Why Jessica Jones Brought Back Kilgrave For Season 2, According To The Showrunner

Kilgrave behind Jessica in Season 2

Spoilers ahead for Season 1 of Marvel's Jessica Jones.

It's an exciting time for fans of the Marvel Cinematic Universe. While moviegoers are still reeling from Ryan Coogler's record breaking Black Panther, there is also new content coming to the small screen. Season 2 of Jessica Jones has finally arrived after nearly two years, bringing everyone's favorite alcoholic private investigator back for a sophomore adventure in Marvel's New York City. Fans have been eager to return to the noir-inspired world of the series, and anticipation reached a fever pitch when the first trailer revealed the return of David Tennant's villainous Kilgrave. I recently had the chance to speak with showrunner Melissa Rosenberg, and she told me exactly why Kilgrave was brought back into the show's narrative:

He's part of Jessica's experience in the world. Season 1 revealed that. And because you come to terms with it, and in her case kill the guy, doesn't mean that it no longer exists in your psyche. It's an experience she carries with her, and forms a lot of her actions and feelings. He's kind of there in so many ways throughout, and the storytelling very organically calls for him to come back.

Melissa Rosenberg makes an excellent point, and proves why Jessica Jones is such a standout in Marvel's small screen catalogue. The series doesn't pander to fan theories or expectations, instead focusing on an emotionally driven plot. Kilgrave returns in Season 2 because, in many ways, he never really left.

Season 1 of Jessica Jones was very much focused on the character's psyche, and the trauma she suffered at the hands of David Tennant's Kilgrave. Jessica had pretty severe PTSD from her time being mind controlled and sexually assaulted by the villain. Kilgrave was the enemy of Season 1, and we saw as Jessica slowly broke herself free from his influence, and finally ended the conflict by snapping his neck in their final battle.

But just because Jessica was able to free the world of Kilgrave's physical presence, he still has the ability to cause anguish with Jessica and the countless others that he influenced with his abilities. There was even a Kilgrave support group in the show's first season, so it stands to reason that Jessica would be scarred from her experience. After all, she suffered a great deal.

In our conversation, Melissa Rosenberg also expressed her eagerness to work with David Tennant again, and how she looked out for organic and logical reasons why he might pop back up.

That and also I frickin' love David Tennant. If the story starts leaning in a direction where you go 'Oh, maybe we could bring David back'. You go that direction, you know? But it has to feel true to the character, it can't feel like it's there because I love David Tennant. It has to be true for Jessica's story.

This is yet another reason why fans should be eager to binge watch the second season of Jessica Jones. Plus, it explains why we haven't been promised any appearances by the other members of The Defenders. They'll only pop up if it actually makes sense for the narrative.

Jessica Jones is currently streaming both of its seasons on Netflix. In the meantime, check out our midseason premiere list to plan your next binge watch. Additionally, our Amazon premiere list and superhero premiere list to ensure you don't miss a single episode.

Corey Chichizola
Movies Editor

Corey was born and raised in New Jersey. Graduated with degrees theater and literature from Ramapo College of New Jersey. After working in administrative theater for a year in New York, he started as the Weekend Editor at CinemaBlend. He's since been able to work himself up to reviews, phoners, and press junkets-- and is now able to appear on camera with some of his favorite actors... just not as he would have predicted as a kid. He's particularly proud of covering horror franchises like Scream and Halloween, as well as movie musicals like West Side Story. Favorite interviews include Steven Spielberg, Spike Lee, Jamie Lee Curtis, and more.