Season 1/ Episodes 1-2/ Netflix
[Note: If you haven’t watched Jessica Jones yes, go do it now because it’s worth it and this post will liberally spoil everything.]
Now that it’s been a couple weeks, pretty much everyone’s gotten a chance to check out Jessica Jones on Netflix. You’ve got those like myself that watched the entire season in one day. Then you’ve got everyone else that decided to be “responsible” and had to space out their viewing of the latest Marvel product. So it’s about time that we here at BNP start cranking out our recaps.
Now, because all of the episodes went up at once, we’re not going to bore you by covering all of them. Instead, we’ll tackle the first two episodes. This’ll serve as a jumping on point for those that still aren’t sure if they should invest in Jessica Jones as well as our cosign that this is a show you can bet the house on.
Within the first two minutes of Jessica Jones, it’s blatantly clear that it’s not what many would consider family friendly programming. Before even meeting out titular character, we see two lovers getting hot and heavy in a New York City alley. We later find out that this was an affair Jessica was hired to expose between a woman and her husband’s brother. Of course, the husband got upset and didn’t know his place until Jessica threw him out of her door.
After that, we get to meet the woman of the hour – Jessica Jones. A New York City private eye that uses her super strength as an added asset to finish jobs no one else quite can. Many of these come from the law office of Ms. Jeri (Carie-Anne Moss a.k.a. Trinity from The Matrix!). This leads to her serving a court summons to a flash club owner on their behalf. But she was only able to do this after lying about her identity to find out where he’d be, lifting his sports car off of the ground so he couldn’t drive off and threatening him with the laser vision she doesn’t have.
It’s in this first episode that we also see a lot of Jessica’s hidden issues starting to form. She can’t close her eyes for more than a few seconds without the help of a heavy sip of liquor for some deeper reasons. She also spends some of her sleepless nights sitting on a fire escape watching and taking pictures of a bartender across the street. While she’s doing this, the screen suddenly starts to turn purple as Jessica falls into a deep trance as a figure pops out of the shadows to whisper, “You want to do it, you know you do.” To regain control, Jessica repeats “Main Street, Birch Street, Higgins Drive, Cobalt Drive.”
The next morning, Jess wakes up to noises from her kitchen. She gets up to cautiously see what the source is and finds her neighbor, Malcolm, who’s apparently high and mistakenly in the wrong apartment. As she walks him out, she runs into Bob and Barbara Shlottman, a couple from Nebraska looking to use her private investigator services.
The Shlottmans tells Jessica that their daughter, Hope, has gone missing and they’d like her to find out why their one-time track star daughter quit the team, got a new apartment and is hardly returning their calls. Jessica investigates further and finds out that Hope’s been off somewhere with a man she supposedly met.
During another sleepless night, Jessica decided to venture closer to the bar she was spying on before. Only this time she’s found by the bartender who invites her in for a drink. He introduces himself as Luke Cage (Yes, that Luke Cage). The two introduce themselves and Jessica puts her investigative skills to the test by telling Luke more about himself than he was probably ready to hear. After about 10 minutes of backhanded flirting and looking into each other’s troubled souls, they head upstairs to Luke’s place to do the dirty deed. After getting caught up in the heat of the moment, Luke stops but Jessica lets him know she won’t break and he gives her a side eye and responds with “… you will.” [This was hilarious because neither of them knew what we all know].
Jessica heads to the bathroom and finds a picture of a woman in Luke’s medicine cabinet and suddenly bursts into tears. No one knows why, it just happens. She regains her composure, grabs her clothes and heads outside after saying goodbye to Luke.
Jessica gets back on Hope’s trail and, on a hunch, decides to visit an Asian fusion restaurant to see if Hope had been around recently. The host tells her that he’d seen her and she came with a man that requested a very specific table and meal. Jessica suddenly has a vision of herself in the same restaurant – which was then Italian – sitting in the same seat Hope did what who we can only presume was the same man. Out of panic, Jessica goes to the Shlottmans and asks them who sent them to her and they respond with an English man. She tells them to avoid any interaction with people and just go back home. By using the Hope’s credit card info, she tries to get on a last-minute flight to Hong Kong but isn’t able to.
All through the episode, we’ve seen billboards all over the city with a woman named Patricia “Trish” Walker gracing them with a smile. Now it’s time to finally meet her. Trish is having a production meeting in her penthouse kitchen when she looks out to see Jessica sitting on her balcony [who knows how she got there]. She quickly excuses her team because of the late hour and lets Jessica in, reminding her that she could use the front door.
The two seem to be at odds because of a lack of communication. Choosing to cut out all of the bulls–t, Jessica just tells Trish that she needs some cash for a case before eventually coming out and telling her that “he” is back and has taken Hope and is doing the same things he apparently did with her. Trish tries to convince her to help Hope because no one else can, but Jessica is hesitant because of the things she man made her do and what he could make her do is he gets the opportunity.
While in a cab headed to the airport, Jessica tells the driver to make a stop somewhere and goes to the hotel she suspects Hope to be in. She pulls the fire alarm to evacuate the area and goes into a room at the end of the hallway. It’s mostly dark, except for the bedroom, where she finds hope lying on the bed. When she walks into the room, she continues to have visions of the shadowy figure saying things like “Do you miss me?”
She asks Hope is Kilgrave, the man that took her, was around. Hope tells her that he hasn’t been around for hours. Jessica calls the Shlottmans and says that she’s found Hope. But when Jessica tells Hope to get out of the bed, she responds by telling her she can’t. Jessica realizes that Kilgrave, who apparently has powers of control, told her to not leave the bed. Jessica has to forcibly carry her away because she’s fighting for her life to go back.
Back at her apartment, Jessica explains that Kilgrave’s control wears off eventually, but it takes time and distance to do so. So she needs to get as far away as possible. Hope, now away from her captor, starts to remember all of the things that Kilgrave forced her to do and starts to fall to the pressure of the situation. Jessica asks her to list the streets she lived around as a kid as a coping mechanism – similar to what she was shown doing earlier – before admitting to Hope that she was once in the same exact position. She then forces Hope to verbally say that nothing that happened to her was her fault.
Hope’s parents then come in and hug their daughter. She then tells the family to drive west until they get to Omaha. Hope hugs Jessica and the Shlottman’s leave, with Jessica preparing to head to the airport right behind them. But, as Jessica watches the Shlottman’s get on the elevator, she sees Hope reach in her purse for a gun and hears multiple gunshots go off.
She meets them on the first floor to the sight of Hope pulling the trigger of the now empty gun before she looks at Jessica and tells her to smile. Hope then comes to her senses and sees what happened and Jessica walks away as she realizes that this was all a trap set up by Kilgrave because he knew Jessica would rescue her. She then decides it’s time to stop running.
The episode starts off with Jessica in an interrogation room at a police station. She’s a suspect in the murder of the Shlottman’s because they were leaving her apartment/office before their deaths by the girl she was hired to find. While being interrogated by Detective Oscar Clemons (Clarke Peters aka Lester Freamon from The Wire), she admits that she would’ve stopped Hope if she knew there were any reason to. Detective Clemons tells her that her apartment was a crime scene and NYPD officers investigated people she had taken pictures of – including Luke.
Jessica instantly headed to Luke’s bar to explain herself. She tells him that she was only taking pictures because a man had hired her to see if his wife was having an affair. Understandably perturbed, Luke tells Jessica get out because he doesn’t “need the police all up in his business.”
We then see Jessica in her bathroom looking at her own reflection. She tries to convince herself that it’s better to be alone with Kilgrave after her and wonders how he cheated death.
Jessica goes to visit Hope in county jail to see if she can give her any tips on how to find Kilgrave. Hope, who appears to be in the grey area between in shock and losing her grip with reality, mostly stares out the window and asks Jessica how well she can jump. She asks this because Kilgrave apparently made her jump for hours until she no longer could. She then tells Jessica that everything that happened is her fault because she didn’t stay to make sure Kilgrave was truly dead in “the accident.” After Jessica tells her she plans to catch Kilgrave, Hope gets upset and yells that she shouldn’t. Hope then tells Jessica that she should kill herself. Jessica admits that she probably should, but she’s the only person that can prove her innocence.
Jessica takes it on herself to go to Jeri Hogarth to represent Hope. But Hogarth figures it a lost cause and refuses to have anything to do with it until Jessica convinces her that she can prove Kilgrave exists and is able to use mind control. Meanwhile, Jeri’s assistant has been practically knocking down her office door to tell her her wife is on the phone furious because “she knows.”
Trish finds Jessica on the street and lets her know she’s worried about her getting caught up with Kilgrave again. She even suggests that Jessica live there like she’ll be safe there and doesn’t have superpowers of her own. She reminds her that literally anyone she comes across could be under Kilgrave’s control, including “the talk show host who was my best friend.” [Ouch.]
Back at the bar, one of Luke’s ladies’ comes by for a visit. They get into a fight because Jessica told him she’s not only married, but her husband knows. The woman doesn’t believe him until he tells her her husband hired a private investigator and showed her pictures.
Meanwhile, Jessica starts having flashbacks of a night in the past with Kilgrave after looking through old newspaper clippings. She remembers Kilgrave calling out to her but she’s somehow able to walk away and turn around in time to see a bus veer off and hit him.
We also meet Jessica’s loud upstairs neighbors, a pair of twins that are way too close, named Robyn and Ruben. You can instantly tell that Ruben has a thing for Jessica and Robyn is way too overprotective.
The next day, Jessica sneaks into a hospital and walks around without being stopped by anyone – scary thing is this is actually how hospitals work. She breaks into a nurses’ locker and puts on a pair of the brightest scrubs you’ve ever seen and eventually finds out that Kilgrave didn’t go to the hospital the night after the accident. But one thing we do see is that the woman who died that night was the woman Luke has a picture of in his bathroom.
When Jessica comes home, she finds a man in her apartment and goes straight into attack mode only to find out he was sent by Trish to fix her door that’s been broken since the first scene in episode 1.
The next morning, Jessica heads out to see the ambulance driver that picked up Kilgrave. He’s now on dialysis and unable to talk or really move because he gave up, not one, but both of his kidneys. Also, the expensive dialysis machine that’s the only thing keeping him alive supposedly came from an “angel.” While asking him what happened, the man starts to write the letters “KIL” on a piece of paper and she assumes he’s about to identify Kilgrave. But, instead, he goes on to write “KILL ME” because he doesn’t want to continue living like this. Jessica refuses and takes the piece of paper away before the man’s mother can see it and leaves after writing down some information that was on the machine.
She returns home to yet another unexpected visitor. This is the downside to living in your office. This time, the visitor is the woman she was taking pictures of with Luke. He confronts her and reveals that her husband not only didn’t hire her, but had no idea of the affair. She tells Jessica that she can have Luke if she wants and that her husband and some of his lacrosse buddies (HA!) are going to the bar to confront Luke.
Jessica rushes to the bar to make sure no one gets hurt, only for a fight to break out anyway. During the fight, it becomes clear that Luke also has superpowers – namely bulletproof skin and super strength.
She gets a call the next morning for the company that provides the dialysis machine to get the information of the person that leases the machine. She finds out it’s a doctor that was once at the top of his field but now only teaches at a local community college. It turns out he was on the run from Kilgrave after he made him extract the ambulance drivers’ kidneys. Even though he only needed one, Kilgrave felt the need to be “whole” and demanded both. But the doctor also tells Jessica of a possible weakness for Kilgrave – propofol or sufentanil, which puts its user completely under, which would make him completely unconscious and unable to use his powers. Jessica puts the doctor on the line with Jeri and he explains everything about his experience. Jeri then decided to take on Hope’s case.
We then see that Trish has been studying Krav Maga and made her spare bedroom into a dojo, which leaves her covered in bruises.
The next scene shows reveal just how Kilgrave uses his powers. He walks up to a random apartment building and tells the owners that they’re happy to see him – even though they’ve never met him – and will let him live with them. He then tells both of the children to hide in their closet, even though the eldest daughter has to go to the bathroom. And, just like magic, everyone does what he says. Even if they don’t want to, they have no control. You even see a puddle of urine come out from under the closet door.
After taking a shower, Jessica walks in her bedroom to find Luke Cage waiting for her telling her that he saw her use her super strength. He then grabs a buzz saw, lifts up his shirt and brings it to his stomach. When a normal person would’ve been normally ripped to shreds, his skin is so rough that it breaks the saw.
Thus concludes our jumping on point for you guys. Jessica Jones is a dark show that tackles so many issues from PTSD to abuse which is handled extremely well. We don’t know how many time we can say that this is one of best shows Marvel has produced and sets the bar extremely high for all of the others.