The long-awaited sophomore season of Jessica Jones dropped on Netflix last week and everyone’s favorite cantankerous P.I. continued her run as one of the unluckiest supers around. Few heroes get kicked in the head by life more often than Jones, and her personality seldom makes things easier for herself. This season is no different. Here is our spoiler-free look at the 13 latest episodes of Jessica Jones.
This series often revolves around the protagonist’s struggle with being a (somewhat reluctant) hero and the knowledge she could do so much more if she weren’t constantly getting in her own way. This season is built solidly onto that frame, with the words “How far would you go” invisibly painted onto near every character. Whereas the first season was very story driven, with a cohesive plot – Catch Kilgrave, Save Hope – this season is built more on character development, with the story arc acting as a backdrop. Krysten Ritter got to spend less time drinking, and more time showing some of her acting range. Jones consistently sees things turn sideways for her, and with that kind of luck, it’s no wonder she drinks so much. Ritter does a great job of selling the character’s pain.
In addition, the three principle supporting members of the cast all get a lot more meaningful screentime in their second season. Jeri Hogarth (Carrie-Anne Moss) went from unrelenting hardass super lawyer in season one to a much more personal, and desperately portrayed character here. No longer dealing with a divorce – seeing as Wendy (Robin Weigert) is already dead, it is instead her business life she’s fighting for here, which to her seems more personal than her life did before. Hogarth’s story, while interesting and well done, only shoehorns into the overall arc on an ancillary basis. Her story intersects with Jessica’s, but mostly just as an excuse to play Devil’s Advocate. It’s not uninteresting, but it’s also not overly necessary.
Jessica’s project/neighbor/assistant/friend Malcolm also gets a much more focused role this year. Now clean of the Kilgrave-induced addiction he suffered through before, Malcolm is working at Alias Investigations, and proving himself more than worthy, absent Jessica’s acknowledgment of that fact. And while Hogarth is battling demons of her own, Malcolm is working hard on self-improvement, and his character is more interesting for it. Eka Darville actually steals a lot of the scenes he is in and puts forth one of the better performances cast-wide.
And as much as you want to root for Malcolm this season, it’s just as easy to root against Rachel Taylor’s Trish Walker character. Trish is Jess’s only real family, and as much as she was a stabilizing force for the super-detective in season one, this time around we see the other side of the coin. Trish is a good person, and she wants to do the right thing, but like all good people, she’s flawed and those flaws manage to put her and Jessica at odds. She just tends to take things to the extreme, but we do get a lot of good flashback storytelling about the sisters.
Where this season lacked for me, was in the villain. And since the advertisements kept the story pretty ambiguous, I don’t want to spoil anything there, but I will say that while the antagonist in season two manages to mirror many of the same faults our hero often displays, and because of that helps Jessica grow as a person, I understand why they did what they did. I just wasn’t as entertained by it as I was with season one’s Kilgrave story.
Overall, it’s still better than Iron Fist‘s rookie year, and probably on par with Luke Cage S1 and The Defenders, it just, for me, wasn’t as strong as season one.
|Distributor: Netflix • Studio: Marvel • Release Date: March 8, 2018|
Pacing is a little off, and the antagonist can get tiresome, but still, a really solid mystery to watch unfold, within a world that is just fun to watch.
|The Good||The supporting cast, Krysten Ritter’s emotional range|
|The Bad||Motivations and reactions of all the villains.|
|The Ugly||Patsy’s Pop Single – “I Want Your Cray Cray”|
|GEEK reviews on a scale of 1 to 10, with a 5.0 being average. Images: Netflix|