The biggest team up Marvel fans have been waiting for is almost here, and we're wondering just how well Daredevil, Jessica Jones, Luke Cage and Iron Fist will work together in the fight over New York City. Ahead of Netflix's release of The Defenders, Executive Vice President of Marvel Television, Jeph Loeb has addressed why the show is shorter than the previous Marvel series, and whether a Season 2 is in The Defenders future.
Speaking to Collider during Comic Con weekend in San Diego, Loeb said #TheDefenders was always meant to be an eight episode show over the standard 13 episodes the individual superheroes got:
"It had nothing to do with cost. It was always eight. It had to do with what was the best way to tell the story."
Loeb further explained that the shorter length felt right because it broke up the story into acts in the right spots, while giving each hero a chance to standout. However, a shorter show is a bit risky because the story can run into issues like pacing, as early reactions to the show have pointed out. So far, critics have said the first four episodes are slow in getting the Defenders together, and the show spends too much time on explaining what everyone has been up to, which weighs the narrative down with unnecessary filler.
There's still a chance The Defenders may come out strong in the second half, as the remaining four episodes haven't been seen or reviewed by the critics yet. So, the decision to make it a shorter show may possibly pay off for #Marvel in the end.
Looking ahead to the future of The Defenders, the big questions on fans' minds are whether we'll get another chance to see these band of misfits team up again, and will The Punisher be joining in on the fun? Loeb doesn't want to make any promises just yet:
"I don't know. We haven't really gotten to that place. I don't really know if there will be a Defenders number two. I think one of the things that is unique to The Punisher, and particularly to Jon Bernthal's performance, is that character can stand alone. Even in the comic books, Frank Castle's Punisher is a character that sort of does well by himself. I think when you start mixing it in, it feels a little off. I'm not saying that it couldn't happen. I'm not saying it wouldn't happen. I'm just saying that I think it doesn't immediately lend itself towards, 'Oh yeah, sure, I can see the Punisher and Luke Cage hanging out.'"
But considering how Daredevil, Luke Cage, Jessica Jones, and even the poorly received Iron Fist have all received a second season, the chances of The Defenders joining forces again shouldn't be completely ruled out. After all, fans have binged watched their way through four individual Marvel series, characters with their own unique set of strengths and weaknesses, to finally see these four heroes coming together and watching what they're capable of as a team. The Defenders having another opportunity to combine their awesome abilities to stop a new threat to the city is too good a chance to pass up.
The Defenders will premiere on Netflix August 18, 2017.
What are you most excited to see in The Defenders?