April 10th. That’s when Netflix will drop every single episode of Daredevil. April 10th, April 10th, April 10th. Do you got that? Good. I think we are all on the same page now. Daredevil, Netflix’s first of four original Marvel TV shows leading up to an Avengers-style mini-series, is going to be available for us to stream to our heart’s delight on April 10th. I fear that I’m not making myself clear. The date we have to remember here is
Actually, the date I’m thinking of at the moment is November 7, 2013. That’s when Marvel first announced its deal with Netflix to produce four 13-episode TV shows focused on Daredevil, Jessica Jones, Luke Cage, and Iron Fist as a precursor to a Defenders mini-series. After that, it seemed like any additional news about the shows came to us on a slow-drip, Drew Goddard announced as Daredevil show-runner in December 2013 and then replaced by Steven S. DeKnight in May 2014, Melissa Rosenberg signed as Jessica Jones’ show-runner in December 2013 and then an entire year of no news until rumors popped up that they’d finally begun casting, ultimately settling on Krysten Ritter for the lead role. By that point at least we knew Daredevil’s cast was set with Charlie Cox as the blind hero, Deborah Ann Woll as beleaguered love interest Karen Page, Rosario Dawson as potential ally Claire Temple, and Vincent D’Onofrio as Kingpin, among several others. However, we still didn’t even know when either Daredevil (the best guess was somewhere around May 2015) or Jessica Jones would premiere, and we knew next to nothing about Luke Cage or Iron Fist other than the fact that whoever they cast as Luke Cage (it turned out to be Mike Colter) would probably show up first in Jessica Jones.
That’s the type of uncertainty when you’re dealing with something which has never really been done before, and Netflix operates by its own set of rules. However, the end result is that it sort of feels like we’ve been hearing about Daredevil for a while now with nothing to show for it yet. After all, The Flash, Gotham, and Constantine were announced around the same time as Daredevil and Agent Carter was officially announced a little later, yet those are all here now while Daredevil is still several months away. The fact that Daredevil is going to drop all 13 episodes on us at once probably has a lot to do with the delay. As Shawshank Redemption would put it, if we’ve waited this long maybe we’re willing to wait a little longer, although it’s not like we really have a choice or anything..
What about Jessica Jones? They’ve had a show-runner in place for over a year and finally have a leading lady as well as the guy who will probably pop up as a recurring love interest, Mike Colter’s Luke Cage. They obviously haven’t started filming yet, but what are the chances we get to see the show some time this year? IGN asked Netflix’s Ted Sarandos that very question, hoping to clear up conflicting reports which indicate the Marvel shows will arrive one year apart from each other:
“You should think of it about as roughly a year. Some will roll in as early as eight months and others in 15 months apart, and basically what it is is we’re not trying to meet a fall programming schedule or trying to hit a grid number, so really we want to give the shows enough time. Jessica Jones hasn’t started production yet, so a lot happens from the first day on the set to the last day of production. So we want to give them enough room and enough time to make a great show, so I don’t want to set up a rigid timetable and deliver a show every eight months or every twelve months, but you should expect them about a year apart.”
So, Daredevil in April 2015, Jessica Jones sometime around that in 2016, Luke Cage in 2017, and Iron Fist in 2018 with Defenders in 2019? Could happen, and Sarandos’ goal of supplying the content creators all the time they need to make the best show possible is applause-worthy.
I previously wrote a break-down of the four characters Netflix is adapting. If you missed it, here’s what I wrote about Daredevil and Jessica Jones, although be warned that if the shows stick to the comics there might be some spoilers below, particularly for Jessica Jones:
Daredevil is unquestionably the most well-known of the bunch if only because he’s the only one who has been adapted into a live-action film. Real name Matt Murdock, his origin story involves exposure to a radioactive substance which robs him of his eyesight but also heightens his other senses to superhuman levels. To seek vengeance for the death of his father, he becomes the vigilante hero Daredevil, donning a signature red costume and using his walking cane as a secret billy club. Although blind, he is able to use his extra senses to maneuver much as a person with normal eyesight would. As depicted in the Ben Affleck film, two of his main villains are Bullseye and Kingpin, and his primary love interest is Elektra, although he also has an extended history with Black Widow. 20th Century Fox owned the film rights to the character, but they reverted back to Marvel after Fox failed to get a reboot or sequel into production October of 2012.
This marks Jessica’s first foray into the mainstream after having been a comic book-only character for over a decade, although a Jessica Jones TV show from Melissa Rosenberg had been in development at ABC since 2010. Her origin story involves gaining superpowers like super-strength and flight via radioactive chemical exposure during a car crash, but having to deal with survivor’s guilt since that same crash claimed the lives of her family members. At that time, she was still a teenager attending the same highschool as Peter “Spider-Man” Parker. Inspired by Spider-Man, she sets out on a superhero career of her own. Then things got dark fast as she was psychologically tortured and mind-controlled by a Darededevil villain named Killgrave. From that point forward, her story involves brief stays as a private investigator and then as a journalist alongside Peter Parker at the Daily Bugle. She eventually marries Luke Cage, takes on the super hero name Power Woman (since Luke is Power Man), and the two have a daughter together. The TV show is said to focus on the former-superhero-turned-private-investigator portion of her career.