Marvel shows Luke Cage & Iron Fist were both suddenly cancelled the past couple weeks. Both shows were axed after two seasons. However, this doesn’t mean these two are gone forever. Beyond their link to the other Defenders, the two could team up for a Heroes for Hire series. Will Netflix try to bring these characters together, like their comic book roots? If they do, they may want to look to Thor: Ragnarok for guidance.
Many have theorized the shows’ cancellations may be due to Disney moving forward with its own streaming service. Disney is putting together its own line-up of Marvel shows, starring notable characters like Loki and Scarlet Witch. This new Disney development could mean a battle with Netflix for ownership of the various Marvel shows. Whether Disney snatches the Defenders up, or if Netflix can keep its heroes, both Luke Cage and Danny Rand are still available for hiring.
If these characters are allowed back on screen, why not bring them together? Fans could get both its fallen heroes for the price of one series. Getting the duo back together, and making it one program, would be a great way to bring them back. The two of them had some of the strongest scenes in Netflix’s team up series The Defenders. There’s also still a lot someone could explore with the dynamic between them. Combining the two also means we can enjoy the characters for half the time commitment. Pulling the best from both cancelled shows, and making a new combo series, could be a great way to freshen up the characters.
This potential team-up series is similar to the blueprint Marvel’s laid out for one of its biggest characters. If you want a great example of how Marvel freshened up some movie heroes, look no further than Thor: Ragnarok. In Ragnarok, Thor and The Hulk teamed up along with other Asgardians to take down Hela. Ragnarok was far and away the best Thor film AND the best Hulk film. Creating a new kind of movie for these characters reinvigorated them, as solo characters and as a pair. If there are any characters that could do with a similar shake-up, it’s the two newly series-less heroes.
Netflix making a more comedic series would be a nice change of pace. Their various Defenders series are all the same general gritty tone. The third Thor film got way more praise than the other films, largely due to its director, Taika Waititi. Waititi made Thor: Ragnarok far more comedic and light-hearted than the Thunder God’s other solo outings. Putting a goofier spin on the Luke Cage & Danny Rand dynamic could definitely reinvigorate any new series. It’s like how the various DC shows on the CW differ in tone. Arrow is a gritty action series, while The Flash is way more campy and light-hearted. Giving Marvel a new show with a new tone would be refreshing.
Also, this pairing would bring out the best of Iron Fist. Marvel’s Iron Fist was the lowest rated series out of all the Marvel-Netflix team-ups. Similarly, the Hulk’s two solo movies were horrifically bad, and he hasn’t had his own movie since. But The Hulk was a main character in Ragnarok, and a delightful character at that. If Marvel could find new ways of incorporating Hulk, Netflix could do the same with the Immortal Iron Fist. Focusing on a team narrative with Danny, as opposed to his boy-billionaire-whatever routine, would give Rand a much-needed rebranding.
It’s also clear that the teams behind both shows aren’t ready to say goodbye to these two heroes. Take Finn Jones’ Instagram post, following the news of Luke Cage’s cancellation. Or take the fact that Luke Cage was far into development for a third season, with several scripts already complete. Heck, some Iron Fist skeptics were swayed after the series had a strong sophomore season. Unless Netflix is forced to hand these heroes over to Disney, it’d be a shame to say goodbye.
Putting the heroes in a new style of show could help both reach their full potential. The two characters could live on in a series that could inject some fun into the MTVU. Just because Disney & Netflix can’t get along doesn’t mean Luke & Danny can’t. Netflix has a chance to use these heroes to make something new. A Heroes for Hire series could be the breath of fresh air that Ragarok was for the Thor franchise.
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