by Daileas Duclo
Netflix recently released their anticipated new series The Defenders and we were introduced to some rich storytelling in the inaugural season. The show is set in the aftermath of the second season of the Netflix original Daredevil, and shortly after the events of the first season of both Iron Fist and Jessica Jones. The show features Charlie Cox as Daredevil, Krysten Ritter as Jessica Jones, Mike Colter as Luke Cage, and Finn Jones and Danny Rand aka Iron Fist and gives the characters from Netflix’s various MCU shows a common enemy to team up against, providing the audience with some great character interactions.
The show starts with each of our heroes tracking down criminals in their respective realms before their paths cross as a consequence of a common link between their quarries. A dangerous and shadowy organization led by a powerful woman named Alexandra, played by Sigourney Weaver, called the Hand. The organization plays a key role in both Daredevil and Iron Fist, but we find out quickly that this ancient organization has great power and influence, which they have used through the ages to bring down empires and maintain their immortality. Our intrepid heroes find themselves crossing paths after the Hand launches their operation to acquire the substance that provides them with their immortality and ultimately allow them to destroy New York City. The leader of the Hand, Alexandra resurrects the love interest of Daredevil, Elektra Natchios as part of her plan to ensure the success of her organization’s mission to maintain their grip on immortality.
With each episode earthquakes rock New York City, the Hand exerts their influence over the authorities and sends their foot soldiers out to eliminate opposition, undermine the societal structures of the city, and harass our would-be heroes. After each of our young heroes finds the odds becoming too great to face on their own they form an uneasy alliance to face down the greatest challenge they’ve faced to date. The show highlights the tensions between Iron Fist and Daredevil, who are both vying for control of the Defenders, the complex romance between Jessica Jones and Luke Cage, and a vicious power struggle between the leaders of the Hand. Despite being only eight episodes, the audience is filled with a sense of urgency and dread as the Hand moves closer to their goal of destroying the city and the heroes face their own demons, while trying to thwart the Hand’s plot.
After the Defenders realize that one of their number is the key to the Hand’s path to continuing their immortality, they must make the hard decision of isolating one of their number while they race against time to save the city. Ultimately, our heroic team takes us on a wild ride that culminates in a final and desperate showdown between the Hand, the Defenders, and the local authorities. The ending of the first season leaves our heroes war-torn, but reinvigorated in their purpose, their friends exhausted, and the audience wanting more. If you haven’t watched The Defenders yet, it was worth the wait and be on the lookout for the release of the nest Netflix original series The Punisher.
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