Marvel once again makes a move that could only further its dominance over TV and films. In a surprise gamble Marvel has announced that they've joined forces with Netflix to produce and distribute four new Marvel live action TV shows. Each show will focus on different street level heroes from the Marvel Universe, namely Daredevil, Iron Fist, Jessica Jones and Luke Cage. Each series will culminate in a miniseries event featuring the joining of the heroes to form The Defenders.
Each series will be based mostly in Hell's Kitchen, New York and will focus on the gritty and dark nature of the street level heroes, whereas The Marvel cinematic universe focuses on the billionaires, geniuses and demigods. Netflix has committed to at least 13 episodes for each of the four shows, with the option to extend the episode count.
With Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D doing well with the ratings, but not critically, these news shows are a chance for Marvel to reign in the television audience and create even more of a link with their big screen counterparts. It isn't clear yet whether Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D will tie into these shows, but it is quite possible as Netflix technically isn't another TV network.
Just the introduction of popular street level heroes like Daredevil and Luke Cage is a brilliant move for the comic giant. Marvel already has a strong viewership in the cinematic universe as well as one of the best shared universes out there.
In addition to this, Netflix has expanded their base to a number of countries outside The United States and is just coming out of a winning period with shows like Arrested Development and House of Cards; this move could only mean more success for the on-demand Internet streaming site.
Daredevil will come first in 2015, followed by Jessica Jones, Iron Fist and Luke Cage. Netflix believes that the beauty of this joint venture will unfold over multiple years.
With Agent's Of S.H.I.E.L.D already running, this new deal by Marvel and Netflix, and the rumours of an Agent Carter series starting Hayley Atwell swarming around the Internet, it looks like we won't be deprived of any Marvel heroes on television in the near future.