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Friday, 8 September 2017

Marvel's The Defenders: Netflix Review



Well, its finally here, The Defenders has landed throwing together some of our favourite (and not so favourite) gritty Marvel characters. 

Firstly, it would be quite easy to jump on the bandwagon and start bitching about Iron Fist and how that wasn't as good as the other individual series and how we don't feel as connected to him as we do the others. This is currently a rather laboured point and honestly I have just tried to enjoy the show without thinking to much about which parts were good and which were bad. 

In a crossover like this, where a number of well developed characters and story-lines merge into one, its very hard to just think of it as one new thing rather than its constituent parts. 

The Hand - I'm not a fan

As I have said previously, (see here) Iron Fist wasn't great. And frankly the second half of DareDevil Season 2 wasn't great either. "The Hand" are far too cheesy and not remotely relate-able so they don't make a great villain. Killgrave, Cottonmouth and Fisk all made for a brilliant counterpoint to their hero because they were portrayed as people we could understand in some way, something your never going to get with a secret global shadow organisation of Ninjas obsessed with immortality and power... 

The best part of The Hand's inclusion in this series was giving Jessica Jones and Luke Cage the opportunity to call out how ridiculous it all sounds.

Jessica and Luke's banter - Loved it

Because of their previous ..erm, "rendezvous", they already have an existing chemistry that was possibly the best part of this series. We all know they get married and have kids in the comics so we can't help but want them to shack up. 

These characters don't exist in a magic infested secret ninja kind of world. Their reality is just like ours with some superpowers thrown in. So while they didn't fit into this story naturally at all (their reasons for getting involved were flimsy at best) they did make the watching a whole bunch more bearable when other characters were ranting on about immortality and all that noise. 

The Team - It didn't glue together very well

Possibly the best thing about each individual series is that they are all very different characters with established personalities and each with a plethora of side characters that draw you in. Shoving 4 individuals who are independent by natural together was always going to be a struggle and I'm not sure they really made it all work. Whenever all of the Defenders are on screen together it felt like they were all struggling to let their personalities shine out above the rest, I guess it just didn't feel very natural to me. 
Following on from this, there are too many good side characters jammed together interacting in ways that again felt inorganic. They all have great characters that I love watching but they were all out of their natural environment and not getting anywhere near enough of the screen time they need (Just make a Foggy series dammit). 

The real issue with all this is not that the characters are all so different, its that each show has a distinctive flavour and mixing 4 good flavours rarely makes another good one...

SUMMARISE! 

Overall I did enjoy each episode and the series on a whole, sort of in a way that I would have enjoyed watching each scene separately on YouTube, it didn't really gain anything from being one whole series and I wasn't dying to watch the next episode at the credits. The story didn't grip me, but each part was crafted and acted well, its hard to explain but it just didn't have that special something. 

I will of course keep watching Marvels Netflix series as they remain the best thing Marvel have done in my opinion and I cannot bloody wait for another season of Daredevil, Jessica Jones and Luke Cage, who knows I might even watch Iron Fist Season 2...

3/5 Slices 

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