Is Jessica Jones our new kind of hero, a tortured reluctant hero? Is she derived from a reflection of Frank Miller and Alan Moore’s anti-hero work from the 1980’s? What is it about Jessica Jones or the Netflix show that is seducing us?
When you think about some elements of her backstory, it’s commonplace. She is a hero who lost her parents at a young age. Superman lost his parents. Batman lost his parents. Spider-man lost his parents. Nothing new there.
Jessica was abducted and raped. That’s less common but it still happens. In 2015, Batwoman was repeatedly abused by Nocturna while in a hypnotic state. Green Arrow was raped by Shado while he was unable to discern reality. Men and women have been sexually assaulted in comics and unfortunately in the real world. Here is a link to DC characters who have suffered, Marvel wiki didn’t have a similar list.
What is it about Jessica Jones that makes her so painfully appealing? When you watch the Netflix show you’re tortured by her but drawn to her simultaneously.
She is a complex dichotomy
She’s smart, witty, intuitive while also drinking herself into a stupor. She is loving and compassionate with her sister and innocents yet flawed, violent and quick-tempered. She’s a thin attractive woman who can punch through walls and toss full grown men like they were Barbie dolls. She’s brave and resourceful even though her past included devastating events beyond her control.
She is subtly violent.
When you think of Wonder Woman or some other iconic figure you know how they will react. With Jessica Jones, there is joy in knowing that you can’t know how she will react if she reacts at all. Externally she shows so little emotion, a whisper of a smile, a subtle grimace or a furrowed brow. She suffers internally from the devastation and guilt of her past, especially while under the control of Kilgrave. Sometimes living with that trauma drives her into a whiskey bottle other times it drives her to punch someone.
She is a voice that’s heard.
In our world, workplace and college campuses there are women who have been sexually assaulted. Too often those women are disregarded or discredited for bringing the crime into the light. Jessica Jones is a sexually assaulted woman who cannot be hushed. She is a powerful and forceful woman who is fighting to make sure this doesn’t happen to another woman. That’s an important calling!
The 2nd season of Jessica Jones starring Krysten Ritter, David Tennant, Rachael Taylor and Mike Colter comes out March 8th, 2018. Let the binge begin!
Check out Jessica Jones tumblr for Jessica Jones GIF’s
– Ron C.