Daredevil. Jessica Jones. Luke Cage. Iron Fist. These four superheroes finally teamed up in Marvel’s The Defenders on Netflix, and — you guessed it — combined their unique powers to protect New York City from a catastrophic threat. At only eight episodes, you could easily consume The Defenders in a week, or a particularly pizza-heavy weekend.
If you’ve already blown through the adventures of Marvel’s newest team, here are a few shows to keep you busy until Jessica Jones Season 2 comes out. Check out JustWatch for availability information.
Legion is probably the best superhero show ever made; it’s also the least traditional. In this X-Men spinoff, David Haller (Dan Stevens) is a powerful mutant with a variety of telepathic powers. Unfortunately, those powers have driven him to the brink of insanity. Together with a ragtag team of insurgents, Haller must stand against both an oppressive government agency and a mystical adversary who threatened his father. Come for the unpredictable story and witty dialogue; stay for the insanely attractive color palette, distinctive visuals and unconventional directorial style.
Credit: Michelle Faye/FX
The Tick first appeared in a series of independent comic books in the late '80s as a parody of comic book superheroes and the self-serious culture that had surrounded them. After a moderately successful animated series in the '90s and a not-very-successful live-action series in the early 2000s, the Tick has returned to small screens everywhere. Peter Serafinowicz plays the titular blue superhero, who deals with sidekicks, supervillains, secret identities and other caped crimefighter tropes — but he does it with his tongue firmly planted in his cheek.
Credit: Jessica Miglio/Amazon Studios
If you crave another show with a core group of friends who are sometimes at each other’s throats, Stranger Things is your next stop. Although Stranger Things is more of an homage to Stephen King and Dungeons & Dragons than superhero nostalgia, there’s still plenty here for fans craving action-packed group drama. Mike (Finn Wolfhard) is a middle-schooler searching for a lost friend. Instead, he comes across Eleven (Millie Bobby Brown): a girl with mysterious powers and a connection to a dangerous parallel dimension.
While Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. isn’t as good as the Marvel shows on Netflix, it does at least fit into the same continuity. Phil Coulson (Clark Gregg) leads a team of special operatives who deal with superpowered threats in the Marvel Universe — or at least the ones that don’t require calling in The Avengers. While it’s more of a spy procedural than a superhero show, Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. gives viewers another look at what Marvel’s world looks like for the average Joe or Jane.
Credit: Jennifer Clasen/ABC
If you’ve already exhausted every Marvel show on the air, why not give DC a spin? Arrow is a modern-day retelling of Green Arrow’s origin story, starring fan favorite Stephen Amell as the main character. Like Danny Rand in Iron Fist, Oliver Queen is a child of privilege who winds up fighting for his life in the remote corners of the world. When he returns to Star City, he uses his incredible archery skills to fight crime. If you like crossovers, Arrow mixes with Supergirl, The Flash and Legends of Tomorrow.
Credit: Katie Yu/The CW
Even though Community never got its coveted “six seasons and a movie,” this quirky little show still managed to defy the odds longer than anyone (except its fans) thought possible. Jeff Winger (Joel McHale) becomes the ringleader for a study group of unconventional students at a substandard community college. Since the group skews to the nerdy side (even if they won’t admit it), there are plenty of superhero references, including (arguably) the best Batman monologue since The Dark Knight.
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I can see you rolling your eyes from here, but hear me out: How I Met Your Mother is absolutely a worthy follow-up Defenders binge. You want a group of quirky 30-somethings in New York City, banding together for a common goal, despite wildly different personalities? Here you go. Ted Mosby (Josh Radnor) wants to find true love in the big city, but between his difficult job, his crazy friends and his bizarre romantic interests, it's not as easy as it sounds. (Author’s Note: You could also watch Friends, if you absolutely must.)
Credit: Ron P. Jaffe/CBS