Hero Hype: A List of Superlatives for 2017-2018’s Hottest Shows

Marvel and DC movies are great, but they only come out a few times a year. Need something else to whet your appetite?  Here’s 151MM’s list of the latest superhero TV shows to help you get your quick fix.

The Defenders

Season one release date: 8.18.17

The collaboration between Netflix and Marvel, responsible for hits like Jessica Jones and Daredevil, has come up with what is the The Avengers (2014) of television: a show featuring heroes from their past releases—Jessica Jones, Matt Murdock, Luke Cage, and Danny Rand—teaming up to combat an organization known as the Hand that is threatening New York. Combining the main characters from three stellar action series and Iron Fist (Admit it Marvel, Iron Fist was just horrendous) is a recipe for one of the most riveting shows on Netflix, as heroes with vastly different ideals and opinions on what it means to be a hero punch and kick their way to victory. Fight sequences in the show are top-notch and exhilarating to watch, and since all four heroes specialize in hand-to-hand combat, strap yourself in for an extravaganza of  backflips, high kicks, and uppercuts as the heroes fight to defend New York…again.

 

Inhumans

season one release date: 9.29.17

With a two-year wait until the next season of Game of Thrones comes out, Thronies might just have to look elsewhere to kill time—might we suggest Inhumans? Who doesn’t enjoy an old fashioned tale of familial disputes and dynastic struggle? The show’s writers have made clear their intent to emphasize the power of kin, which holds the Inhuman royal family together as they live in exile after being ousted by the king’s brother Maximus. Inhumans checks all the boxes that Game of Thrones did: political power struggle? You bet. Family angst? Worry not. Menacing threat that could destroy everything? Yup. Weird incest? Low-key yes. Dragons? Well.. you have super powered not-quite-humans who can level cities by themselves in an all out brawl, so… good enough.

 

 

Supergirl

season three release date: 10.9.17

By Season 3, Supergirl writers have laid the foundation of Kara Danvers’ alter ego: they have built up Supergirl’s backstory and established a balance between her crime-fighting and daily life. But one thing they haven’t explored yet is Kara’s identity beyond Supergirl. As such, it makes sense that Season 3 will take a look at Supergirl characters’ struggles with their own personal identities. Fans will get a glimpse at Kara’s inner conflict about being both an alien and a human as well as her willingness to sacrifice her public career at Catco for the greater good. We’ll also get a look at the development of Alex and Maggie’s love affair and James Olsen’s vigilante ways. As a whole, the violence and crime-fighting ways of Supergirl will be kept to a minimum this season, instead focusing on the intricacies of daily life, a deviation from the standard superhero show grounded in incessant action. Season 3 will explore a slice in the lives of our beloved characters, thus taking on a slightly more serious edge than the first 2 seasons, while hopefully retaining the humorous and lighthearted elements that Supergirl has become so widely loved for.

 

The Flash

season four release date: 10.10.17

Traditionally, superhero movies and shows center around one character: the superpowered or talented protagonist. But in Season 4, The Flash is prepared to do something unprecedented—remove the protagonist from the picture entirely. With the show’s titular character, Barry Allen himself, having vanished into the Speed Force in the Season 3 finale, his fiance and longtime love, Iris West, will step into the role of the leader of Team Flash, allowing audiences to see the developing female dynamic of the show. Specifically, we’ll see a developing friendship between Caitlin and Iris, as Caitlin gives Iris advice on how to proceed with her relationship with Barry. Loose ends from Season 3 will be tied up, with many new ones made to replace them—new villains such as DeVoe and The Mechanic and the dynamics of a Team Flash learning to adapt without its beloved leader.

 

Legends of Tomorrow

season three release date: 10.10.17

Having defeated Eobard Thawne and the equally nefarious Legion of Doom at the end of Season 2, the Legends team runs into another problem in the third season—cleaning up the mess they left behind. Having revisited a moment they played a part in creating to resolve the conflict in Season 2, the Legends severely fractured the timeline, creating multiple anachronisms that they must now resolve. The previous two seasons alone were baffling enough, dealing with the mechanics of time-travel, but focusing on the repercussions of time travel gone wrong is sure to make the show even more confounding than before. Although Season 2 of the Legends was a significant improvement from Season 1, it sounds like Legends will only gets better from here.

 

Arrow

season six release date: 10.12.17

Season 6 of Arrow, one of CW’s most seasoned shows, begins by dealing with the repercussions of the (literally) explosive finale of Season 5. The question is which, if any, members of the Arrow team have made it out alive, especially considering the writers’ teasing remarks regarding the possibility of the Arrow team not making it out whole. Furthermore, according to Stephen Amell (Oliver Queen in Arrow), Oliver will have to figure out which of his closest friends and family members he can truly trust and rely on. Amidst all of this, we’ll get a glimpse of what is going on in Earth 2, as introduced in Season 5, especially with Laurel Lance’s evil alter ego, Black Siren, who up till now has been a character who we know little about.The season helps to build up Black Siren’s backstory, providing an interesting perspective on her motives and character. We’ll also see the return of Dinah Drake and Rene Ramirez as season regulars and the development of their characters from where Season 5 left off. Despite the show’s already loaded cast, Star City will be seeing many new faces in the next season; for now, one can only wonder if any of the new additions will be replacing anyone who didn’t make it off the island of Lian Yu alive.

 

The Punisher

season one release date: 11.17.17

These days it seems like New York is just crawling with crime fighting vigilantes! The newest addition? Frank Castle. He comes with the obligatory tragic backstory—when a cold-blooded crime boss signs the death warrant of his family, he alone manages to survive, and lo-and-behold, the Punisher is born. Unlike other heroes with similar backstories that have grown roots in the cinematic canon, the Punisher doesn’t fight out of an urge to uphold justice or to protect his city—only to seek revenge on those who took away everything he had. Unlike the Dark Knight, who follows a personal code, Frank Castle is someone who’s willing to do whatever it takes. Can someone without a moral compass still be a hero?

 

 

 

 

Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.

season five release date: 12.1.17

Some think the superhero genre is mostly about overpowered individuals punching and kicking their way to victory, while powerless mortals hide cowering behind them; Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. inverts this stereotype, and instead has ordinary humans saving the day and cleaning up after the messes that superhumans leave behind. The new season will see S.H.I.E.L.D. struggle with the aftermath of one such mess—Coulson’s pact with the Ghostrider that allowed him to temporarily gain his power and suppress an AI uprising in Season 4. With their reputation in tatters and their leader grappling with personal business, the fate of S.H.I.E.L.D. is now in their own hands.