NEW YORK — “I didn’t tell you this, I got punched in the face on Wednesday.”
That was the first thing actress Krysten Ritter teased about the upcoming second season of Jessica Jones, turning to her co-star on Netflix and Marvel’s superhero-crossover series The Defenders, Charlie Cox. His reaction, along with members of the media gathered at The Defenders press event in New York on Monday, was mostly one of shock.
“In a stunt, I accidentally got an uppercut to the jaw and I got knocked out,” Ritter, who plays the titular hero Jones, elaborated. “I bit my tongue, blood everywhere. And then I got sent home, it was a whole thing.”
“You hate blood as well!” Cox responded.
“I do, and I saw the blood, that’s why [I passed out]!” she said. “Yeah, it was intense.”
Ritter’s brief anecdote from the set of Jessica Jones’ second season, which is currently filming, might imply that the series is gunning for more action after a psychologically tormenting, dour and critically acclaimed first season. But she assured that her show will still be “internal,” continuing to focus more on Jones’ psyche. Really, it’s Cox’s solo series, Daredevil, that would lend itself to more physical stunts as an action-heavy show best known for its elaborate hallway fight scenes. (And not for nothing, The Defenders has its own hallway fight scene that takes place in the third episode of its first season, which will debut on Netflix August 18.)
Of the four heroes that feature in The Defenders — Ritter’s Jones, Cox’s Daredevil, Mike Colter’s Luke Cage and Finn Jones’ Iron Fist Ritter — it’s Jessica Jones that’s been offscreen the longest, since the first season of Jessica Jones aired back in November 2015. (In the time since, the debut seasons of both Luke Cage and Iron Fist have premiered, as well as the second season of Daredevil.) As The Defenders briefly explains, Jones has spent most of this time drinking excessively and ignoring possible clients for her detective agency, following her harrowing, intimate showdown with Kilgrave (David Tennant) at the end of season one.
But like the other heroes, she’ll be forced into action to save New York from the Hand — an evil organization that’s basically the Illuminati with ninjas — and one of their leaders, Alexandra (Sigourney Weaver). Ritter said one of the high points of working on The Defenders, which filmed for nearly six months, was developing a stronger relationship with her co-stars; they all emphasized that they’ve become fast friends.
“The most exciting thing was all of us being together, working with other actors who have been through the exact same situation: carrying their own show, doing the press tour and everything that comes with that,” Ritter explained. “We were all in the exact same situation, so we felt a real camaraderie and connection because of that.”
As for Jessica Jones season two, no airdate has been set — but Netflix has confirmed a 2018 release. Ritter couldn’t say much about the forthcoming set of episodes, and how the show will follow up a villain as heinous and personal as Kilgrave. But Ritter had no shortage of praise for showrunner Melissa Rosenberg, and offered a cryptic tease about the series’ new direction.
“I would say that the first season was in Jessica’s head, and this season is in her heart.”
The Defenders is available on Netflix Aug. 18.
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