The Punisher and Jessica Jones Canceled

After the cancellation of Marvel’s Daredevil, Luke Cage and Iron Fist at Netflix, the streaming service has unsurprisingly given the axe to its remaining shows in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Jessica Jones starring Krysten Ritter and The Punisher starring Jon Bernthal have been officially canceled at Netflix. 

Deadline has word on The Punisher and Jessica Jones being canceled by the streaming service, which officially ends Netflix’s relationship with Marvel. The deal started strong, with promises of Daredevil, Luke Cage, Iron Fist and Jessica Jones leading to the assembly of The Defenders. But audiences and Netflix have cooled somewhat on the shows, and the streaming service decided to let them go.

Jon Bernthal gave a farewell of his own to The Punisher on Instagram:

The Punisher debuted its second back in January. It suffered a massive drop in viewership, so even if there wasn’t an existing tiff between Netflix and Disney (the latter is creating their own streaming service, after all) fueling the cancellation of Marvel’s shows, it likely would have been shut down anyway. Here’s a statement from Netflix officially saying goodbye:

“Marvel’s The Punisher will not return for a third season on Netflix. Showrunner Steve Lightfoot, the terrific crew, and exceptional cast including star Jon Bernthal, delivered an acclaimed and compelling series for fans, and we are proud to showcase their work on Netflix for years to come.”

Notice how Netflix gets that little dig at Disney+ in there at the end? That’s because Marvel’s Netflix shows can’t be moved over to Disney’s own streaming service for at least two years.

Jessica Jones, on the other hand, has been an acclaimed hit for Netflix, and they want to remind everyone of the accolades it earned them:

“In addition, in reviewing our Marvel programming, we have decided that the upcoming third season will also be the final season for Marvel’s Jessica Jones. We are grateful to showrunner Melissa Rosenberg, star Krysten Ritter and the entire cast and crew, for three incredible seasons of this groundbreaking series, which was recognized by the Peabody Awards among many others.”

We’re not sure what was determined from “reviewing” their Marvel programming other than realizing that they had canceled all the other Marvel shows, but whatever. The series still has a completed third season left to air on Netflix, and it will still arrive sometime this year. Netflix wrapped up the last bit of Marvel cancellation by saying:

“We are grateful to Marvel for five years of our fruitful partnership and thank the passionate fans who have followed these series from the beginning.”

Of course, there has been rampant speculation as to whether Marvel or Netflix is to blame in this scenario. After all, the Disney+ streaming service is coming later this year, and surely the studio wants the freedom to play with their own toys without lining Netflix’s pockets at the same time. But on the other side of the equation, Netflix may have been bitter about the launch of Disney+ dashing any hopes of a new streaming deal with the House of Mouse, and they may have wanted to cut ties altogether.

Marvel Netflix Shows

Jeph Loeb Teases the Future of Marvel’s Netflix Shows

The big question is what the future of these shows will be, and Marvel’s Head of Television has the answer. Sort of. Here’s a letter posted to Marvel.com by Jeph Loeb, the producer behind each and every Marvel series on Netflix (and everywhere else, really), where he teases that Marvel isn’t done with these characters:

***

It had never been done before.

Four separate television series, each with different super-talented showrunners, writers, directors,cast and crew, coming out months apart and then…

…they would meet in a single event series all set in the heart of New York City.

We called them The Defenders.

And together we were thrilled by stories of Daredevil, Jessica Jones, Luke Cage, Iron Fist and even the Punisher joined in!

They said it couldn’t be done.

But Marvel assembled amazing teams to write, produce, direct, edit, and score 13 seasons and 161 one-hour episodes.

Take a moment and go online and look at the dazzling list of actors, writers, directors, and musicians who graced us with the very best of their craft.

We loved each and every minute of it.

And we did it all for you — the fans — who cheered for us around the world and made all the hard work worth it.

So, Thank You!

On behalf of everyone at Marvel Television, we couldn’t be more proud or more grateful to our audience.

Our Network partner may have decided they no longer want to continue telling the tales of these great characters… but you know Marvel better than that.

As Matthew Murdock’s Dad once said, “The measure of a man is not how he gets knocked to the mat, it’s how he gets back up.”

To be continued…!

– Jeph Loeb and all of us at Marvel Television”

***

So Marvel clearly has plans Daredevil, Jessica Jones, Luke Cage, Iron Fist and The Punisher, but we’ll have to wait patiently to see exactly what that means.

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