Netflix and Chill: The Defenders

So it dropped.  At long last, the Avengers of the small screen reached us and graced us with a series to actually chill to, The Defenders.  The culmination of 5 series’ of Marvel characters singular adventures has come together in the 8 episode dope-fest at long last.

Now honestly I’m going to try not to spoil much for you guys who haven’t yet watched it, (what you’re waiting for still I’m not sure…) but there’s no guarantee once I’m in my flow so for the sake of safety….

***SPOILER ALERT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!***

Now first things first if you’re one of these annoying people who’ll jump into this franchise now and think that’s fine…leave.  Seriously.  You will not understand all the little intricacies woven into The Defenders because you haven’t done your due diligence.  You need to watch all series up to this point, if you can’t hack it I understand, you’re not built for this, it’s ok.  For those who already did or will…let’s go.

Luke Cage finally gets his damn coffee!!!! Had to get that out the way, let’s get to the meat of things.  We see that there’s obviously been some time passed since the end of Luke Cage’s solo series and Iron Fist’s and New York seems to be developing a sort of minor, passive nonchalance about its vigilante and street level enhanced individual population.  All our heroes are in their own spaces, Matt has hung up the horns, Luke is looking to get back on his job, Jessica…well Jessica drinks and Danny is private jetting around with Colleen trying to figure out what happened to Kun’lun.  However, we all know that The Hand moves low key…

Sigourney Weaver enters as Alexandra…and boy let me tell you, this character is badass.  She makes one of the best villains we’ve had in the MCU thus far and further cements the most incredible run of antagonists (looking at you Diamondback) the Netflix side of things has provided.  She seamlessly unites and provides a foundation to the fragmented, multi faceted portrayal of The Hand we’ve seen thus far also giving some finally well deserved to pay off to the g that is Madame Gao at long last.  We’re caught up on the origin of them, their intentions, organisation, the lot.  Oh, and Stick returns.  That’s always a plus.

Now I’m not going to get into some giant easter egg list but I will cover some small key moments here, like Luke Cage and Iron Fist throwing down, Misty being erm disarmed, Elektra well never doing as she’s told as per usual etc.  Suffice to say there are enough small things retold here from the comics that the deeper heads will smile I think.  Thus we must turn to that which upset many people in the last Netflix offering…Iron Fist.

I get it.  Really I do, people found him an annoying character however you must look at this from his actual perspective.  He has been raised in a monastery and then thrust into the spotlight upon returning to New York and has to balance his life as Rand as well as his responsibilities as Iron Fist so yeah…he’ll be a bit dumb at times.  The fighting…ok as someone who’s currently studying a form of Kung fu and been involved in martial arts over a significant period of time I was very disappointed at that aspect of his character.

When I heard he’d only had 3 weeks training prior to shooting for his series I was more understanding and more frustrated.  Finn Jones, however, did declare (I’d heard) he’d remained in consistent training since.  It shows, his movement is considerably better in this series, the fight choreography provided is far more on point and it finally begins to show us an Iron Fist comparable to what we’d expect in the comics.

The chemistry displayed between the Defenders is hilarious, quips and digs are constantly being thrown and you can sense the lack of common ground between them it slow but sure development due to the necessity which is completely relatable to the original line of the Defenders and their portrayal in the comics as a “non-team”.  The chemistry is very skillfully manipulated around the most popular of the Defenders currently, Daredevil and not quite so much as to completely relegate the other characters but enough to make sense.  The stakes are kept high enough to be exciting but small enough to see why this would escape the Avengers notice.

The repercussions are realistic as well.  This is some serious business going down here for simple street level heroes, never mind those who don’t want to accept being heroes much less a team, as a result, we see the death of the legend that is Stick, and the sacrifice of Daredevil.  There’s something balanced about the end of it all, and as we have been told this essentially heralds the start of Phase 2 for the Netflix universe.

What do I want to see…well obviously 2nd and 3rd seasons for our current guys and gal.  I’m really looking forward to Punisher season 1.  I really need a Blade series though, and I’ve been begging for this for ages so give it me already, give Maresse Crump the lead, let’s get Morbius in there as a set up for season 2 etc.  I also won’t say no to a good Moon Knight series, and please, please get Shang Chi into Iron Fist season 2.  Let’s start bumping these guys up to look like competition for the Avengers too, these guys may be street level but they’re all seriously heavy hitters in the comics, Daredevil and Iron Fist are skill matches for Black Panther and Captain America, Luke Cage can tussle with the Hulk for a time, let’s see this represented a bit more, this opens up the door to the movie/Netflix crossover we’ve all been screaming for since the inception.

All in all a nice round up to the first phase of Netflix.  I have very few complaints, everything was taken care of quite handily in 8 episodes, nothing dragged, nothing seemed too rushed either.  It did the job well and I look forward to seeing what comes next for our street level guys.

Until next time homies…

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