A is for the Antihero

I admit it – when Jessica Jones hit Netflix a few months back, I binged. I wanted to see what all the fuss was about. Fans and critics alike were writing like crazy about it. I even saw articles from a psychological perspective on the characters and their unique quirks, for crying out loud. And don’t get me wrong – I liked it. I wanted to see what would happen next, but I wasn’t hooked on it and felt no connection whatsoever to the characters. 

Jessica isn’t a good person. She’s a drunk, she’s viscious to other people most of the time, and she’s out for vengeance most of the season more than she’s out to rid the world of a bad guy. It’s like, ok, she did a good thing, but it doesn’t make her a hero like people come to believe she is at the end of the show. She’s definitely the antihero.

And I think that’s why people were so adamant Jessica Jones is a good show. Very, very few people in this world are genuinely out to help others all the time. Most of us are just struggling to make it through the day. There’s work, bills, and problems. Jessica deals with all of it too, in some not-so-healthy ways. She’s got her reasons, but then…so do we. We get in shitty moods. We lash out, we push people away, we hole up and try to forget about the rest of the world in various ways. We doubt our worth, and we question anyone who seems to care about us.

People like to think they’d always do the right thing, but you never really know until you’re facing the fire. And even then, your choice may not come easily. And sometimes you don’t do the right thing for the right reasons, like Jessica.

I keep thinking about the last moments of the last episode in season one, where she’s listening to all these sad messages from desperate people with a faraway look on her face like she’s trying to decide if she even wants to help them.

But she will. Sometimes when people put their faith in you, you can’t help but step up to the plate.

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