By: James Neyer ~Staff Writer~
“Doing something… good, it helps with the self-loathing,” This quote by Jessica Jones (Kristen Ritter) to her lawyer friend Jeri Hogarth (Carrie Ann Moss), seems to define who Jessica Jones is as she struggles to overcome her Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder in “Jessica Jones.”
This Netflix-exclusive show is different from any other Marvel shows. Following in the footsteps of “Daredevil,” “Jessica Jones” is a much darker and serious display than the movies, fitting into the noir style. But what sets it apart the most from the other Marvel shows and movies is its relatability.
The villain, Kilgrave, does not try to destroy the world, but instead is more personal, focusing on Jessica herself. Kilgrave (David Tennant,) does not care about anyone else other than Jessica and punishes anyone who gets in his way. What makes Kilgrave even scarier is his power to convince people to do what he wishes. If he tells you to take your suit off and give it to him, you do so. The same goes if he tells you to turn a blender on and slowly stick your hand in. Even though some part of you knows that it is horrible, you are compelled to follow his wishes. Kilgrave is just in it for the ride, taking what he wants with no consequence for himself and no care for others.
Jessica had been under Kilgrave’s control for a long time until an accident allowed her to break free. Traumatized by the incident, Jessica becomes an alcoholic, rage-filled private investigator who struggles to put the past behind her. When Kilgrave returns, she fights against him, struggling to rectify the wrongs that he has done and what he made her do.
By framing the show around Jessica’s PTSD and trauma, it becomes relatable for the average viewer. While no one can control people the way Kilgrave does, there are people out there who try to do so. Kilgrave works because he is a reminder of the evil in our world and the evil that we are capable of. Tennant’s portrayal of Kilgrave is incredibly charming and suave, making you fall in love with him as he destroys the lives of everyone around him. The characters are all damaged, and their struggles and pain let us relate to them in ways the movies and other shows have not been able to so far.