How Netflix’s Marvel TV Heroes Were Defeated by the Changing Media Business

“Jessica Jones” closes out a four-year partnership that ended far sooner than anyone expected

Netflix’s street-level Marvel TV heroes have bested villains like The Kingpin, Kilgrave and The Hand, but in the end, Jessica Jones and the rest of The Defenders encountered one enemy they were no match for: the media industry.

On Friday, Netflix will debut the third and final season of “Jessica Jones” — the final season of any of its Marvel TV superheroes — ending a partnership that once looked to be as long-lasting as the Marvel’s big-screen MCU. But while Marvel TV chief Loeb promised a “very satisfying ending to that particular story,” the rest of Marvel’s Netflix universe is going to be left hanging.

“We didn’t know, when we were making that show, that even ‘Daredevil’ had been canceled,” Loeb told TheWrap last month. “At that point, we knew we had lost ‘Iron Fist,’ but other than that, we were living under the impression that this was going to go on.” Loeb wasn’t the only one surprised by Netflix pulling the plug on The Defenders.

In 2015, the Netflix/Marvel Television partnership appeared to have a long future ahead. The shared…

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