Remember the halcyon days of Marvel on Netflix?
We experienced some of the most detailed and thought-provoking television in a long time with the collection of “The Defenders.” It was breathtaking in some shows, enough to gag and lose your breath for others.
Streaming series like Jessica Jones, Luke Cage, and the unmistakable near perfection of Daredevil had comic nerds in euphoria. (Then, Iron Fist Season One happened, but that’s another story.)
Marvel was feeling themselves so they strengthened their other TV properties like Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., and Agent Carter. Captain America’s squeeze didn’t last, nor did a couple of other shows like Inhumans and Cloak & Dagger. That didn’t stop these amazing creators who went on to FOX with The Gifted, Legion, and The Runaways.
Ah well, such is life with TV…and Kevin Feige’s fiefdom.
Shortly after the rumors began to singe the hairs on the back of our necks about a “Plus-sized” streaming adventure, Netflix began cancelling excellent TV series causing a near riot against the streaming tyrant and its evil empire of the Mouse.
It was all about land ownership and squatting rights. Now that cable and satellite TV has proven to be a blood-sucking leech on our pocketbooks, streaming has proved to become the new leech.
A report from THR tried to quell all the gossip and discovered the decision to cancel the Marvel shows was Netflix’s and it all had to do — like everything — with money (e.g., high licensing costs, low subscriptions and audience buy-in). These companies wanted to have an ownership stake, so Disney took their ball and went home, destroying some great TV in the process.
Gone But Not… Nah, They’re Gone
That’s the thing with great TV series coming to an end — while we are writing countless petitions with #SaveDaredevil and the like. real people are involved. Hundreds, sometimes thousands, are employed to make these shows.
Pulling the plug does much more than ruin our binging; folk lose their jobs. And now, that those shows are gone, people have to be next.
Marvel TV senior vp current programming and production [sic] Karim Zreik and members of his team will join the Marvel Studios group. He will continue to oversee current projects in production. Layoffs are expected to come as select roles will be eliminated in the near-term as a result of the reduction in volume. Sources say a couple dozen employees will be let go from the company.
Jeph Loeb was the mastermind behind Marvel TV, but since there can only be one king, Loeb is taking his chariot elsewhere so Feige can reign supreme. The other projects like Hulu’s slate of animated comedies (e.g., MODOK, Hit-Monkey, Tigra & Dazzler and Howard the Duck, plus the mashup The Offenders) and live-action drama Helstrom will remain on course.
(That is, until Feige kills them off too, then Zreik may be shopping for work too.)
Now that Kevin Feige is Chief Creative Officer for all Marvel broadcasts, the MCU may bridge into TV. Unfortunately, that means the superb casting like Mike Colter as Luke Cage, Charlie Cox as Daredevil, and the amazing Vincent D’Onorfio as Wilson Fisk may be recast. That would suck out loud.
Yet again, such is life in TV. Long live the king.