We get a long look at bad guy Alexandra, a new character invented just for this series.


The long-awaited Neflix series Defenders premieres tomorrow, bringing together Daredevil, Jessica Jones, Luke Cage, and Iron Fist—all of whom have already starred in their own series for the streaming network. The final Defenders trailer teases us with our longest look yet at bad guy Alexandra (Sigourney Weaver). And she's just the right kind of evil.

In the other previews for the series, we've already seen the dynamic between the Defenders is shaky at best. Jessica and Luke are still pissed at each other, Daredevil likes to work alone, and everybody is making fun of poor Iron Fist. We've heard some funny one-liners zipping among our heroes and the repeated refrain that they are not, definitely not, a team. But they're going to have to become one to defeat Alexandra.

Weaver plays Alexandra as smooth, cool, and in control. We know almost nothing about her because she's not from the Marvel comics, so she has been created just for this show. Based on the trailers, she appears to be some kind of corporate overlord, bringing violent new meaning to "hostile takeover." She's also a master manipulator, trying to bring the Defenders over to her side (she's already working with Elektra). "We're not so different," she coos to them in a previous trailer. "We fight to get back what was once ours."

When it comes to sorting out who Alexandra is, I'm especially curious about one line in the new trailer. When the Defenders ask what she wants, Alexandra says, "The same thing I've always wanted. To bring light into the dark. To bring life where there is death." It makes me wonder whether she's a figure like the biotech corporate maniac Lucy Mirando (Tilda Swinton) in the recent Netflix film Okja. Is she working on some kind of life-extension tech, or is she after something that will create more people like the inexplicably strong Jessica and Luke?

I also think it's crucial that Alexandra be a fascinating, charismatic villain. One of the best parts of Luke Cage was the way Mariah became such an amoral mastermind, despite having the seemingly benign goal of elevating the people of Harlem. Alexandra wants to do good things for humanity, too, or so it seems. We have plenty of villains like Thanos, who are tautologically evil (bad because bad). I'd always rather watch a bad guy who has done the dark psychological work of twisting her worthy ideals into something horrific.

Can't wait to binge on this series over the weekend.