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The Defenders fails to live up to predecessors

“The Defenders” follows four vigilantes protecting Manhattan from
an organization known as The Hand. Courtesy of Netflix

“The Defenders” follows four vigilantes protecting Manhattan from an organization known as The Hand. Courtesy of Netflix

“The Defenders” follows four vigilantes protecting Manhattan from an organization known as The Hand. Courtesy of Netflix

Justin Reece, Staff Writer

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After waiting for 2 long years and sitting through five seasons worth of television, Marvel & Netflix’s latest collaborative effort, “The Defenders”, has finally arrived to our screens.

The previous Marvel/Netflix shows such as “Daredevil”, “Jessica Jones”, etc. were thrilling dramas in which we were introduced to new heroes that represented the working class citizens that lived in the Marvel Cinematic Universe.

The shows gave us a chance to explore the darker and more grounded side of the MCU. They all had distinct styles and compelling characters which distinguished them from each other.

Unfortunately, “The Defenders” is not on par with its predecessors. Despite the time spent developing these characters and their world, the show falls flat on its face and doesn’t bring us anything new or interesting to the table.

Perhaps one saving grace of the show is the caliber of its acting. The performances in the show are quite solid all around. Every actor hops right back into their roles as if they never left. For example, Krysten Ritter returns as Jessica Jones, the cranky private detective with a drinking problem who hasn’t been seen since her debut in November 2015. Surprisingly the supporting actors are great too, they add a bit of variety and more normalcy to the show compared to the leads, but are immensely underutilized. There’s a point in the show where literally all the side characters just sit in a room with each other and do nothing for the rest of the series. The show has many great actors but doesn’t really do much with them, the leading example of them being Sigourney Weaver as “Alexandra”. Alexandra is the leader of The Hand, an evil clan of ninjas in search of immortality. Weaver does a fantastic job when it comes to being a menacing figure, but her character has no arc and is such a stereotype that it’s painful to see such potential wasted on a character who serves no true purpose in the bigger picture.

The show’s most glaring flaw lies within its cliche and stale writing, For example, one of the leads refuses to get involved with the vigilante lifestyle again. Most of the protagonists show no signs of forming a bond with one another; the only exception being Jessica Jones and Luke Cage. (Mike Colter), whose relationship was established in a prior show.

One of the conflicts towards the end of the season is reminiscent of the relationship of Cap and Bucky in “Captain America: The Winter Soldier”, even hitting the same beats in the dialogue. However, the writing for the character of Danny Rand (Finn Jones) is a lot better in “The Defenders” than in his own show, “Iron Fist”. The character is less mind numbingly naive and more tolerable than before. All in all, “The Defenders” is an upsettingly boring show that you can skip if you’re not a diehard comic book fan. If you do watch the show it is highly recommended that you watch the other Marvel/Netflix shows beforehand in order to get a better understanding of the characters and some of the basic plot lines and conflicts of the show. If you enjoyed the previous shows, you may want to tune in to stay in the loop.

Rating: 2/5 stars

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The Defenders fails to live up to predecessors