Disney+ is getting the entire Netflix Marvelverse slate – Daredevil, Jessica Jones, Luke Cage, Iron Fist, The Defenders and Punisher – it was announced this morning. Agents of Shield, which originally debuted on ABC, is also joining Disney+. (Cult favorite Agent Carter was already available on the service.)
The shows will be available on Disney+ starting on March 16th.
But if you have ever watched any of these shows, you may recall that they include lots of onscreen sex, swearing and bloody violence…things that are not usually seen on Disney+. Daredevil and Punisher were originally rated TV-M, the equivalent of an R rating.
To that end, Disney is also updating and strengthening its parental controls for what is considered a “TV-14 environment”. Starting on March 16th, subscribers will be prompted to update their Parental Controls, and can select their own content rating restrictions – and lock them up with a PIN.
“Disney+ has served as the home for some of the most beloved brands in the industry, and the addition of these live-action shows brings more from the Marvel brand together, all in one place,” said Michael Paull, President of Disney Streaming in a statement acknowledging that the fledglings had come home.. “We have experienced great success with an expanded content offering on Disney+ across our global markets and are excited to continue that here in the U.S. as well by offering our consumers not only great content with the new Marvel additions, but also a set of features that help ensure a viewing experience most suitable for them and their family.”
The journey of the Marvel’s Netflix series is a long and groundbreaking one. Announced in 2013 (when the MCU was popular but not the global behemoth it is now) and debuting in 2015, the original slate of five series was not only a big move for Marvel, but among Netflix’s most prominent early moves into original content – something that is now the baseline of the entertainment industry. While not every show was a success (cough Iron Fist cough), and plagued by some pacing problems – no one had figured out that 13 episodes was way too much for a streaming series – many of them found a solid fan following, with Charlie Cox’s Daredevil a particular fan favorite.
The shows were also under the control of Marvel Television, the division run by Jeph Loeb (with heavy meddling from Ike Perlmutter) until it was disbanded back in 2019, and the properties put under the control of MCU mastermind Kevin Feige.
With Cox’s cameo appearance in SpiderMan No Way Home, and Vincent D’Onofrio’s epic Kingpin appearing in Hawkeye, the Earth Netflix-verse has been gradually making its way into the MCU “proper.”
But the move wasn’t entirely a no brainer for Disney, Deadline reports, at least from a money standpoint.
The shows left Netflix Tuesday after Disney opted to forgo a hefty licensing fee from Netflix in order to regain the rights. Disney CFO Christine McCarthy said in an earnings call in early February that the company expects to lose out on $200 million in licensing income as it regains the rights to various series.
Daredevil in particular has experienced a resurgence in interest, following star Cox’s cameo appearance in Spider-Man: No Way Home and Vincent D’ONofrio, who played the villain Wilson Fisk, appearing on the Disney+ series Hawkeye.
The move also suggest that the upcoming Oscar Isaac-led Moon Knight series will indeed live up predictions that it will be a violent affair. Folks were skeptical when Feige promised it would push the boundaries, in an interview with Empire. “It’s been fun to work with Disney+ and see the boundaries shifting on what we’re able to do,” he said. “There are moments when Moon Knight is wailing on another character, and it is loud and brutal, and the knee-jerk reaction is, ‘We’re gonna pull back on this, right?’ No. We’re not pulling back. There’s a tonal shift. This is a different thing. This is ‘Moon Knight.’”
While this kind of violence was not available on Disney+ before, but with the new parental controls, a whole new world of mayhem has opened up for viewers.