After 30 years since the end of "The Incredible Hulk," Marvel's superheroes may finally return to primetime television.
Deadline is reporting that Marvel TV and ABC are in preliminary discussions about a new drama series set in the same world as The Avengers feature film. True fans of the movies know it as the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
Apparently, the new project is so early in its lifespan that it is simply “a kernel of an idea,” rather than a full fledged concept. The story states that the potential project would maintain some of the "themes and feel" of Joss Whedon's Avengers movie, but it will probably not feature any of the characters from that film. Some of the early ideas mentioned include a "high concept cop show" set in that world, which suggests that Marvel and ABC may be more interested in developing something directly for TV rather than using an original concept from the Marvel Universe comic books.
The long-in-development "AKA Jessica Jones" (based upon the "Alias" comic book series that was unrelated to the J.J. Abrams spy show) could have potentially served as a bridge between the Marvel properties on film and TV had it gone forward at ABC. Back in 2010, ABC and Marvel also announced a new "Hulk" TV series from Guillermo Del Toro and David Eick; which has also failed to materialize on the network. However, the current Deadline report states that a new writer for "Hulk" is currently being sought.
There are many lesser known Marvel heroes like Moon Knight, The Runaways, Heroes of For Hire, Cloak & Dagger, etc… who could potentially hold their own TV series and lead into the next round of movies from Marvel Studios. There was even a comic book called "Damage Control" years ago by the late Dwayne McDuffie that simply followed the men and women who clean up and rebuild New York City after massive superhero battles or disasters.
One of the reasons that Disney bought Marvel was to capitalize on its properties and push them through as many different forms of media as possible. Therefore, it's astonishing that Disney owned ABC and Marvel weren't able to bring out either "AKA Jessica Jones" or "Hulk" in time to take advantage of The Avengers newfound popularity, even with a headstart of at least two years. This new "Avengers" related TV project may be a face-saving measure as Disney scrambles to rectify its mistake.
But it remains to be seen if this potential new Marvel television series will fare any better at escaping from development hell than the other would-be TV superheroes.