Well I hope everyone had a great holiday (whether it was Christmas, Chanukah, Kwanza, the Winter Solstice or the glorious celebration to the Triple Fish God) but it's time to start rolling into 2015. Put on your party hat, pop the cork on the champagne and point all eyes to the first phase of Marvel Studios' foray into Netflix with their street level crime shows in, what can also be called, The Defenders storyline.
[Daredevil](movie:47230) from [executive producer] Steven S. DeKnight and starring Charlie Cox as the Man Without Fear hits the online streaming service in May. Soon after that we will get A.K.A Jessica Jones with the recently cast Krysten Ritter in the titular role and Mike Colter as Luke Cage. Colter will then follow it up with his own Luke Cage series. Lastly, Danny Rand will hit the screen in Iron Fist before they all come together to save the part of Manhattan that, I guess, the Avengers are too busy to deal with when Marvel and Netflix launch The Defenders.
But none of this is news. Everyone knows all of that by now. I don't write news. I write opinions and wish lists. Sometimes they are mistaken for news, though, and before you know it Spanish speaking countries all think Arnold Schwarzenegger is actually in talks to play Deathstroke.
So what does any of that have to do with the Marvel Netflix Universe? Well, while most people are looking forward to Phase 1 and gobbling up every bit of information they can in the meantime, I'm already looking to Phase 2. Don't get me wrong, I can't wait to see how Phase 1 unfolds. What little information we have so far sounds great and I'm anxiously looking forward to it. But part of the fun with the Marvel Cinematic Universe is to see where it's heading.
There was a time when I thought that the films were going to come to an end after the third Avengers film. Each franchise would get a trilogy, contracts would end and that would be all she wrote until the inevitable reboot. So imagine how excited I was when it was announced that Phase 3 was being used as a jumping off platform for new franchises whilst finishing out the existing ones. So when the contracts for Robert Downey Jr., Chris Evans and Chris Hemsworth expire and their respective franchises end the Marvel Cinematic Universe can (and will) extend well into Phases 4, 5 and 6 with the likes of Ant-Man, Black Panther, Captain Marvel, The Inhumans and the [Guardians of the Galaxy](movie:424073).
So is it safe the assume that the Netflix stuff will do the same? Will we see multiple seasons of Daredevil? Further team-up adventures with The Defenders 2 and 3? Will more characters who aren't necessarily cut out for blockbuster film adventures be introduced in their own series? I think yes.
And here's what I would like the landscape of the Marvel Netflix Universe: Phase 2 to look like:
Daredevil: Season Two
Of course you have to start with a sequel. Sure, Phase 2 of the MCU brought us Guardians of the Galaxy but it still kicked things off with sequels to Iron Man, Thor and Captain America. So with Daredevil launching Phase 1 on Netflix it makes sense for a second season to kick things off with Phase 2.
I can't begin to presume what it would be about since season one obviously hasn't aired yet. But we do know, as it was recently reveled by Steven S. DeKnight, that popular villain Bullseye will not be making a season one appearance but is not ruled out of future seasons. So I would love to see a season where the Man Without Fear does battle with one of his most important villains. And with that, it's wish list casting time!
Colin Farrell's performance as the Irish assassin was arguably one of the best parts of the very poorly received 2003 film. But, obviously, a new actor would need to arm himself with the paper clips of doom this time around. Sean Patrick Flanery has exhibited an awesomely authentic Irish accent in The Boondock Saints (not to mention great skills at the act of murder) and if you follow his Twitter you'll see that he's also quite the martial artist. I believe Flanery would make a killer Bullseye (pun partially intended) and would help lead an amazing second season.
AKA Jessica Jones: Season Two
Not much to say about this one. The idea of a former superhero turned private investigator is sure to have more than one solid season lined up.
Heroes For Hire: Season One
Luke Cage and Iron Fist have their own solo series lined up for Phase 1 but they arguably best known to comic readers for teaming up as the Heroes For Hire. I say we use their respective solo outings in Phase 1 as great character introductions but merge them together from Phase 2 and on. Jessica Jones (Krysten Ritter) would also be a recurring guest-star as she was also a Hero For Hire.
The Punisher: Season One
Marvel Studios recently reacquired the rights to Frank Castle from Lionsgate but there are currently no plans for more Punisher films. None of the previous films were very greatly received (though I thought Punisher: War Zone was a pretty fantastic film because it knew exactly what it needed to be). With that said, The Punisher is a character that seems more tailor made for cable television. He needs to be darker, grittier and more violent than a mainstream superhero film can allow for and his story is better told over 13 hours as opposed to two. I would love to see someone like Frank Darabont tackle the Garth Ennis era Frank Castle. Perhaps with someone like Jon Bernthal (The Walking Dead) in the role.
Moon Knight: Season One
Fans have been asking for Moon Knight for years now. Honestly, I never read this series and know very little about him (outside of what I looked up on Wikipedia just before starting this article) but when your often referred to as "the Batman of the Marvel Universe" then you have a lot of potential. Exploring his origin story and having him seek vengeance and fight crime from Chicago to New York would make for great television with the right creative team.
Namor the Sub-Mariner: Season One
This one is veering more to the "maybe" side because last time I checked the character of Namor was still owned by Universal. It's unlikely that they'll ever produce a film, though, so the rights reverting to Marvel is only a matter of time. With Jason Mamoa lined up to play Aquaman for Warner Bros. and DC it seems less likely that Marvel would risk over-saturating the market on a Namor film. So perhaps a Netflix series? He was often a Defender, after all. And let's be honest, television and geek friendly superstar Sam Witwer would make one hell of a Sub-Mariner.
Am I right? Tell me I'm right.
The Defenders: Season Two
And just like each phase of the Marvel Cinematic Universe comes to a close with an Avengers film, Phase Two of the Netflix shows would climax with another Defenders team-up.
So that's my hope for the future of the Netflix deal with Marvel Studios. I would love to see it take off the way the cinematic universe has and really help add to the most ambitious film franchise there has ever been. What do you think? Sound off below.
And don't forget your stinger.