The Defenders Review Roundup: Satisfying, But Light On Story


One week out from the show’s long-anticipated premiere, Rotten Tomatoes has compiled a preliminary critical consensus for The Defenders, Marvel and Netflix’s latest effort that brings together the street-level heroes of Harlem and Hell’s Kitchen.

Comprised of eight episodes in total – down from the usual allotment of 13 – the Powers That Be provided critics (us included!) with four episodes prior to broadcast, so bear in mind that these reviews aren’t necessarily indicative of the full product. Even still, barring some dramatic end-game twist, it appears as though The Defenders comes up short in the story department, with multiple outlets pointing to the uninspired villain (Sigourney Weaver’s Alexandra) and slow-burning narrative as cause for concern.

Only time will tell if the remaining four episodes can atone for those shortcomings, but until we have further details for you to peruse, you can take a deep dive into this preliminary wave of reviews, beginning with our own.

WGTC: 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.

Empire: It’s a long-anticipated crossover series that delivers some engaging character clashes, but which fails — in the first half at least — to up the ante story-wise.

TV Guide: For some fans coming in expecting fireworks immediately, this might seem to be a detriment; but I’d argue that’s where the Netflix model excels.

ComingSoon: For fans, this is definitely worth a watch, though getting to the actual story might be frustrating for some. When the team up finally does happen, it’s pretty satisfying.

Included below are four more snippets from this critical consensus, including two “rotten” verdicts that claim all four Defenders are better off on their own. Ouch.

Washington Post: The coming together of the streaming service’s four superhero shows — each with varying styles on how to be a hero — works in part because of how they focus on why such a get-together shouldn’t work at all.

Collider: So with that in mind, I am setting the Defenders somewhere between Daredevil and Luke Cage. It’s something new, but it has a lot of problems.

Uproxx: It would be nice if, at some point, both show and team could justify their existence as something more than a package Marvel put together years ago in the hopes everything would work out.

USA Today: Some acts are just better off going solo.

All eight episodes of The Defenders will be available to stream from August 18th. But in light of these early reviews, what are your thoughts going into the show’s premiere? Indeed, do you consider Netflix’s ensemble series to be a must-see? Or one that you’ll place on the back-burner?

Source: RT