Jessica Jones takes a break from the grittier parts of New York City and moves out to the suburbs where Jessica and Kilgrave are living the most f***ed up parts in Beauty and the Beast. Jessica plays the role of the strong-willed Beauty. Kilgrave plays the privileged, self-centered prick who was turned into a sociopathic control freak because he never learned the meaning of love (familial or otherwise), aka The Beast. Just like in Beauty and the Beast, Jessica gains some understanding about Kilgrave — Reva’s flash drive contained footage of a young Kilgrave being used as a lab rat by his own parents. Damn it. I’m suddenly feeling sympathetic towards the guy. How did this happen?!
Knowing what she knows now about her captor, Jessica decides to run a little experiment of her own. The hypothesis: Can she turn Kilgrave into a hero?
She conducts her own test by taking Kilgrave to a hostage situation currently in place. Kilgrave goes all Obi-Wan Kenobi (“but cooler”) on some police officers, and they sneak inside the house through the back. Kilgrave almost makes the gunman blow his brains out with his own shotgun, but Jessica talks Kilgrave into making the perp turn himself in to the cops instead. The mother of the hostage family gives Kilgrave a tearful “Thank you,” but Kilgrave himself is unmoved by her genuine gratitude.
Now here comes the problem in Jessica’s experiment: Back home, Kilgrave enthusiastically confesses that had Jessica not been there with him, he most assuredly would have made the gunman blow his brains out.
The terrifying realization/result: Jessica would have to be with Kilgrave constantly as his own Jiminy Cricket. Hey, I made another Disney reference!
“AKA WWJD?” boils down to one moral dilemma. Should Jessica stay with Kilgrave and use his powers for good? Jessica would finally become the hero, Kilgrave would no longer feel the need to victimize any more women (as far as she knows). But then…Kilgrave the tormentor would be getting want he wants as usual. I can’t help but feel that these are the thoughts some people have to contend with when it concerns their abusive partner. Should they go back? What happens if they don’t? Is there another way?
For Jessica, there is another way. She instead opts to lower Kilgrave’s guard and ambush him with her own trap. She drugs the cook’s and nanny’s food and injects the confused Kilgrave with Sufentanil. This is her chance to take him to the sound-proof chamber Simpson set up in a previous episode!
- “AKA WWJD?” injects some dark comedy to break up the overall f**ked up-ness that is this episode:
Kilgrave: “I’m waiting to see which Jessica I’m going to get.”
Jessica: “When I was a kid we used to eat breakfast out here.
Kilgrave: “Okay. ‘Trying to make an effort Jessica.’ ”
Jessica: “More like trying to make a shit situation tolerable.”
Kilgrave: “I’ll take that.”
- On top of blaming herself for Reva’s, Ruben’s, and the Schlottses’ murders, Jessica also thinks she caused the car accident that killed her family.
- I admit that it was a little satisfying watching Kilgrave make Jessica’s nosy neighbor call herself out on her own sh*t. But later, the dynamic goes right back to disturbing when we find out that Kilgrave set her up to deliver herself as a suicide bomber in case something happened to him…like getting kidnapped. I’m not sure the specifics were, but it was probably to punish his bodyguards should they fail to protect him.
- Simpson was among the bodyguards to get blown up. Yeah…it doesn’t look like he’s coming back.
- Kilgrave is still likes to torture other people, namely the poor cook and the nanny, even if it’s just to ease his impatience while waiting for Jessica to return from her long walk. Even if Jessica did turn him into a hero, the psychopathic cat will play while she’s away.
- Kilgrave is definitely a lost cause. He’ll never be good no matter how hard Jessica would have tried. His world-view is all about getting what he wants. While Jessica sees his taking control of her as rape, Kilgrave only sees it as a result of his own ignorance. He spent money, gave her pretty things. In his mind, he deserved her body. How is he supposed to know when it’s rape? Wow. Could this be anymore of a reflection of real-life excuses abusers use?