By Alex Doria
SPOILER ALERT: This article discusses major plot points of Jessica Jones.
Jessica Jones immediately won over critics for its grit and dark content when the series premiered in November of 2015. Jessica is not your average Marvel superhero. In fact, her prickly demeanor and gruff attitude is unlike anything we’ve seen from a female superhero in the Marvel universe.
Clearly haunted by her traumatic past, Jessica drinks whiskey straight from the bottle during working hours, swears like a sailor, and resolves disagreements between her and her clients by literally throwing them out her door. And when a woman with super strength throws you out the door, you are being thrown in every sense of the word.
Despite her reserved and aggressive exterior, Jessica’s character is arguably the most realistic of the Marvel superheroes. First, there is a purposeful lack of spandex. Instead of ripping off her street clothes Superman style to save the day, Jessica sticks to her blue jeans and leather jacket. Honestly, who would willingly wear a full latex costume under their everyday clothes on the off chance that the world needs saving? Or worse, take the time for a costume change? Ain’t nobody got time for that.
Rather than focus on the novelty of her super strength and the ability to jump (and fall) from great heights, we see Jessica struggle from the burden of her abilities. Instead of making her popular amongst the masses as a heroic pursuant of justice, Jessica’s powers ostracize and isolate her from society as a lone vigilante.
There’s no applause and cheers from the crowd for Jessica Jones. Everything she does is done alone. It is not until Jessica meets Luke Cage that the monotony of Jessica’s life is disrupted. See, Luke has the gift of being indestructible, so he can understand Jessica’s life and problems better than most. While their relationship begins with a one-night stand, their story is not a romance, but a meeting of kindred spirits who find common ground and solitude together.
But what’s a girl to do when the man who victimized and sexually assaulted her via mind control powers comes back to stalk and terrorize her? Jessica has to turn to her ultimate support system: her best friend Trish. Of course, as any good friend would, Jessica kept away from Trish to protect her from the dangers that are present in Jessica’s everyday life. But when it comes to Kilgrave, who has the power of mind control to make anyone and everyone do his bidding, a girl’s gotta have backup.
Reunited, Jessica and Trish prove that the friendship and bond between women can be just as strong as romantic love. Together they boost and support each other so that they both become stronger to combat the charming and terrifying Kilgrave.
That’s right, charming. Just as Jessica is no ordinary hero, Kilgrave is no ordinary villain. For Kilgrave, the name of the game is “How Many Women Can I Manipulate And Use For My Own Pleasure Until I Get Bored?” and he plays this game with all the wit and allure of an attractive gentleman.
The bottom line? Kilgrave must be stopped. And there’s nothing quite like seeing the power of a female friendship take down a jerk who thinks all the world’s women are his playthings. Through the support of her best friend, Jessica is able to find her own inner strength to defeat the man who nearly destroyed her. Before, she was strong. Now, she’s empowered.
Watch out Hell’s Kitchen, you’ve got yourself a woman to reckon with.
(Image via Disney/Netflix)