As of the 21st of April Netflix announced to the world that they will officially be raising the price of the subscription to their online distribution service, although existing customer’s rates will not be changed as of yet. This comes as the website reveals the results of their first quarter with over 48 million subscribers worldwide and a 1.27 billion dollar revenue, so the change in cost clearly isn’t a result of the company falling on hard times. Netflix tells us that the money will be spent going into buying new content, if their exclusive series’ success is anything to go by, this looks like something worth keeping an eye on.
Upcoming Netflix original series’ featuring Daredevil, Luke Cage, Iron Fist and Jessica Jones are all lined up as Netflix exclusive titles that will encompass a 13 episode run each, to make a total of 52 episodes before coming together as The Defenders, a crime fighting team of superheroes that will exist in the same universe as Joss Whedon’s Avengers films and it’s TV spinoff Agents of Shield that will reportedly run for 4-8 episodes depending on their success. The series’ have already begun creating waves as it was revealed that Cloverfield and Lost writer Drew Goddard would be writing for Daredevil as well as Melissa Rosenberg for Jessica Jones, a writer famed for her work on the “good years” of Dexter. In terms of what to expect, Joe Quesada recently told us on the Kevin Smith podcast that “this is the street level noir side of the Marvel Universe. Something that you haven’t really, really seen in any of our Marvel movies.” And goes on to say “This is not like us doing Batman Dark Knight or any of that stuff. This is very Marvel doing street level superheroes.”
This project sounds like a huge undertaking, following up on the success that the Avengers franchise experienced, the move will no doubt make a big impact on popular media and its consumers making these admittedly quite obscure characters big names in the marvel universe. Speaking on the subject, Alan Fine, President of Marvel Entertainment told us:
“This deal is unparalleled in its scope and size, and reinforces our commitment to deliver Marvel’s brand, content and characters across all platforms of storytelling. Netflix offers an incredible platform for the kind of rich storytelling that is Marvel’s specialty. This serialized epic expands the narrative possibilities of on-demand television and gives fans the flexibility to immerse themselves how and when they want in what’s sure to be a thrilling and engaging adventure.”
So who are these mysterious characters, most of which we haven’t heard of or seen in big budget media before? The most popular of the four, Daredevil is Matt Murdoch, an honest, hard working blind attorney by day and fearless crimefighter with superhuman hearing by night, Luke Cage, otherwise known as Power Man is a man with indestructible skin classically associated with Blaxploitation material, which we will hopefully not encounter in his upcoming series. The other two are Iron Fist, a mystical martial arts specialist known to the world as Danny Rand and finally Jessica Jones, an ex superhero who has abandoned her vigilantism to become a private detective. Although any of this information could be interpreted differently in the series’ themselves, so we’ll just have to watch this space for now.
With this and Netflix supposedly in talks for yet more content, they sound like they’ve got nowhere to go but up.