‘Jessica Jones’: Four Exciting Things Revealed At The Television Critics Association’s Summer Press Tour

[Warning: Minor spoilers ahead.]

Jessica Jones is Netflix’s second foray into the Marvel Cinematic Universe and with the success of Daredevil earlier this year, expectations are high. But up until yesterday, the series was still shrouded in mystery.

Melissa Rosenberg, Jessica Jones‘ showrunner; Ted Sarandos, Netflix President; and Jeph Loeb, Marvel’s Head of Television, were all in attendance at the TCA’s summer press tour and gave a glimpse into the world of its newest superhero franchise. Here’s four exciting reveals:

1. Jessica Jones Is Based On Marvel’s First R-Rated Comic, Alias

Jessica Jones made her first appearance in Marvel’s Max (R-rated) line of comics in the Brian Michael Bendis penned Alias (no relation to the J.J. Abrams television series of the same name).

Readers were introduced to Jewel, a small-time superhero vigilante, who’s real name was Jessica Jones. After recovering from some extremely traumatic events, Jones decides to hang up the costume and put out a shingle as a private investigator instead.

Jessica proceeds to split her time working on cases involving people with special abilities, trying to keep ends meeting and getting through each day.

Luke Cage (aka Power Man), another of The Defenders, is introduced as Jessica’s boyfriend.

As with Daredevil, it’s unlikely that they will follow the source material to the letter and Rosenberg has already stated that they will be bringing in some minor characters from the comics and playing with them. So though this is the jumping off point, the surprise will be in where they intend to take Jessica Jones after that.

Wherever they take it, it will most likely include more mature and complex storylines than your typical ‘superhero in tights’ storyline.

2. Alias Deals With Some Pretty Serious Trauma

Without getting into the specifics of the plot (if you want to know more about the story in the comic, the video below explains Jones in detail) — Jessica is controlled and violated on a number of levels by the Purple Man, the villain, who will be played by David Tennant in the Netflix series.

Rosenberg discussed what drew her to Jessica Jones (to be played by Krysten Ritter).

“It all started with Brian Michael Bendis’ Alias series. He created this incredibly flawed, damaged, interesting character that drew me. He wasn’t afraid to go there, and we went even further. We’ve gone further in all our storytelling.”

3. Jessica Jones Will Be Very Different Than Daredevil

When asked how the show would relate to Daredevil, Rosenberg stepped in to clarify.

“[Jessica Jones] exists in a cinematic universe. The mythology of the universe is connected but it will look very different. Tonally they’re very different.”

Daredevil was a much darker entry into the MCU than we were used to seeing up until that point — violent and enveloped in shadow. From the sounds of it Jessica Jones will be dealing with a lot of its own darkness, so it will be interesting to see in what way the shows will diverge in tone and look.

Loeb elaborated further, in an interview with Collider.

Daredevil [was], for all intents and purposes, a crime drama first and a superhero drama second. Jessica Jones is really a psychological thriller first and a superhero show second.”

4. Jessica Jones’ Release Date Has Moved Up

Originally, Jessica Jones was slated to be released in early 2016 but the debut’s now been moved up to late 2015.

Sarandos laid out how each of The Defenders shows will link together.

“I think, ideally, there will be a rhythm of, about every six months, you’ll get a new season, or a new series, from The Defender group. And they will cross over, do a combined season, once we’ve launched the first season of each of the four characters. And some will selectively have multiple seasons… The cadence of it, though, we believe, will probably be about two launches a year.”

Rosenberg went on to talk about what’s going to make Jessica Jones an addition to the recent Marvel movie and television successes.

“Marvel sparkles, when you, as the viewer, have a connection on a level that has nothing to do with powers, nothing to do with costumes, and nothing to do with comic books, but has everything to do with being a human being.”

That’s what truly makes good stories and why, if she’s right about Jessica Jones, it’s an exciting prospect.

Jessica Jones will debut its 13-episode first season on Netflix at the end of 2015, followed in 2016 by the second season of Daredevil and the first season of Luke Cage.

[Image courtesy Marvel via Total Comic Mayhem and Ilya S. Savenok/Getty Images Entertainment]

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