hogarth (Carrie-Anne Moss), Alisa Jones (Janet McTeer), Pryce Cheng (Terry Chen), Inez Green (Leha Gibson), Oscar Arocho (J.R. Ramirez)
Cameos: Stan Lee is a bit more unmissable than usual having his face on the side of a bus. Seriously, he takes up half the screen. David Tennant and Wil Traval both reprise their season 1 roles as Kilgrave and Will Simpson. Elden Henson pops up as Foggy Nelson, maintaining the links between the Netflix universe.
Plot: Jessica Jones, private investigator, has achieved some notoriety as a super-powered detective. This brings some similarly enhanced clients to her door, which starts Jones down the path towards uncovering her own past.
Review: Jessica Jones was a worthy follow-up to the excellent Daredevil, even taking things a step forward by tackling for complex and pertinent issues. When it comes to the follow up series things get a bit trickier as Alias doesn’t have the same well known cast of characters to draw on for new villains. This is noteworthy because season 1 featured David Tennant as Kilgrave, The Purple Man, who was inarguably the most horrifying and interesting villain the MCU had seen until date.
Rather than trying to one-up Kilgrave the new season has done away with convention villains in their entirety, focusing instead on character building and thematic story lines. The new case, which concerns discovering where Jones got her powers and the reveal (SPOILERS, I WARNED YOU) that her mother is alive and also super-powered, gets into her head metaphorically as much as Kilgrave did literally. It also brings to the fore Jessica’s reliance on alcohol to get through the day the her inability to manage her anger, as her mother takes these issues to an extreme.
Jessica isn’t the only character who gets great development in this season. Her sister Trish is given a surprisingly dark arc to work through. She goes from a journalist wanting to be taken seriously and living in Jessica’s superpowered shadow to relapsing into drug addiction with some gruesome consequences. Jeri, the intense lawyer who worked with Jessica, has been diagnosed with a fatal illness and works through her own demons while protecting her legacy. Throughout all this Malcolm, Jessica’s recovering addict neighbour, moves between the characters as the often ignored voice of reason.
For a superhero show this second season is surprisingly low on set pieces and action sequences. There’s a couple of battles with Jessica’s mother, but there’s no knock-down, drag out fights. It’s very much an emotional and thematic story that keeps things street level.
What makes this the perfect adult orientated entry into the MCU is how well it handles its content. It deals with mature themes without being gratuitous. It’s deals with complex characters with being melodramatic. It’s a remarkably well crafted and a solid follow up to the original.
Credits Scene: None.
Most Notable Easter Egg: Remember that painting of Jessica done by love interest Oscar? That piece was by David Mack, who paints the covers for the comic series.
Coolest Moment: This might be a cop-out because he’s only a small part of the series but we CANNOT ignore David Tennant’s creepy as fuck Kilgrave returning to mess with Jessica’s mind.
THE MCU MASTER LIST
This is one of the harder ones to place because it’s so different in tone to the rest of the franchise. It gets a boost for the maturity of the story and tone, but the lack of spectacle makes it a tough sell against the classic heroes (not that it’s a bad thing). We’d put it on par with the under-rated Agent Carter, but we have to pick one over the other.
Click those numbers if you want to see what we said about the others entries.
1. THE AVENGERS
2. CAPTAIN AMERICA: THE WINTER SOLDIER
3. GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY
4. THOR: RAGNAROK
5. BLACK PANTHER
6. DAREDEVIL (SEASON 1)
7. IRON MAN
8. AGENT CARTER
9. JESSICA JONES (SEASON 2)
11. THE AVENGERS: AGE OF ULTRON
12. THE PUNISHER (SEASON 1)
13. IRON MAN 3
14. CAPTAIN AMERICA: THE FIRST AVENGER
15. IRON MAN 2
16. AGENTS OF SHIELD (SEASON 2)
17. AGENTS OF SHIELD (SEASON 1)
18. THOR: THE DARK WORLD
19. THE INCREDIBLE HULK
Now we were watching Ant-Man when this landed…