What’s happening with Marvel and Netflix

Starting January 1st, a new 4-year contract between Disney and Netflix will come into effect. After spreading news that Walt would launch his own version of the popular network, Disney and Netflix have agreed over few billion dollars and a plan for 2016 has been released, including world premieres of a bunch of stuff, including: […]

Starting January 1st, a new 4-year contract between Disney and Netflix will come into effect. After spreading news that Walt would launch his own version of the popular network, Disney and Netflix have agreed over few billion dollars and a plan for 2016 has been released, including world premieres of a bunch of stuff, including:

  • Zootopia (also known as Zootropolis), a 3d cartoon about a framed fox (Jason Bateman) and a rabbit cop (Ginnifer Goodwin);
  • live action version of The Jungle Boook, and we still are all a little anxious about it;
  • The Finest Hours, a semi-catastrofic action movie at sea, with Chris Pine and Casey Affleck;
  • Alice Through The Looking Glass, the sequel of Tim Burton‘s unimpressive Alice in Wonderland, featuring Muppet’s director James Bobin and the original cast, including Johnny Depp as the Mad Hatter.

Still, we could care less.

What we really care about, is how this new alliance will be good (or bad) for all the Marvel followers out there.


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1. The Big Screen – Captain America: Civil War

The first important piece of news is that Netflix will host the upcoming Captain America: Civil War, the next big step in Marvel’s big cinematic tie-in.
Now, as you might remember, I have never been a Civil War fan. I though the idea of superhearoes fighting each other was banal and depressing, and the excuse of a Superhuman Registration Act was rather preposterous, and unoriginal even in itself. The way it was developed by Mark Millar was poor and superficial. Still, we had some good pieces of narrative, such as Paul JenkinsCivil War Special (1, 23) or Hudlin’s special about T’challa and Ororo. And I still remember with particular affection BendisConfession. Considering that the political aspect of Civil War was poorly developed and rather silly, I though it was a rather good idea to develop the movie plots adding something else, that somethign being Bucky. I’m happy that our road to Civil War didn’t just start with the (rather silly) argument seen in Age of Ultron and I trust the Russos have learned their lesson after directing the frankly average Winter Soldier. This trailer certainly seems to be more exciting. And there’s more Ironman, so it cannot be that bad.

Still, this is interesting regardless of Netflix, since it will hit theaters before it broadcasts on the small screen.


 

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2. The Small Screen – Daredevil

Ok, I’ll admit it. You haven’t seen me writing about this series because I was rather unimpressed by it. I have always been a Daredevil fan and I suffered a lot from the fact that Italy has been lacking a proper running head for years. I was very happy when they started publishing Mark Waid‘s new Daredevil series. What the hell, I even liked the movie. Seriously. I might not be Daredevil’s n.1 fan, but I think I rank pretty high.
One might think I was disappointed because of reasons connected to Charlie Cox. Honestly, no. I never had a clear depiction of how Matt Murdock should look and seriously, if I could digest Ben Afflect you can imagine this is not the issue. Also, I think that the general concept for the series was pretty good: Hell’s Kitchen atmospheres were right, daylight parts were good, night fights were great.
Still, it bore me to tears.
It had no tension, no pathos, no suspance.
Vincent D’Onofrio‘s authistic Kingpin was rather horrible and little could Zurer‘s Vanessa do in order to save the day.
I had to make an effort in order to finish it.
I have no particular desire to start Season 2, regardless of Elektra.

That being said, I like the idea of having tv series revolving around Marvel’s characters we actually don’t see in movies. Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. wasn’t that great and I think movie characters are right where they are. You can’t possibly have a series about minor characters without making them look… well, minor. In this, Daredevil is the perfect character: he works in alleys, underground, and you can create a whole network of this kind of characters without having them collide with bigger starts like Ironman and Captain America. And this brigs us straightly to my next point.


 

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3. The Small Screen – Jessica Jones

When someone asks me who the fuck is Jessica Jones, I usually answer “Alias”. Unless they stare back at me, which means we have to sit down and talk about it.
I’ll admit that honestly I didn’t remember about her when the told me the title of this series. I had to check it myself. I never bought Alias nor The Pulse (a girl has to eat) and I wasn’t such a big fan of Young Avengers. I didn’t know she was the girl behind Jewel and little did I know about Jewel herself. Honestly, I could care less either.
Still, Jessica Jones is a good series, with lots of Daredevil’s strenght points such as a beautiful gloomy underground atmosphere and no fear in facing those “adult” topics that made us like Marvel and we had feared they were going to disappear when Disney stepped in and turner alcooholic Iron Man into clorophylle-addicted Iron Man. Also, Jessica Jones seems to be succeeding where Daredevil failed. It has good pull, even if sometimes you may find yourself wondering what the fuck is going on, and it succeeded in building suspance towards David Tennant‘s Killgrave. It doesn’t have self-standing episode-restricted subplots, which I think is good, and it’s able to create a strong connection between characters. Also, it has a lesbian Carrie-Ann Moss, and that can be an incentive, I won’t deny it.

That being said, obviously we are starting to see a pattern, aren’t we? No? Ok, I’ll give you a clue. Both unglamorous underground heroes. Both in New York City.

Rather understandably, Marvel seems to be aiming at a similar direction of the Arrow / Flash / Legends of Tomorrow attempt.
Certainly I’m curious to see where it gets them.

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