By Amanda Gurall
We were surprised by a screening of the entire first episode of Marvel‘s Jessica Jones last night at New York Comic Con and I am going to tell you right now to clear at least two days to watch and rewatch the show when it premieres November 20th. I cannot say enough good things about the show and, to be honest, I woke up this morning thinking about the story and wanting to watch more right away.
The episode picks up with Jessica working as a private detective in Hell’s Kitchen. When clients come to her looking for their daughter, Jessica realizes the girl is under the control of someone from her past. She starts having flashbacks to the trauma that Kilgrave inflicted on her, which start in a subtle way with light changing to purple, a sinister voice or an image in her memory. I won’t give much more away, but we were joined by the cast minus David Tennant who sent a video message from London.
Mike Colter (Luke Cage), Rachael Taylor (Trish Walker), Eka Darville (Malcom), Erin Moriarty (Hope), Will Traval (NYC Cop), and Carrie-Anne Moss joined Krysten Ritter who plays Jessica as you surely know. It was a NYCC exclusive that Carrie-Anne Moss plays Jeryn Hogarth in a gender swapped role from the comics. Moss said that as she read every script, she ended up surprised and thrilled by where the story went because “the writing is impeccable, the storyline so rich and our lead is amazing.” Show runner Melissa Rosenberg also joined the group, sharing that she had been working on this for about four years and so far it feels like an extraordinary payoff.
Ritter embodies the character perfectly in appearance and manner. It takes a talented actress to be able to portray Jessica not as victim or stereotype, but as someone who will, at the end of the day, put aside their fears and fight for justice. Her relationship with Luke Cage is not yet established in the first episode, but as it progresses we will see how well they work together and explore the complexities of this relationship which the actors were only able to hint at. We did see the most explicit sex scene in a Marvel television property in this episode which did not come across gratuitous but rather simply part of an adult story which is definitely welcomed. Are we actually getting a strong, real character who happens to be female? Very possibly.
As mentioned, Tennant was not in attendance, but what we saw in the first episode promises to fully cash in on the clips you have already seen with his sinister voice and eyes but it gets so much darker than I imagined and it felt like he is going to be a superb villain.
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