Alright, so I know that I am late to the party, but yesterday I finally watched season 1 of Jessica Jones. I wanted to watch it before, but adult life often means you don’t have much time. However, I am glad that I finally sat down to watch it. Apart from the series being amazing and women kicking butt, it also provided us with one of the best (if not best) villains in the MCU. Yes, I called it. David Tennant portrays Kilgrave, a psychopath who can control people by using commands, as long as he is physically present. While MCU has many great ambitious villains, it’s the charm and unpredictability of Kilgrave that makes him such an interesting villain. Let’s take a look why he might be one of the best villains of the MCU.
He doesn’t want to take over the world
Honestly, most bad guys want some control over the world. Or the universe. Or just wipe half of the population out. Kilgrave is interesting because he doesn’t really want all that. He uses his powers for selfish gains, even though it does hurt the people he uses. He has developed an obsession with Jessica Jones, and just tries to get her attention by leaving a trail of dead bodies. How romantic is that? It’s refreshing to see that someone is not out for world domination. The fact that he terrorizes individual people makes him a lot scarier, as is evident by Jessica’s PTSD in the earlier episode. There is no simple plan to destroy him, because he mostly remains unseen. While he is a joy to watch when he is on screen, the threat is enough to make anyone feel uneasy. Kilgrave is not out to control the world. He just loves to have power over people, simply because that’s all he knows.
He has an interesting backstory
In the early days of the MCU, most villains were rather generic. They didn’t really have as much of an interesting backstory as the recent films have. Because Jessica Jones is a series, it means there is a lot more time to develop characters. Kilgrave is no exception. As with many baddies, he had a rough childhood and never learned to use his powers for good. He even says so himself that he never knows when someone does something because they want to, or because he commands it. I always find the idea intriguing that someone’s past can have such a big influence on the person that they become. Some with those powers would choose life as a superhero. But if a child doesn’t get to learn what it’s like to be loved or have loving relationships, there is a chance they become bad. The strength of this character is that he is not overly ambitious. He is just a psychopath and that makes him so much more dangerous.
He just wants love, okay?
Alright, it’s not exactly okay. His methods for trying to convince Jessica to love him are quite unorthodox and messy. Not to mention that he actually abused Jessica and didn’t realise he truly wanted her until she was gone. You can’t deny he makes an effort though. Sure, most of us would be a little freaked out if we were at a police station and this guy comes in and lets the cops hold themselves hostages so that he can declare his love. And yes, it might be a little bit creepy that he bought her childhood home and decorated it in exactly the same way it used to be when Jessica lived there. Kilgrave is not exactly subtle and while he might not want to take over the world, his obsession with Jessica is a little intense. Especially how far he is willing to go to get what he wants. Or of course the things he will do if someone declares their love for Jessica. Jealousy is a bitch, after all.
There was a chance he could redeem himself
Of course, no one can undo the deaths they’ve caused, but throughout the series, we see that there is just a small chance that he might be able to redeem himself. Naturally, that didn’t last too long, but it showed that Kilgrave was not just evil to be evil. In fact, he doesn’t really think of himself as evil. Those are the most interesting villains, if you ask me. Like Thanos thinking he does the right thing by wanting to eliminate half of the population, or Voldemort thinking he does the world a service by ridding it of those with impure blood, the best villains are those who are convinced that they are right. Kilgrave is one of those villains. He doesn’t see himself as a psychopath. In fact, he even argues he does Jessica a favour by removing some annoying people from the face of the Earth. And while the hope that he was good did make me wish they would become a crime-fighting duo, it made his character all the more interesting.
He is just very charming
Nobody looks at Thanos and thinks “God, I could actually fall in love with that guy.” If you do, then I question your taste in men. The thing about Kilgrave is that he is so incredibly charming it is hard to believe that he is so bad. Of course in the first few episodes you think “Who the hell is this asshole? I hope he rots in hell.” However, Tennant plays the character so well that despite the horrible things he does, you always look forward to him gracing your screen. It makes you feel sympathy for the devil. Unlike, say a Joffrey Baratheon in Game of Thrones, who you just want to die. I think they did an excellent job casting Tennant in this. He doesn’t look like your typical villain and certainly he doesn’t look like he could pack a punch. But there is still something about his performance that makes him scary, yet fascinating. Even when he is not on screen, his impact remains. That makes an excellent villain.
Do you agree that Kilgrave is the best MCU villain? If not, who is your favourite? Let us know!