The decision last week by Netflix to cancel “Marvel’s Daredevil” surprised many of those actually involved in the show – not just the stars or writers, but even Marvel executives themselves.
Speaking with Gizmodo, series writer Tamara Becher-Wilkinson says: “If I was a betting woman, you know, my guess is that it’s the end of the Marvel universe on Netflix.” Becher-Wilkinson was working on the fourth season of the series with the storyline drafted and pitched to Netflix.
The writers were waiting for the seemingly inevitable news that they would get renewed, even with the recent cancellations of “Luke Cage” and “Iron Fist,” but it didn’t happen and the axing was a shock. Becher-Wilkinson, who was in the middle of creating a writing schedule for season four, says:
“[Showrunner Erik Oleson] got a call asking him to go down to see the Marvel executives, and I jokingly went ‘Ooooooooh,’ like a third grader does when someone gets called to a principal’s office. Then, he waited for everybody to gather back in the writers’ room and he said, ‘Netflix has decided not to move forward with season four.’ And that’s all I remember, you know. I kind of missed the details because I was, like, so surprised.”
Becher-Wilkinson adds she wasn’t surprised when “Iron Fist,” which she also worked on, got cancelled but said she was floored when “Daredevil” followed suit because of both the great critical and fan reception and its spot as a legacy series:
“The reviews were so overwhelmingly positive that I thought there was no way they would cancel it. I don’t know how well it does on Netflix or anything like that…[but] it was surprising to me they would cancel something that was so well received. I thought it was too big to fail.”
Netflix hasn’t given an official reason why it’s cancelled its three Marvel-Disney shows but with Disney’s streaming service Disney+ launching next year, it is being seen as the obvious reason. Disney owns the rights to the characters and so could reboot the shows on the service, but continuations of any of the Marvel-Netflix collaborations is looking more and more unlikely.