At SDCC 2016, Marvel shocked the world with the announcement that none other than movie legend Sigourney Weaver would be playing the role of the main villain in The Defenders! With this series set to unite the four street-savvy superheroes against the Hand, this surprising reveal added a whole new layer of mystery to The Defenders. Of course, never able to resist adding a layer of intrigue, Marvel chose not to give the name of the character Weaver would be playing. Now, that's finally been revealed — and it's not who anybody expected!
This is the first image of Sigourney Weaver's character, revealed exclusively to Entertainment Weekly. Excitingly, Marvel has also finally given us a name: Alexandra. Showrunner Marco Ramirez describes Alexandra as an "utter badass", adding:
“Sigourney is the kind of person you can buy as the smartest person in the room, who you can also buy as a person holding a flamethrower. Her character is a very powerful force in New York City. She’s everything Sigourney is: sophisticated, intellectual, dangerous.. I’m sorry. I can only say a bunch of adjectives right now.”
All this sounds phenomenal, but here's the question: just who is Alexandra?
Running Through the Options
Entertainment Weekly describe the character as having "no code name and no comic-book history", but frankly that's questionable. After all, why build up the air of mystery around Alexandra? Why cloak her name in such secrecy if the name doesn't actually mean something?
Oddly enough, given the insane size of Marvel's comic book universe, there haven't been many characters with the name 'Alexandra' — and these few can pretty much be ruled out straight away. Whether you're talking minor X-Men characters or second-string Iron Man villains, the few Alexandras in the comics just wouldn't fit with #Marvel #Netflix.
But if you assume a possible gender-swap — that a male 'Alexander' has been turned into a female 'Alexandra' — then you immediately hit upon a very intriguing possibility.
Meet Alexander Bont
In the comics, Alexander Bont was the first Kingpin of Hell's Kitchen. A ruthless crime lord, he gained a formidable reputation after he killed the costumed superhero known as the Defender, and held Hell's Kitchen under his influence for decades. In fact, Bont was the one who ordered the death of Daredevil's father after Jake Murdock refused to throw a boxing match.
Bont was actually one of the first villains put behind bars by Daredevil, and — upon learning that Matt Murdock may well be Daredevil — he launched a campaign of revenge. This involved blackmailing the ex-criminal Gladiator into launching an attack on Daredevil, after which Bont took matters into his own hands. Drugged up on Mutant Growth Hormone, Bont savagely beat Daredevil; he was only defeated when his heart gave out under the drug's strain.
The Pieces are in Place
Marvel's Netflix shows have been a tremendous success, but Daredevil is generally considered to shine brighter than the rest. It makes sense to use a character from the rich history of Daredevil comics; what's more, crucially, some key elements of Bont's story have already been seeded in the shows.
Take Gladiator. Played by Matt Gerald, the character of Melvin Potter — the real-name of Gladiator — has been a recurring character through both seasons of Daredevil. He was originally coerced into working for the Kingpin in Daredevil Season 1, and became the man who designed Daredevil's suit. His future as Gladiator was deliberately teased in Season 2, where we saw his telltale logo and even his personal body armor.
Although Marvel's Netflix shows have been fairly obsessed with crime-lords, the reality is that The Defenders has to deliver something different. After all, we know that the series will continue the overarching narrative of Elektra and the Hand; if Alexandra Bont is indeed the main villain, it's possible that she's working alongside the Hand, using them for her own ends, or has actually been transformed into a Snakeroot: one of the Hand's elite leaders. These leaders can come from any walk of life, but are united in their ruthlessness, cunning, and evil.
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We've finally gotten a name, but surprisingly, the mystery of Sigourney Weaver's character continues. On the little we know so far, Alexandra Bont seems to be the most logical possibility. But as further details emerge, that may change; after all, Entertainment Weekly do stress that Weaver's character has "no comic-book history". Only time will tell.
Do you think Sigourney Weaver is playing Alexandra Bont?
(Source: Entertainment Weekly; Poll Image Credit: 20th Century Fox)