‘Jessica Jones’ is a creepy, disturbing superhero tale

In this Netflix and Marvel Studios original, viewers comfort zones will be broken, and it is more than OK.

“Jessica Jones” starring Krysten Ritter and Rachael Taylor, tells a complex adult comic book tale full of genuine tension and thrills.


Private detective and super-powered Jessica Jones tries to make up for her past sins. After a deeply traumatic experience with the mind-controlling Kilgrave, she wants to do a little right in the world, and make some money off of it.

The past haunts her, causing post-traumatic stress disorder and drinking hefty amounts of alcohol. Things only get worse when the seemingly dead Kilgrave comes back and goes after Jones. It becomes a race against time to stop the madman before the few people Jones holds close die.

Marvel Studios seems like it has run out of creative steam. While “Avengers: Age of Ultron” was a box office success, it is an incredibly flawed film.

Even “Ant-Man,” a semi-surprise success from the summer, only came out a decently entertaining film, running off of the talent that is Paul Rudd.

But Netflix originals is where Marvel has succeeded creatively. Properties like “Daredevil” are given respect because the creators have full reign to be dark and tell dynamic stories. And “Jessica Jones” is no different.

The characters of Jones and Kilgrave are the highlights of this series.

Marvel Studios is notoriously bad at creating good villains and strong female roles. With the exception of Loki, Wilson Fisk and Black Widow, it has always been the weak link since their cinematic universe began with “Iron Man.”


Jones and Kilgrave buck the trend. Both characters are played by actors — Ritter and David Tennant — who inhabit the role. They are helped by writing that makes both flawed, strong, frightening and engaging characters.

The push toward a disturbing story makes “Jessica Jones” profoundly tense.

This is a show full of trigger warnings. The idea of rape, mind-control and PTSD are in the mix and talked about with care, but also without kid gloves.

The Marvel Universe, much like the real world, has a lot of both happiness and terror in it. This series shows that comic book adaptations can tell an important story and how diverse the world is.

But, after 13 episodes, the darkness becomes somewhat over-bearing.

Bringing up serious topics in superhero movies is great, and no film or TV show should be funny all the time. But at a certain point, bad events pile up in “Jessica Jones” and gets overwhelming.

It all hits to a point where viewers will say, “OK. We get it. Jessica Jones’ life sucks,” and it makes various, hard hitting moments less significant.

Stars: 4.5 out 5

Jacob Pierce can be reached at [email protected] or on Twitter @JacobPierce1_DE.