Marvel TV Boss On The Defenders And Its Eight-Episode Arc


If there’s one common complaint that’s so often leveled against Netflix’s roster of Marvel series, it’s that each show – be it Iron Fist, Daredevil, Luke Cage, or the really rather excellent Jessica Jones – could do with a little trimming.

Much like the upcoming Punisher spinoff, all four of those standalone series stretch for 13 episodes in total, but what makes The Defenders so different, and potentially so special, is that Marvel and Netflix’s ensemble is set to unfold across an eight-episode arc. No longer will the story hit the ground running, only to slump around the half-way point; The Defenders has the potential to be a water-tight rendition of New York’s street-level heroes that compels viewers from first frame to last. At least, that’s the idea.

As Marvel TV’s executive vice president Jeph Loeb tells Collider, The Defenders was intentionally conceived as an eight-parter, and the show’s truncated arc has “nothing to do with cost.” Adopting a less-is-more approach will surely help allay fears that Marvel and Netflix’s team-up series is written off as a bloated, overstuffed drama without a sense of focus. And as Loeb noted to Collider, leaving the viewer wanting more is no bad thing.

It had nothing to do with cost, it was always eight. It had to do with what was the best way to tell the story and our feeling was it broke really nicely, and when you watch the show you sort of see that’s sort of Act 1 and that’s Act 2 and Act 3. You know, you have to remember that when you have that many characters you have to be able to service them, but you also don’t want to overload the audience, and you want to be able to tell a story that’s compelling and will go along, and look, if you finish the eight and wish there was 13, then good on us.

Across the board, and now that Spider-Man: Homecoming has wowed the moviegoing masses, The Defenders will be the next property to tumble off Marvel’s production line. Word is that Jeph Loeb and the creative team have crafted an entertaining adventure around those four aforementioned heroes, with our own Robert Yaniz Jr. writing that, “the tale at the heart of The Defenders isn’t particularly strong, but seeing these characters finally share the screen is an experience that makes even the low points of the Marvel/Netflix partnership well worth it.”

The Defenders will be available to stream via Netflix from August 18th. It’ll be followed in quick succession by The Punisher, but what’s your knee-jerk reaction to Loeb’s comments about Marvel’s team-up series and its truncated arc? Let us know in the usual spot.

Source: Collider