You might forgive the fine folks over at Marvel Television Studios for thinking that they can do no wrong! Over the last several years they went from zero to 14 total series on Netflix, ABC, Fox, FX, Hulu and Freeform (whatever the hell that is) — with several more in the pipeline. With all these shows it’s hard to imagine that there’s a demographic they haven’t dominated yet… and you’d be wrong, apparently.
Speaking at the Edinburg TV Festival this week Marvel TV’s senior VP of original programming, Karim Zreik, shared a few details of a new project they’ve developing with ABC:
“Comedy is something we really want to go into. It took us time to dip our foot in the comedy pool [with Guardians of the Galaxy], but we’d never do an office comedy.”
Comedy and superheroes are a tenuous combination, as NBC recently learned with their failed Powerless show, which was based in the DC universe. That said, Marvel is no slouch when it comes to infusing their properties with humor, and you could argue that Guardians is more comedy than superhero.
However, the prospect of a focused comedy set in the MCU… well, that’s a healthy risk even for Marvel, who’s closest brush with failure thus far was the poorly-reviewed Iron Fist — the most-binged show on Netflix according to Variety; so much for failure.
So, aside from “why not, we’re Marvel,” what’s the motivation to jump into a network comedy series? THR spoke with Zreik in Edinburgh — over a wee few pints, I’m guessing — to pry forth some details and perhaps a rationale too. Zreik explained that Daredevil‘s audience is predominately male, Jessica Jones has strong pull with females, Luke Cage captures both audiences, Iron Fist slants younger demographics, and The Inhumans is Marvel’s “first family show.” He had me right up until the end; maybe we’re all just wrong about The Inhumans?
Zreik describes this new ABC comedy series Zreik as “female-focused” and “it’s Jessica Jones-esque.” Implying that (I think) there’s plenty more gold to be mined appealing to a female demographic, as Marvel has the male demo pretty-well sewn-up. I hope you’ll forgive our speculation, as Marvel has mastered the art of generating a lot of buzz with the fewest possible words.
It’s an intriguing concept, a non-workplace comedy set in the Marvel universe. Given that most (if not all) of Marvel’s A and B-list heroes are already spoken for, I suspect we’ll be dipping into the more obscure parts of the canon. But, given the success of everything else Marvel has done on TV, wouldn’t you be interested in “Cheers” with supervillains? Or how about “Scrubs” starring the Night Nurse? Why not, right? It’s Marvel!
Would you tune into a weekly Marvel comedy series on ABC? Let us know in the comments down below!
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