Has the Main Villain for Marvel's Jessica Jones Netflix Series Been Revealed?
Audition tapes for Marvel's AKA Jessica Jones were leaked yesterday, and although the videos were removed shortly thereafter, several websites including Comicbook.com, Comic Book Movie, and Cinema Blend all came to the same conclusion: the primary antagonist for the Netflix series is all but confirmed to be the Purple Man.
The Purple Man aka Zebediah Killgrave, appears in Jessica Jones's origin story in the Alias comic series. Jones decides to quit the superhero business and become a private investigator in large part as a result of her kidnapping by Killgrave. He uses his mind control powers to force her to submit to his will and aid in his criminal endeavors for eight months, causing her to develop a complex, Stockholm syndrome-type relationship with him.
In the audition video, Jones explains that she's in danger because an evil man from her past has returned and, most significantly, she intimates that he has mind control superpowers. She calls him "Kincade," which many have speculated is too similar to "Killgrave" to be a coincidence. There's also an audition video for the Kincade role that shows him trying to manipulate Jones.
Many will likely be happy about this development, as the Alias series by acclaimed comics writer Brian Michael Bendis has been widely praised, and Marvel can hardly go wrong with the fans by sticking close to her comics origin story. And while some feminist websites are hesitant about the use of the "rape as motivation" trope (Jones was never raped by the Purple Man, but he violated her mind and psychologically tortured her by raping other women), I think it completely depends on the writers' treatment of the storyline. As long as it's a nuanced portrayal of a character with a complicated past, and isn't reductive or gratuitous about sexual violence, it could just as easily be hailed as feminist for tackling the issue.