The Defenders S01E03 Recap

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If the Avengers assemble, what do the Defenders do?

This show is wasting absolutely no time in giving us answers. Any questions or suspicions that we have in one episode are answered in the one that follows. With only eight episodes in the season, versus the Netflix Marvel series’ usual thirteen, that’s understandable. But this series doesn’t at all feel rushed.

Alexandra got the Harold Meachum Death Special – several times – confirmed. With none of the side effects. To be honest, I didn’t think that was why she was so long lived, although that was kind of obvious. It is what the Hand specialises in after all. From her conversation with Elektra, she has no intention of dying. Whatever it is that she is doing now looks like it’s supposed to make her actually and not functionally immortal (in that she won’t need to die and be resurrected, she simply won’t be able to die) and Black Sky is the key to doing that or simply has a key role to play. Just when this show gives us answers, it raises new ones.

Another question that was raised concerned Danny. Specifically, his role as the Iron Fist. Alexandra let on that the Iron Fist is more than what everyone’s been told. Perhaps including Danny himself. There is that door that’s preventing the Hand from getting to whatever it is they’re looking for. From the moment they mentioned that door, I suspected that Danny would be the key. That would explain why she wants to keep him alive rather than kill him, like she said she’d done to other Iron Fists she’d encountered before.

How Jessica was with Matt, all sassy and rude, is how I wanted her to be with Misty. But she was all subdued then. Matt, having read her file and knowing about her powers etc, I think he could have let on a bit about what he used to do as the Devil of Hell’s Kitchen. Just to convince her to tell him about what happened. But he knew what he was doing.

The only reason that I guessed that Matt was following Jessica was because of the music in the scene. It wasn’t sinister in any way. It was kind of comedic actually and the scene itself was pretty funny; Jess had circled around to then herself start following Matt. Just like she had been aware that he was following her, he knew immediately that she was following him.

I know that Danny had punched Luke really hard, but it was still strange to see him ice up. I was so happy that he told Claire about Danny and not just brush off the encounter and keep it to himself. Claire called Danny immediately too. I love how she treated the two of them like children and put them in a time out to work out their differences. It was only until Danny started telling Luke about all of the mystical mumbo jumbo that I realised that Luke was the only one on the team who dealt with normal criminals.

Danny and Luke’s time out was going so well until they got to the philosophical debate about how to deal with criminals. Luke does take a softer approach to how he deals with them than Danny does. Luke doesn’t fight unless he has to because he doesn’t need to; he’s invulnerable. Whereas Danny pretty much goes in guns blazing and ready to punch someone. As exemplified in their conversation, Danny has a very black and white view of things. He doesn’t care why you’re committing a crime (especially if it’s for the Hand), you need to be stopped. This is definitely because of his wealth; he never had to struggle to feed his family. I was quite surprised to see the show bring up class privilege.

Finally our four heroes converged on Midland Financial Corporation, each getting there own lead that got them there. Danny got his by doing what Luke suggested and using his corporate connections, Jessica by infiltrating the architecture firm that John Raymond worked for, Matt followed her and Luke by visiting Cole’s mother and buying her scratch tickets. I knew that the Hand was about to kill Cole. Luke was pushing kind of hard when he was talking to him and mentioning the organisation was not a good idea. It was apparent that those scratch tickets Cole insisted Luke buy his mother would be important.

Danny’s fighting in the boardroom brawl was better than usual. At no point did it seem slow or look fake to me. I loved how Luke just burst in through the door and he and Danny more or less immediately got into a rhythm. It was funny how Matt did all of his fancy acrobatics and took the sneaky way around to get to the boardroom when Jessica just took the elevator.

The camera work in the hallway fight was very disorienting. The constant motion of the camera wasn’t the problem. It was that the tracking shots would follow the characters until they went out of frame and when it picked them back they would be shot from completely different angles with completely different framing that didn’t flow smoothly from previously. Not just that, the action they were performing just didn’t look like it logically followed what they’d been doing when they went out of frame. It was a strange way to choose to shoot it.

Matt didn’t have time to react to “Elektra” being alive. I wonder how he will when he has the time to process it. I do think that he will tell the others who she is and about what happened the last time he faced the Hand. Combined with what Danny knows, the two of them should be able to paint a pretty good picture of what they’re dealing with.

Random thoughts:

  1. Alexandra just name dropped Constantinople…
  2. “Months ago.” They’re not even trying to establish a timeline.
  3. Stick: “He’s a real handful.” Ha! Puns!
  4. Danny and Colleen are about to get this random woman killed by the Hand!
  5. Alexandra walked in so cool and calm and just…touched Danny on the shoulder. Love it!

All eight episodes of Marvel’s The Defenders are currently available for streaming on Netflix.

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About The Author

An avid reader who accidentally discovered her love and talent for writing and has loved movies for as long as she has been watching them. Stumbled into film-making and found her second love because she decided to read for a degree in it on a whim - kind of.