Marvel Cinematic Universe has once again created an expansion pack.
With the success of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. and Agent Carter, the studio decided to give rise to a new series of shows. Each will be released by Netflix, and will eventually lead to a crossover series parallel to The Avengers, titled Marvel’s The Defenders. The team will include Matthew Murdock/Daredevil, Jessica Jones, Luke Cage and Iron Fist.
The shows began to air in April with the premiere of Daredevil.
The program stars Charlie Cox in the title role, Deborah Ann Woll (True Blood), Elden Hansen, Rosario Dawson (Rent), and Vincent D’Onofrio (Law & Order: Criminal Intent).
It tells the origin story of blind man Matthew Murdock, as he seeks to solve crime as both lawyer and vigilante. With the help of his partner of law Foggy Nelson (Henson), and their secretary Karen Page (Woll), they attempt to put a stop to crime king Wilson Fisk (D’Onofrio) and his followers.
Unlike the Marvel films, Daredevil has a very dark and serious tone. It balances those of Christopher Nolan’s Dark Knight Trilogy and House of Cards. It not only delves into the superhero world, but it provides a commentary on the politics of the media and who controls it.
The cast is incredible. Cox, a London native, speaks in an American tongue like any other American-born citizen. His nuances as a blind character are subtle and natural, never forced. Woll is similar in her performance, playing both strong and emotionally distraught in a balanced way. Henson provides comic relief; however, his performance pales in comparison to those around him. The effects and cinematography that accompany Daredevil are additionally commendable.
Each episode itself plays like a miniature film. The suspense is wonderfully executed. It is distinct from other Marvel films in that it’s unpredictable every time. The Daredevil is often in near death situations and these episodes cause the audience to feel as if he really may not make it.
The overall story of the season sees Murdock and his team against Wilson Fisk, with the final showdown in the finale. The show’s production value, cast and references to the media and issues in politics today make it stand out in an overcrowded plaza of Marvel heroes.
The next chapter in the Defenders series is Marvel’s Jessica Jones, hitting Netflix on November 20th.