Set to debut in 2017, trailers for the upcoming seasons of Iron Fist, The Punisher, and The Defenders all show up when users search for “Marvel” on Netflix. As part of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, The Defenders will be a crossover series, bringing Daredevil, Jessica Jones, Luke Cage, and Iron Fist together as a super-team in New York. Beyond the world of Netflix, The Defenders will be a part of the same world inhabited by The Avengers, Doctor Strange, the Guardians of the Galaxy, and all of the characters from Marvel Comics that appear in the MCU films and television series.
Few details have been released about The Defenders, especially regarding who they’ll be up against. For it to be a villain so powerful that it requires all four of these superheroes to work together, it would be easy to imagine an incredibly destructive force bigger than the Incredible Hulk and just shy of something like Ultron. But as noted by Screen Rant, one of the few details known about Marvel’s The Defenders is that Sigourney Weaver will be playing the primary antagonist.
Of course, no matter which character from the pages of Marvel Comics Weaver is playing, there will certainly be other villains that Cage, Jones, Daredevil and Iron Fist have to go through to get to her. Over the course of eight episodes, there will undoubtedly be a few bad-guy casualties as The Defenders build up to their final battle with Sigourney Weaver.
What follows is a list of five villains from Marvel Comics that could play a role in Marvel’s The Defenders on Netflix. Three characters could be a role for Sigourney Weaver, while the rest could be played by other villains that The Defenders destroy or encounter along the way. All of the villains listed here will be from issues of the referenced Marvel Comics that are available with a Marvel Unlimited subscription.
Both Misty Knight and Colleen Wing have been confirmed as reprising their roles in The Defenders from Luke Cage and Iron Fist, respectively. In Marvel Comics, the two have teamed up on numerous occasions, including as part of a re-branded Heroes For Hire, the name originally used by Luke Cage/Power-Man and Iron Fist. In Heroes For Hire #4, they need information from a crime boss named The Toddler, who runs a club in New York called The Crib for people with an adult baby fetish.
In a similar scenario, it could be a lot of fun to see how Jessica Jones and Luke Cage would respond to the types of people hanging out in such a club, especially compared to the aesthetic their characters are accustomed to in their own Netflix series. With the role of The Toddler being filled brilliantly by a Louie Anderson or Wayne Knight (Newman on Seinfeld) type, the mechanically-lethal dolls from the 2006 comic would probably be replaced by gun-wielding muscle-heads in diapers and onesies.
A lot of the villains in the Marvel/Netflix series have been crime bosses rather than villains with superhuman abilities. Such was the early life of Celia Ricadonna, who ran her own crime family to earn her fortune, according to Marvel. Eventually, as seen in the picture below from Heroes For Hire #5, she acquired powers by voluntarily having Skrull organs surgically implanted into her body.
She has super strength, super speed, shape-shifting abilities (which includes wings, granting her the ability to fly) and bioelectric energy blasts emanating from her hands at will. If they wanted to include Ricadonna in The Defenders, the Skrull origins of her powers would connect the Netflix/Marvel world to Guardians of the Galaxy and Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., since the Skrulls have a history intertwined with the Kree.
As an Inhuman exposed to the Terrigen Mists as a child, Medusa’s character (sister-in-law to Quicksilver, who has already been killed-off in the MCU) could easily be worked into the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Born into the Inhuman elite, it’s easy to imagine that her character could be adapted to the Netflix world by being someone who uses her power and influence in devious ways that The Defenders don’t agree with.
Since the character’s Inhuman abilities are directly related to her strong-as-steel hair that moves at Medusa’s will, it’s a role that Sigourney Weaver could fill without requiring a lot physically of the 67-year-old actress. Medusa plays a significant role in Avengers #8 (2010).
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Agatha Harkness was portrayed in Marvel Comics as a witch from the historic Salem Witch Trials, who would eventually go on to mentor Scarlet Witch in the dark arts before being killed by Scarlet (who has stints with both The Avengers and The Defenders on her résumé). Sigourney Weaver introducing magic into the Netflix/Marvel world as Agatha would open up all sorts of possibilities for the future, not to mention make a convenient way to reference Doctor Strange, a member of the original Defenders who just had a blockbuster MCU film of his own.
If the idea that a single witch wouldn’t be much of a battle for Luke Cage, Daredevil, Iron Fist and Jessica Jones, it should be noted that Harkness fended off The Frightful Four (including the Wizard, the Sandman, the Trapster, and Medusa) with relative ease while protecting a baby for the Fantastic Four in 1961.
Vulture or Shocker from Spider-Man: Homecoming
Assuming Marvel’s The Defenders is released on Netflix prior to Spider-Man: Homecoming hitting theaters on July 7, 2017, it could make sense for a pre-supervillain appearance from Vulture or Shocker on Netflix. Adrian Tommes (Vulture) was an inventor in New York before becoming a criminal, and Herman Schultz (Shocker) was a up to no good long before developing his bodysuit with shock-wave capabilities. It would be pretty simple for Marvel to work in a cameo for Michael Keaton or Bokeem Woodbine in The Defenders on Netflix.
Within the pages of Marvel Comics, Vulture was a nemesis of more than just Spider-Man. He also mixed things up with Frank Castle, as is the primary focus of The Punisher #3 (2011). Shocker was also a Villain For Hire at one point, and had battles against The Thunderbolts, The Avengers and Frank Castle again in Punisher War Journal #4 (2006). Depending on how things end in Spider-Man: Homecoming, perhaps Tommes or Schultz could show up in The Punisher. It wouldn’t be a surprise to at least hear references to the Spider-Man film in Marvel’s The Punisher on Netflix.
Marvel’s Iron Fist is scheduled to be released on Netflix on March 17, 2017. Both The Defenders and The Punisher are scheduled to be released later in 2017, also on Netflix. Theatrical releases in 2017 from the Marvel Cinematic Universe include Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 (May 5), Spider-Man: Homecoming (July 7) and Thor: Ragnarok (November 3).
[Featured Image by Craig Barritt/Getty Images]