The Defenders Thinking of making a 'Defenders' Fan-Edit

Discussion in 'Past Marvel Series' started by henzINNIT, Jan 10, 2019.

  1. henzINNIT Registered

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    EDIT - FINISHED (unless errors are spotted). Finishing artwork. Coming soon!

    It's an idea only until the series sees home release, but I'm currently looking at ways to chop this show down to a 2 hour movie. It might be a tight squeeze, but I feel the show as-is has a remarkable amount of padding. I hope that cutting the fat will make the mash-up feel more exciting, as it should.

    I have a bunch of ideas already but I'm curious to hear as much feedback about the show as possible. As well as going through old threads, I thought it would be interesting to see what people liked and didn't, what needs to stay and what would need to go, in the context of a potential edit. So please, any thoughts appreciated, as specific or nebulous as you like.

    Titles ideas too! Can't think of anything right now.
     
    #1 henzINNIT, Jan 10, 2019
    Last edited: Feb 13, 2022
  2. Spider-Fan SHHFFL 2014/2019 Champion

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    I don't know if it can be squeezed down to 2 hours. But 2.5 hours might be doable. I think to make it work, you would almost need to make Elektra the main villain throughout the entire 2nd half of the film and cut Alexandra way down.

    This would be a fun exercise.
     
  3. henzINNIT Registered

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    Agreed on all counts. Done some (far too much) prep work and the current plan should land around 2.5. I wouldn't want it any longer.

    On Elektra, yeah that is the logical option. I'm thinking the film will open with Elektra's resurrection (as episode 3 did). I'm going to cut down and shuffle Alexandra's scenes a bit to establish her more as a threat. Her illness will be revealed to us as it is to Elektra for one, and I'll reduce the amount of in-fighting among the Hand leadership. I'm thinking of presenting Alexandra as softening to Elektra over time, something that ultimately costs her.
     
  4. MadVillainy C'mon Son

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    Yeah this sounds cool.
    I for sure think there was waaay too much padding, which is weird because it's the shortest of all the series.
    I think 2.5 could be good. You would have to cut a lot of Elektra stuff. A lot of the side characters.

    I don't think it will make Defenders great because obviously the performances, characters, etc. will be the same. But I for sure would be interested to see what you come up with if you finish it.

    I only watched the show once so I can't go into specifics on what should be cut.
     
  5. henzINNIT Registered

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    Here's a rough break-down of my planned changes:


    - New opening based on s1e3's opening: the resurrection and training of Elektra. The former will be the opening credit sequence, and the latter expanded beyond Elektra's training and into her various kills (culled from Danny subplot footage). The montage will essentially catch us up to present day, and there will be no other flashbacks.

    - First Act will be comprised of the first 3 episodes. The story starts proper with Luke being released from prison and meeting Foggy. The various subplots of Luke, Matt and particularly Jessica will be trimmed down. Danny will be cut entirely until Luke fights him. Danny and Luke's conversation in Colleen's dojo will be trimmed. Stick is cut until he appears in the restaurant in act 2. Alexandra's visit to the hospital cut, her illness will be revealed later so she can be seen as intimidating before she is vulnerable. The Run the Jewels music cue in the big Midland Circle fight always bothered me. I will try to "fix" it by either re-arranging things so it can play out longer, or by removing it altogether.

    - Second Act is best described as the life and death of Stick. His arrival brings important exposition and his death is a textbook "all is lost" moment. This will be made up of episodes 4,5 and 6, and a lot of down-time will be cut from the many hostage situations that take place. The restaurant sequence will be cut down, including removing Alexandra appearing there and Jessica leaving (along with all of her activities outside). Bakuto's first confrontation with Danny and Colleen will be cut, along with Murakami attacking Trish and several Hand meeting scenes. The Hand's motivations will be streamlined to just the substance (as the return to Kun-Lun is murky and goes nowhere). Elektra will straight-forwardly take over the Hand once she kills Alexandra.

    - Third Act will be episodes 7 and 8, and the most heavily changed of all. There will be dramatic cuts to the group's time in the police station, as well as all of the scenes of the Defenders heading to Midland Circle, the awful boss fight with the Hand in the parking lot, and the prolonged debate over whether to use the bombs. In my edit Matt, Jessica and Luke escape the station and we'll immediately pick up with them arriving to fight with Colleen and Claire upstairs planting bombs. The Wu Tang music cue in the cave fight will be changed in a similar vein to the RTJ one earlier. The ending scenes will be trimmed for pacing. Foggy with Luke (and Claire) will close to bookend the film. Matt with the nuns will be the final shot/stinger.

    -Post Credit: Defenders ride the train.
     
    #5 henzINNIT, Feb 18, 2019
    Last edited: Feb 18, 2019
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  6. Chip Chipperson the big guy

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    looking forward to it, champ
     
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  7. henzINNIT Registered

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    Digging this up in case anyone is interested. No physical release for the Defenders, but it was eventually sold digitally by Apple which means I had something to work with. And work I have. Over the past month or so I have put this thing together. It's complete as of writing but I have to render and make sure everything is seamless before I share it. Working on artwork too.

    Run-time is just shy of 3 hours. I need to compile a full list of edits, but as the series was well over 6 hours originally, the changes are extensive. I think I've kept the good stuff by and large, but dramatically increased the pace.

    I'm calling it 'Defenders: Cut to the Chaste' to distinguish it from the series, but within the work itself it is still just The Defenders. I've chucked the 6 minute opening in a google drive if anyone fancies a preview. Drop me a PM.
     
    #7 henzINNIT, Jan 27, 2022
    Last edited: Jan 27, 2022
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  8. DarkKnight88 Registered

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    As someone who thinks most shows could use a lot of fat cutting, I think this is a great idea!
     
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  9. TheVileOne Registered

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    I'm just not sure how a fan edit fixes the show, or how bad the Hand/K'un L'un plot turned out to be.
     
  10. KRYPTON INC. Incorporated Kryptonian

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    Kudos...

    But the issues that needed tackling before bloat was plot, writing and charaterization. Book Of Boba Fett has pacing problems.

    Defenders simply was completely inert and had inherent problems being invested in the Hand which... Actually weren't bad villains in DD at the start, but they were simply opaque AF in Defenders and IF. And IF is the other series whose existence drags this all down by a lot of notches.

    The editing that needed to happen was way back when this was being written and conceived.
     
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  11. henzINNIT Registered

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    I guess it's up to each of us individually how salvagable this is. It seemed like an ideal edit candidate to me for a few reasons. For one, it's a necessary piece of the larger Daredevil story.

    It's a pretty decent show to me too. The characters that worked still work, and there's fun to be had in bringing them together. The villains aren't great but they don't have to be for the story to function. They work well enough, better for cutting a lot of standing around talking.
     
  12. metaphysician Not a Side-Kick

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    I agree that an edit can't actually fix the serious issues with Defenders, but OTOH, at the very least an edit could make those issues *less* of an issue, by presenting less of them.
     
  13. henzINNIT Registered

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    Just when I think the tweaking is done, Disney whip out their wallets and try to get me to add new logos to this :p

    I'm about 99% sure this is complete. 3hr2m with credits and a mid-credit sequence. Will have to give it one last beginning to end scan for issues but to my knowledge there's nothing left to do but finishing the cover art. Looking into the best way to host it, there's limits to what you can do for free and it'll be a hefty file.

    The Hand are undoubtably the weakest aspect of the show, and while I agree that you'd need more than an edit to make them great, I do think careful scene selection will help significantly. There is far, far less of them being vague, in-fighting, and generally failing at their goals. Alexandra for instance has almost all of her screen time dedicated to showing her vulnerabilities (terminal illness, threats from other leaders, a doting motherly relationship with Elektra). All of this is stripped back. No standing around and talking endlessly, we check in with them a lot less and when we see them, they're doing something.
     
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  14. Batgirl0202 Registered

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    Can't wait to watch this :yay:
     
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  15. henzINNIT Registered

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    Hey all. I have a google drive folder containing an MP4, cover art and an exhaustive word doc listing all changes that I can share in PM's for anyone who's interested.

    [​IMG]
     
    #15 henzINNIT, Apr 11, 2022
    Last edited: Apr 11, 2022
  16. metaphysician Not a Side-Kick

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    Huh. I hadn't really thought about it before, but. . . I think I agree. If you can't make the Hand detailed and compelling, it would have been much better to *keep* them vague and unexplained. Only show what the heroes see. The Hand are ominous, unknowable, and in-your-face. A hero is going about their business, then Suddenly Ninjas!
     
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  17. henzINNIT Registered

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    Yup, that was pretty much my approach. The scene where Alexandra recruits Murakami is a rare one I kept. That had more atmosphere and menace than the others. But generally I found 'less is more' worked for these guys ha.

    Speaking of ninjas, I will be eternally irked that the ninja costumes are nowhere to be seen in this show, dropped in favour of generic henchmen. No idea why they did that. They must have had costumes left over from Daredevil.
     
  18. metaphysician Not a Side-Kick

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    Maybe they just didn't want to remind the audience of better shows. Or maybe they actually *didn't* have enough costumes, and so just got cheap and lazy.
     

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