I hate Jessica Jones.
Well, maybe hate is too strong a word. I don’t really feel hatred for fictional characters. I save that for my enemies.
But I really don’t like her. Mainly because she’s part of a trend in superheroes that I do genuinely hate: the continuity implant character.
It goes like this — comic book nerds, like all right-thinking individuals, hate change. Don’t like change. Don’t need change.
This makes it hard for comic book companies to sell the public on new superheroes. Why would I want to read about Jewel or the Sentry or Blue Marvel when I’ve got Spider-Man, the Avengers, and Batman?
So to get around this problem comic companies started trying to sell us new characters but with the selling point that “they’ve really been here all the time.” Newbies with fake backstories to give them gravitas that they haven’t earned.
You see, here is the story of Jessica Jones: She went to school with Peter Parker and had a crush on Johnny Storm and one day there was an accident involving radiation that gave her superpowers. She became the superhero Jewel. She had an altercation with the Avengers. She good pals with Ms. Marvel. She hooks up with Luke Cage.
It’s a lovely story — but none of it happened. You won’t find Jessica Jones among Peter Parker’s classmates in 1960s issues of “Spider-Man.” Jewel did not hang out with The Avengers in the ’80s. I know. I was alive then. I was reading Marvel comics at the time. She’s not in them.
Anyway, Jessica first appeared in 2001 in the comic book “Alias,” by Brian Michael Bendis and Michael Gaydos. It was a book about a failed superheroine who now works as a private detective. It was a very dark comic. I’ve read bits and pieces but I don’t think I read the whole thing. If I did I don’t remember much about it.
My only real exposure to Ms. Jones was when she started hanging out in “New Avengers” due to her relationship with Luke Cage. They eventually marry and have a baby and waste a lot of pages in bad soap opera. I stopped reading “New Avengers” when Hawkeye left for the real Avengers and haven’t kept up with Luke and Jessie. I don’t miss them.
Still, I will be watching “Jessica Jones” when I get the chance. Netflix/Marvel did a good job with “Daredevil,” and frankly I’m not a big fan of his, either.
Since the TV/Marvel universe is completely different than the comics, they can’t shoehorn her into the Avengers so she will have to stand or fall on her own. As it should be.