Jessica Campbell lives in the borough of Queens, New York, and she spent her first years there, in fact she went to high school with her neighbour Peter Parker. Her life did take a tragic turn however when a trip to Disneyland which her father’s boss Tony Stark had given to the whole family as a gift, went awry. On the way back, and while she was arguing with her brother, the family car collided with a military convoy carrying dangerous chemicals. Everybody died apart from Jessica, who spent several months in a coma. She only woke up when the Fantastic Four were fighting Galactus for the first time, in the middle of a great cosmic ray beam.
When she woke up, she was adopted by the Jones, and took their surname. She soon discovered that she had superhuman strength and endurance and, even more, that she could fly. A fight between Spider-Man and Sandman – which takes place in her very classroom – convinces her to become a superhero, taking on the pseudonym Jewel.
Despite her powers, her innocence and youth let her down and she ends up under the telepathic control of Zebediah Killgrave, alias Purple Man. He can control her will, making her work (and kill) for him, and making her participate in acts which she finds horrific.
It is only down to a mixture of will power and good luck that allow her to stop being so self absorbed and eventually to escape. Between this incident and after recovering at the S.H.I.E.L.D. facilities, she becomes a detective with her own agency, Alias Investigations, and swears that she will never try to be a hero again nor use her pseudonym.
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Jessica Jones is a broken toy who is not happy to be treated as such. It is undeniable that her experience under the control of Kilgrave, including the murders and depraved crimes that she was forced to take part in, takes away the innocence and ingenuity which had lead Jessica to decide to help others under the name Jewel. It is not just this, but there is also a medical diagnosis of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder.
All of this makes her a suspicious and lonely person – qualities, let’s remember which are very useful for a private investigator – and it is very difficult for her to maintain personal relationships. In fact, at first, only whisky and other addictions make it bearable for her to carry on living with the guilt of what happened when she was controlled by Kilgrave. Fortunately, her relationship with Luke Cage gives her a chance to reconstruct her life with a new family around her, especially her daughter Danielle.
Friends and Enemies
The pain of having lost so many loved ones – even herself – means that she does not form very strong bonds with the majority of people who cross her path. Even so, her work as a detective means that she is well known to the majority of the street-level fighters of the Marvel Universe. She is a part of the Defenders along with Captain America and Tony Stark. Obviously her closest relationship is with Luke Cage who will both try to make themselves less reclusive and will eventually get married.
As well as Kilgrave, either alone or with others, Jessica has faced Dr. Octopus, Rhino and the Green Goblin amongst many others and she has played an important role in many of the events in the Marvel Universe. Including her escape to Canada with her daughter to dodge the Super-Human Registration Act during the Civil War and when she was the detective who identified the Skrull clones during Secret Invasion.
Marvel Cinematic Universe
Jessica Jones has her Alias Investigations office on Netflix in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Played by Kristen Ritter, in the series which started in November 2015 we meet Jessica shortly after she escaped from Kilgrave’s control. The antagonist in the series is Purple Man who shows his considerable powers of mental control and is chillingly portrayed by David Tennant, making him one of the best villains in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Furthermore, the series is riddled with characters who are much more than they seem and are in fact little Easter Eggs for the vigilant viewer.
Just to give a few examples, her adopted sister Trish Walker – played by Rachel Taylor – is really the superhero Hellcat and because of the pills he takes and how they effect him, it is suggested that the police man Will Simpson is really the villain Nuke. This all increase the feeling of interconnectivity and that there is a plan behind every series, every season and every film. Furthermore, the Jessica Jones series is the first time that we see Luke Cage on screen, played by Mike Colter and the character of Jeri Hogarth, played by Carrie-Ann Moss (yes, Trinity from The Matrix) is the first lesbian to appear in the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
Just like her other Netflix pals, Daredevil, Iron Fist and Luke Cage, Jessica Jones will be back in 2017 in the 8 episode series of the Defenders fighting against a mysterious as of yet unveiled character played by Sigourney Weaver.
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Jessica Jones’ powers have double origins. On the one hand, she was exposed to radioactive chemical material, like Daredevil, but it is also the result of having been bombarded by rays of cosmic energy, like the Fantastic Four. Be that as it may, Jessica Jones has superhuman strength and endurance which means that she can kill a man in one fell swoop, heal faster and reduce the effectiveness of any blows she receives. Even though, the limits of her powers have not yet been tested, neither by her or by an enemy.
In addition, to avoid succumbing to Purple Man’s mental artifices, the psychic mutant Jean Grey gives her a series of ways of being able to resist telepathic attacks. Curiously, she even has the ability to fly at subsonic speeds, she does not want to fly unless there is no other option, basically because she gets dizzy.
Radar de Poder Jessica Jones
It is impossible to understand Jessica Jones without her “relationship” with Purple Man. The time that she was abducted and the obsession that Kilgrave has for her have both affected her life, along with the weight of her powers making nothing ever seem certain. This nihilism, coupled with whisky, cigarettes and obviously her job make it seem like a 1950’s film Noir which has been transplanted to the Marvel Universe. The fact that she is an abused woman who has managed to rebuild her life make her both an example to, and at the same time a broken reflection of our society.
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