Recently, Disney announced that Netflix would be showing four Marvel superhero television shows: Iron Fist, Jessica Jones, Daredevil and Luke Cage. The four shows will also combine for a mini-series that features another super-group like the Avengers: The Defenders. Should this be news that has every comic-book fan clapping their hands with glee or should they be venting on message boards while howling with loud protests?
The thing in Netflix’s favor with these shows is the run it’s had with its original entertainment. First it pretty much shocked everyone with how great the first season of House of Cards was (then again, Kevin Spacey could do a show where he sat and read the phone book aloud to the camera and it’d be riveting). Hemlock Grove was a bit of a miss, but it quickly got back on the strong side with the utterly fascinating Orange is The New Black. So, with that early track record for producing quality shows that can draw in viewers.
Another thing that is certain to draw in people is their penchant for putting up an entire season’s worth of shows in one fell swoop. It’s going to make for some huge binge-watching sessions: all the better to get word out about it. While people are enjoying Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., the weekly wait is often aggravating. Giving those fans a chance to see it all at once is another very smart move on their part. Seeing “I BINGE-WATCHED LUKE CAGE LAST NIGHT” on comic book forums and hopefully thousands of Tweets about it are some of the best results that Marvel and Netflix can hope for.
A crucial thing is how they cast these shows. It’s one thing to have someone like Clark Gregg play Agent Coulson…fans will be watching VERY closely to see who is chosen to play Luke Cage. The state of special effect technology today is such that these people and their superpowers could be conveyed more convincingly than in past decades. That will greatly reduce any ‘cheese’ factor. Personally, I can’t wait to see who plays Cage.
This is a deal that can make everyone look good: Marvel, Netflix and those who invest in those companies. As long as these are done right, it can open the door for even more of these types of shows. Although in that case, there is the possibility of oversaturation.
Soon, though, to borrow from an old, old slogan (yes, I’m dating myself just a bit here), fans will be logging in to Netflix and saying, “Make Mine Marvel!”