Marvel Studios is about to make their biggest splash into the entertainment industry since the end of the Infinity Saga, starting off with Disney+'s WandaVision at the end of the week. This will begin a year in which nearly every single week will come with new MCU content between the movies and Disney+ shows, and this trend will likely continue in 2022 and beyond.
Now that Phase 4 is about to bring dozens of new characters into play for the MCU, including the teams acquired in the Fox/Disney merger from 2019, the on-screen saga is set to expand into a true representation of the comic books with interactions and action never imagined before. Currently, however, this doesn't include the characters from Marvel's Netflix series like Daredevil, Iron Fist, and The Defenders ensemble show, which have mostly been seen as a "black sheep" of sorts within the franchise.
However, all hope may not be lost for the Defenders team, according to recent quotes from Marvel's head man.
In a recent interview with The Hollywood Reporter, Marvel CCO Kevin Feige took some time during the WandaVision press junket to address the future of the characters from Marvel TV's Netflix series. Feige's quotes indicate that characters like Daredevil and Jessica Jones may still have a future within the larger MCU.
When asked if such Netflix characters are still in play, Feige stated:
"Everything is on the board. That's one of the fun things about the comics is that characters would appear and disappear and come and go. All of it is inspiration for the future. There are some great characters and actors from those shows."
WHAT THIS MEANS
The Marvel Netflix shows have always had a strange relationship with the larger MCU, with plot points that both connect them and separate them from what happens in the movies. However, it should be an encouraging sign that Feige isn't putting them on the shelves to gather dust after their run on Netflix ended.
With 161 episodes centered around Daredevil, Jessica Jones, Luke Cake, Iron Fist and the Punisher, it seems like it would be a huge mistake to move on from their stories within the MCU after so much build-up. The main question to ponder, should such characters see their arcs continue, is if they will move directly from the Netflix shows into the movies or if they will be reintroduced as new versions of the heroes from the comics. Whenever this resolves itself, the biggest hope is that Marvel keeps this way of thinking and brings the Defenders into the fray in a meaningful fashion.
Currently, the closest indicator of their return is the rumor that Charlie Cox will reprise his role as Daredevil in the upcoming Spider-Man 3.