Jessica Jones Recap 1.5 AKA The Sandwich Saved Me
This episode is all about how to be a hero.
Pre-Kilgrave Jessica worked a lot of boring menial jobs that neither inspired her nor used any of her talents. Trish encouraged her to do more and be more but Jessica hid behind sarcasm and anger and chose to remain an underachiever. Until one night she saved a little girl’s life while dressed as a hero
Trish embraced her inner Tomoyo Daidouji (Cardcaptor Sakura’s BFF who designs and creates all of Sakura’s ‘magical girl’ outfits) and jumped in to manage Jessica’s budding career as a superheroine. But it was not to be because Kilgrave witnessed Jessica beating up a gang of baddies and decided to claim her as his toy.
Pre-Kilgrave Malcolm was an idealistic social worker, an everyday hero. Now he’s a junkie willing to stalk and photograph Jessica for drugs even after Kilgrave’s influences wear off. He was the victim Jessica saved in Kilgrave’s presence that fateful night she unwittingly and unwillingly became a Kilgraver — which is a whole new level of evil manipulation on the part of the Purple Man. Not only did he mind-control Jessica to do terrible things, he got the man she saved hooked on drugs and set him up in the apartment next to her to keep an eye on her. He turned her heroic deeds against her to make it clear he can turn everyone and she can’t save anyone. Kilgrave is truly the worst.
Pre-Kilgrave Simpson was apparently not just a cop but a special forces army ranger. His skills include tracking, kidnapping, sniping, and torture. And he’s now sleeping with Trish as well as working with Jessica which, in his eyes at least, makes him a part of the team. And when I say ‘a part of the team’ he hears ‘in charge of the team’. He walks and talks all over Jessica and her plans and mostly dismisses Trish except to passive aggressively prop her up. Once just after Jess tells her she can’t do it because she doesn’t know how. Simpson knows how because it’s how he operates, compliment and cajole in order to control. He’s insidious because, unlike Kilgrave, he’s not the villain. He’s on the side of the heroes and certainly considers himself a hero. As for me, I’m going to call him Gaston from now on.
Trish is all of us normal type folk who get excited at the idea of being a hero and making a difference and wearing a fun costume and choosing a cool name. Despite Jess and Gaston’s misgivings she does get to join their Kidnap Kilgrave Gang — but she gets tazed as soon as the action starts, goes down first, and beats herself up about it. Trish is super supportive of Jess and Jess is not great at being super supportive of Trish (or anyone). Trish is also supportive of Gaston and he finds it and her adorable.
It’s very interesting to me that Jess and Gaston’s flaws do not keep them from being (super)heroes, just the opposite really — Jess’s recklessness and Gaston’s machismo is what drives their heroic instincts. But Trish’s overthinking and lack of confidence in her abilities are her roadblock to (super)heroism.
Jess, Trish, and Gaston fail to kidnap Kilgrave and give away much of their plan doing it so the balance of power has tipped in Kilgrave’s favor. And he can still use Malcolm against Jessica because she cares. She’s not great at being traditionally supportive but she’s a genius at telling it like it is. She gives Malcolm a condensed and personalized version of her tirade in the last episode: get over your damage because everybody has some. And then she leaves it to him to choose drugs or hope. He throws the drugs away and Jessica gives Kilgrave what he wants in exchange for Malcolm’s life.
Jessica is the patron saint of damaged people which is probably the most heroic thing anyone can be.
Jess uses her super strength to con a gross pick up artist who harasses Trish because she’s the hero we deserve.
There’s a great sequence where Jess and Gaston are on either side of soundproof glass and they each rant about the other while smiling.
Kilgrave tells Jessica “you like Chinese” and it’s the most chilling use of his powers yet.