Monday, August 21, 2017

Pilot Review: The Defenders

The Defenders (Netflix)
Premiered August 18

We’ve been waiting for this for a long time – me and everyone else who enjoys the Marvel universe. This is the reason that I suffered through all thirteen episodes of “Iron Fist.” I fear that this show is designed more than other to be binged, since this opening hour did little if nothing to indicate what it will be about – we have no idea what the purpose of this earthquake planned by Sigourney Weaver’s Alexandra was – or how our four heroes (not that they use that word) will come together. There’s a good amount of talent be found here from all three shows (as well as some holdovers from the fourth awful one), and some easy ways to see how they’ll be united. Claire is the obvious connector since she’s appeared on all four shows, and even though she doesn’t really know Jessica, Luke sure does. I’m most thrilled to see Jessica and Trish back, though I still feel that show is so much better than the other three that it will be weird to see her in the same place and universe as the others. This is a direct continuation of the first season of “Iron Fist” picking up a decent amount of time after we left the other three shows, and all four are coming back for another season after this, so let’s hope it’s all worthwhile. I think things will improve once they have the chance to find each other and realize that they’re the only ones who can stop Alexandra from fulfilling her nefarious plan, whatever it may be. There’s no way I’m not watching now, but this wasn’t the thrilling start I was anticipating.

How will it work as a series? All four of the protagonists here are very different in how they approach things, with two being invulnerable and extremely strong and the other two possessing important secret abilities. I’m curious to see how they interact since, like “The Avengers,” that’s probably going to be the most fun part. And, with any luck, Danny Rand won’t be featured much.
How long will it last? Given the success of the Marvel brand on Netflix and that fact that all shows that fed into this one are returning for another go, I’m sure that this show will be back for a second round as well regardless of ratings and whether it’s deemed creatively sound. Good reviews don’t hurt, and so I’d consider this one very primed for a renewal.

Pilot grade: B

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