Jupiter’s Legacy. Volume One (Netflix.) Review.

The contemporary age of streaming is all about how many viable IP’s each service has. Pioneer Netflix has been left somewhat behind in this regard. A couple of their in-house originals could be considered valuable but they churn through content at such an alarming rate Certain shows are not given enough time to build into a franchise. To combat this the higher-ups have been on a spending spree in an attempt to acquire some proven franchises. One of those was the purchase of various Mark Miller properties with acquiring his company Millerworld. The first major attempt at utilising his work for their service comes with this adaptation of a multi-generational superhero comic. Is this a solid indicator that Millerworld was this solid purchase?
Unfortunately not. As a Netflix show, Jupiter’s Legacy is not the outright disaster it might have been. That said it screams of a creative team thinking they’re making something revolutionary when in fact the exact opposite is true. Miller initially hired Stephen S DeKight as showrunner (he directed the first two episodes)before departing production at the halfway mark. This seems like a solid choice on paper. DeKnights first season of Netflix’s Daredevil is one of the best superhero TV efforts in recent memory. The blend of grounded realism, R rated brutality and superhero action comes together superbly. Unfortunately, the material DeKnight has to work with here comes much closer to and an adult version of Power Rangers. Throw in a dash of invincible and a little bit of This Is Us. Playing out over two timelines with differing aspect ratios this whole season is filled with strange creative decisions. Why does the shifting aspect ratio have a faint whiff of Michael Bay level self-indulgence? What is with the insistence on the core adult cast playing the characters across both timelines? This result in some truly atrocious wardrobe choices with some of the least convincing wig work viewers will see on streaming. Why is this yet another instance of the entire season effectively acting as a prologue to the full story? With how variable Netflix are with the prospect of renewing things there’s no guarantee of a second season. All that said there are moments (especially in the 1930s timeline) whether the series does showcase some growth potential. These moments are few and far between. The 8 episodes are nothing more than a showcase for ideas and themes that have been explored before and better in other superhero media.
As a season and an introduction to Netflix Millerworld content, Jupiter’s legacy is impressively generic. Miller’s work has been wonderfully adapted by Matthew Vaughn in the past. After watching what production with more distinct Miller involvement looks like this critic is willing to bet that Vaughns presence curb’s some of Millers bad creative instincts. Even if some of the best creative minds for the job(as was the case with Steven S DeKnight )are employed in adapting material for another medium if the material is generically mediocre anyway there’s little they can do. This show does showcase the potential to improve. The question is whether viewers will give it the time to utilise this. Will they simply move on to the next hot property.
5/10

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