As excited as many of us are about the upcoming films of the Marvel Cinematic Universe — Avengers: Age of Ultron and Ant-Man — Marvel Studios also has some TV shows debuting in 2015. There’s the mid-season premieres of Agent of S.H.I.E.L.D. and Agent Carter, which will be followed by the release of the full season of Netflix’s Daredevil, and hopefully Luke Cage, Iron Fist, and Jessica Jones, all culminating to the Defenders miniseries.
So far we only know that Daredevil stars Charlie Cox, Rosario Dawson, Vincent D’Onofrio, and others, and those of us at NYCC in October got a sneak peek of the series, but as to the show’s overall tone, how it connects to the MCU, and if we will see signature characters like Bullseye, Kingpin, and Elektra, that is still very much a mystery.
Now we are getting a little bit of insight on that from Marvel TV head Jeph Loeb, showrunner Steven S. DeKnight, and series star Charlie Cox, all of whom were recently the subject of a Daredevil piece on Entertainment Weekly.
Below are the seven things EW says you need to know about Daredevil before watching it. Hit the jump to check it out.
Daredevil will be a uniquely localized Marvel story.
Daredevil will feel like a crime story, not a superhero show.
Thor and Iron Man will still exist in the same world as Daredevil.
This Daredevil is not a “man without fear.”
Daredevil will have more graphic content than Marvel’s other TV shows, and perhaps its movies as well, but will still feel relatively family friendly.
Kingpin’s story will be almost as important as Daredevil’s (and almost as sympathetic).
Bullseye MIGHT be in the series (but not this season)
Well, there is it, confirmation that Bullseye won’t be in this season of Daredevil. There is even a slight chance that he won’t be in the series. But let’s keep hoping he will make an appearance.
Now unlike the global and internet dimensional travel we have seen in the MCU and shows like Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., Daredevil will take place in Hell’s Kitchen, according to Loeb, “It’s a very unique look at Hell’s Kitchen in New York, where Matt Murdoch grew up and continues to defend it from people who would harm the people that live there.”
Having a crime story tone would certainly make more sense for a character like Daredevil. With Iron Man having a technological buddy cop tone, Captain America with the political thriller tone, and Thor with the fantasy tone, Marvel is only showing that their heroes can fit all sorts of genres beyond the superhero.
“We really wanted to take our cue from [films like] The French Connection, Dog Day Afternoon, Taxi Driver, and make it very, very grounded, very gritty, very real,” DeKnight said. “We always say we would rather lean toward The Wire than what’s considered a classic superhero television show.” Added Loeb: “There aren’t going to be people flying through the sky. There are no magic hammers.”
It will be interesting to see how gritty the show will really be, considering that Netflix’s content can be pretty graphic. That being said, I can understand why they want to appeal to all ages by making it a bit family friendly with a dark twist.
As to the connection to the MCU, Loeb doesn’t deny that Iron Man and Thor exist in the same world, it’s just that Daredevil will focus on a different part of New York, particularly one that hasn’t been seen in the MCU.
How a man becomes the “Man without Fear” is interesting. But watching a man who isn’t afraid of anything would be boring. Cox says:
“The way I like to think about it is that he is a man with fear, but he on a daily basis decides to confront that fear and to overcome it. So the title of ‘the man without fear’ is almost a title that the public in his world gives him just because of what he does. But inside himself, he’s very afraid at times. And he finds a way to confront those fears and punch through it.”
Daredevil showrunner Steven S. DeKnight says the show will be much about the rise of Kingpin as it is about the titular hero.
“In our story, we tell the story of how he met his wife Vanessa and how they fell in love — our antagonist actually has a love story. That’s the love story you’re following, the one you’re invested in, and seeing how that affects him and changes him. I think Vincent just brings such depth to it, his performance is just astounding.”
Finally, DeKnight says that there are no plans to include Bullseye in this season. But doesn’t mean he won’t appear in the actual series.
“It’s not not to say he wouldn’t be in the series at some point. But I think if you try to jam in too many characters, it just becomes a mess. And [Bullseye’s] story was told in the last iteration of Daredevil that anybody saw. My feeling was, ‘Why repeat it?’ And honestly, if you’re looking for a juicy, multi-faceted crime drama, Wilson Fisk was the obvious choice to play the antagonist. Bullseye is a little more cut and dry. Not to say you couldn’t make him fantastic over 13 hours, but Fisk really felt like the right yin to the yang for Matt, and for what we wanted to do this season.”