Episode Title: AKA Top Shelf Perverts
Original Air Date: 11/20/2015
Malcolm, Simpson and Trish go rogue to prevent Jessica from carrying out an extreme plan to outwit Kilgrave.
In this episode we see the lengths to which Jessica will go to in order to find some way of catching Kilgrave, even if it is the worst decision possible, with her decision to go to a supermax prison to wait for Kilgrave. It shows the sheer desperation the character is in, compounded by what Kilgrave did to Ruben at the start of the episode and Ritter plays this desperation brilliantly. The scenes where she accepts going to prison and makes calls to those around her for unfinished business is brilliantly handled, mainly due to the subtlety of Ritter’s acting. We also see that the panic in Jessica’s mind is impairing her judgement, mainly in relation to her plan. We see that Trish and Simpson have a much more effective plan for finding Kilgrave, and we see that it works, them finding out that Kilgrave has bought Jessica’s old house and this reinforces the poor state of mind that Jessica is in due to the stress brought on by Kilgrave.
We also get some backstory for Trish as well in the episode, mainly in relation to her mum. Originally, I thought that Trish’s mum would be a typical, celebrity mum but here we see that her mum was abusive towards Trish, only took Jessica in for the publicity rather than because it was the right thing to do and kept drug dealers around Trish, with all this leading to Trish getting a restraining order on her mum. Through this, we see the psychological damage that being a child star has done to Trish, along with the importance of the friendship Trish and Jessica have, along with the romance between Trish and Simpson.
This episode also adds more detail to Jeri Hogarth, showing more of the amoral side of the character in relation to finding out that she bribed jurors in the past to ensure favourable verdicts and her lack of opposition to what Jessica did to her wife to get her to sign the divorce papers until it inconveniences her. We also see that she is more than willing to keep secrets from those she loves, mainly her wife and girlfriend, but we also see that Hogarth does care for Pam. We also see that Pam is a really good defence attorney, finding a pretty solid way to get Jessica out of prison despite Jessica’s protests, with this side of the episode leading into a good but underutilised appearance from Clarke Peters.
Once again I have to talk about how good David Tennant is as Kilgrave. The obsession he has for Jessica comes full force here as he is replicating Jessica’s home to look exactly like it was when she was there, down to the lamps. This adds into this incredibly creepy vibe Tennant has, especially at the end of the episode when he reveals that he’s been doing everything to Jessica because of some sick vision of love he has for Jessica, wanting to make her realise that he is the only one who could understand Jessica and this charmingly creepy psychopathic side to Kilgrave is something that Tennant does incredibly well. This also shows how ahead of Jessica Kilgrave is as Kilgrave came up with a solution to get Jessica to come with him and stop her going to jail, probably before Jessica thought up of her plan, with the episode being another great show for Kilgrave’s powers when he gets a full police station to point their guns at each other. I feel like I’m repeating myself because of how much praise I’m giving him but his performances keep topping themselves episode after episode. He’s up there with Tom Hiddleston and Vincent D’Onofrio in terms of strong villains in the MCU.
AKA Top Shelf Perverts once again shows how good a show Jessica Jones is. Ritter and Tennant are as great as ever here, the episode being a great show of the damage that is being done to Jessica by Kilgrave, it adds more details to some of the secondary characters and it’s had probably the best ending in the show so far, being incredibly tense, creepy and funny and sets up the next episode to be a great mind bender.