What the hell is going on with Marvel's Netflix shows?

At first, it seemed like The Defenders were immune to the ‘snap’ that wiped out 50 per cent of the universe’s population in Avengers: Infinity War. Yet in the past week or so, the group has all of a sudden been cut in half by cancellations.

First, Marvel and Netflix announced that the somewhat problematic Iron Fist had come to an end after just two seasons, even though Danny Rand’s sophomore outing actually packed more of a punch than the first.

In a joint statement, the two companies revealed the news without giving a specific reason why the cancellation was taking place, although it was hinted that “the immortal Iron Fist will live on” in Marvel’s other Netflix shows.

Disappointed fans took solace in the fact that Rand would probably return next in season three of Luke Cage – but these hopes were soon to be pulverised when Mike Colter’s show was cancelled too, just a few days later.

Some fans suspected that it was Marvel’s owner Disney that had achieved what the likes of Davos and Bushmaster could not, defeating our heroes once and for all, but it was later revealed that these cancellations were actually down to Netflix. (According to The Hollywood Reporter, the main reason behind the cancelation was “creative differences”.)

Heroes for Hire

However, all hope might not be lost just yet. Just like Elektra rose from the dead in The Defenders, so too could Iron Fist and Luke Cage return together in a brand new show.

Back in the summer, Netflix executive Cindy Holland hinted that new Marvel and Netflix properties might spin out from what we’ve already seen, while it’s common knowledge that Danny and Luke work together in Marvel comics as the crime-fighting duo Heroes For Hire.

Given that both of these cancellations arrived suddenly out of the blue, it’s entirely possible that Marvel and Netflix are setting the stage for a new team-up show. If so, then Iron Fist’s cameo in Luke Cage season two could have acted as a pilot of sorts, helping the powers that be decide whether a Heroes For Hire show could work moving forward.

Further hints of this have also been spotted on social media. The official Iron Fist account shared a picture of Rand with a caption declaring that “the story is never over”, and the Luke Cage account then capitalised on the show’s most popular slogan, posting the line “always forward”.

Iron Fist‘s lead Finn Jones also chimed in with an image on Instagram of the two heroes combining their strength as one.

Daughters of the Dragon

You don’t need to be a detective like Misty Knight to read between the lines here – although there’s another possibility to consider, too. Instead of merging Iron Fist and Luke Cage into a Heroes For Hire series, there’s also a chance that Marvel and Netflix might prioritise Knight (Simone Missick) and Colleen Wing (Jessica Henwick) instead, giving them their very own Daughters of the Dragon show.

In the comics, these two heroines are a mighty force to be reckoned with in their own right, and the fan response to their small-screen counterparts has been huge. Marvel is finally making a concerted push to diversify with female-led movies like Captain Marvel and Black Widow, so a Daughters of the Dragon show could help address this imbalance further, while still providing Iron Fist and Luke Cage with the chance to continue on fighting in supporting roles.

If confirmed, Daughters of the Dragon could be the closest we come to seeing The Defenders reunite. As it stands now, the first team-up series isn’t slated to return either.

Phase 4 or phased out?

With all these cancellations, though, fans are understandably worried about the shows currently left standing. Not even the combined might of Daredevil, The Punisher and Jessica Jones might be enough to stave off the powers that be if Netflix decides to axe its Marvel line-up completely.

While the latter two currently have new seasons in production, there’s still no word yet on whether Netflix’s flagship Marvel show will be renewed for a fourth season. Showrunner Erik Oleson told EW that he’s “very hopeful” to see Daredevil continue, but there’s been no official word on the matter as of yet.

If Daredevil isn’t renewed in the coming weeks, then it’s possible that Marvel might try to move these small-screen properties on to the new Disney streaming service that’s set to debut in 2019. However, as we previously mentioned, the ball still seems to be in Netflix’s court for now.

Instead, it’s far more likely that the rest of Netflix’s Marvel line-up will be gradually phased out in favour of those aforementioned spin-offs. In cinemas, heroes like Thor and Captain America will soon have to step aside in favour of a new vanguard in Phase 4 and it would make sense if the Marvel and Netflix shows do the same.

Sure, Luke Cage is bulletproof and the Iron Fist is immortal, but their stories aren’t, so it might be time soon for new heroes to take their place on the streets of New York City.

Daredevil season 3 is on Netflix now. Season 2 of The Punisher and Season 3 of Jessica Jones will hit Netflix some time in 2019.

Source: Read Full Article