Some of the world’s most badass superwomen spring to life from the pages of Marvel's comics. The House of Ideas is resplendent these days with femme fatales like Black Widow, Captain Marvel, Laura Kinney, Squirrel Girl (no, really), and Jessica Jones. Speaking of Ms. Jones, she recently leapt from the comic book world to the small screen, becoming the second of Netflix’s popular Defenders series. Marvel’s streaming heroes have not only eked out a niche for themselves in the MCU, but have also been able to introduce other killer characters including The Punisher and Daredevil’s old flame, Elektra Natchios.
With a recurring (kind of) role in Daredevil, stock in the ninja warrior is on the rise. Not long ago, Netflix revealed that the anti-hero would return for the Defenders team-up, and now, it appears Elektra will also receive a brand new ongoing comic series.
The comic publisher recently announced Elektra’s first solo run in since 2015 (via Newsarama). Apparently, her new book will share some writing credentials with Netflix's storytellers, as Luke Cage scripter Matt Owens (Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.) will also pen the ongoing Elektra saga, with Alec Morgan (All-New Captain America) providing artwork. Kicking off next February, the ninja assassin will find herself in Las Vegas, skirting the boundaries between light and darkness as per usual. Owens spoke with Marvel about the character and her time in Sin City, saying:
"When we find Elektra in this story she is trying to hide in plain sight. She’s running. From everything. Vegas is a place that is extremely unfamiliar to her so that makes it perfect for her to hide out. But much like New York, Vegas has a dark side. And Elektra may not be able to stay out of trouble for long."
It sounds like Elektra is trying to keep a low profile, but she’ll have a little undesired attention, making it increasingly difficult to stay out of sight. Avengers Arena adversary Arcade (phew, that’s a lot of A’s) will make his return as well, setting his twisted sights on Ms. Natchios. The Luke Cage scribe discussed writing one of Marvel's more unusual villains, as well as the sadistic genius’ interest in Ms. Natchios:
"I love Arcade! He is so kooky. But at the same time he is not someone to be underestimated. He’s a brilliant inventor and a sadistic killer. He’s incredibly dangerous. It’s a different kind of threat for Elektra. As far as his interest in Elektra, she is one of the most formidable killers in the Marvel Universe. She fits perfectly into the new game he has constructed. So when she comes on his radar he simply can’t resist!"
With the character back on the pop culture map in a big way, Owens noted that he was curious about her darker past but more interested in where she’s headed. He said:
"Elektra has a very deep and complicated past. It’s a challenging balance to honor that while also trying to move a character forward. No matter where we find her we know one thing to be true about her above all else: she’s a badass. That part will never change. Putting her in unfamiliar places and matching her against unfamiliar foes is what will bring out sides to her she has not explored or is trying to run from. She’s Yojimbo, wandering from nothing and toward nothing. But the call of a hero is hard to ignore."
Created by Frank Miller in Daredevil #168, Elektra rapidly became a fan favorite and wound up in and out of the Marvel Universe – even landing a poorly-received solo flick starring Jennifer Garner in 2002. For Owens, the character will be his first time writing for comics, although he did intern with defunct creator-owned house Gaijin Studios (under Cully Hamner (Blue Beetle) and Brian Stelfreeze (Matador)). His first run through the four-color gauntlet will give him the opportunity to tackle one of Marvel’s wickedest mercenaries and will also tie Elektra into Marvel's "Running with the Devil" event. The Daredevil-based microcosm will include a new ongoing book for Kingpin, sidekick Bullseye, and of course a crossover into the Man Without Fear's own popular series.
Even though her Netflix outing was met with overall positive reviews, not everyone felt the gritty series did Elektra justice. Her latest comic, though, appears to have little in common with her Defenders story line, save for her physical appearance and costume (unsurprisingly). Bringing back Arcade, who’s intentionally corny persona coupled with his murderous intent and technological wizardry, should be a curious counterpoint to Elektra’s intensity. It will be interesting to find out what Marvel has in store for the Hand’s chosen warrior come next year, as well as how she interacts with the overall Daredevil micro-verse.
Hopefully, her latest comic saga will encourage Netflix to give her a solo streaming series of her own. No matter what happens, we’ll keep you posted on any new Elektra developments, whether on the page or on-screen.
Elektra #1 arrives online and in print in February of 2017.