Who Is The Purple Man: David Tennant Cast As Kilgrave In ‘AKA Jessica Jones’
Netflix's Marvel TV show AKA Jessica Jones may have found its lead villain in former Doctor Who actor David Tennant. Marvel has announced that Tennant will play Kilgrave, "an enigmatic figure from Jessica's past", and fans familiar with the show's inspiration, the Brian Michael Bendis/Michael Gaydos comic Alias, will know that Zebediah Killgrave is the name of Jessica's most dangerous nemesis, The Purple Man.
Created by Stan Lee and Joe Orlando as a Daredevil villain in Daredevil #4 in 1964, The Purple Man is a former spy who gained mind control powers following a mad science accident that also turned his skin and hair purple. A minor but notably sinister villain, he appears in Alias as the cause of the trauma that led Jessica Jones to quit her superhero career, and will likely serve as the lead antagonist in AKA Jessica Jones. Based on the evidence of Marvel's announcement, the TV version does not go by the name The Purple Man, nor even Killgrave, but the more prosaic 'Kilgrave', with one L. He may not even be called Zebediah, which would be a terrible shame. Come to think of it, he may not even be purple.
David Tennant feels like smart casting for the role. As the Tenth Doctor on long-running BBC sci-fi show Doctor Who he picked up a major fan following. He now stars in the British crime series Broadchurch, and tried to reprise that role for the failed US remake Gracepoint. Casting him as Kilgrave may help build his name with US audiences while also drawing in his broad sci-fi fanbase.
Showrunner Melissa Rosenberg said of Tennant; "I'm so honored and excited by the prospect of David inhabiting this multifaceted character. He can deliver the most heart-wrenching moment to the driest of lines, and all points in between. He'll make Kilgrave a truly original villain."
AKA Jessica Jones stars Krysten Ritter as Jessica Jones and Mike Colter as Luke Cage. The series is expected to premiere in late 2015, but no official date has been announced.