Earth-shattering news for Marvel fans today with the news that all of The Defenders series are confirmed to be leaving Netflix on March 1st, 2022 around the globe.
As of February 11th, 2022 every single season of Netflix’s Defenders franchise is showing removal notices in select circumstances. The removal notices only appear to show when you first watch a show on a profile.
Netflix has confirmed to us that the series will be departing Netflix on March 1st and that the rights have reverted back to Disney.
The Marvel titles showing removal dates and that are scheduled to leave on March 1st include:
- Daredevil (Seasons 1-3)
- Jessica Jones (Seasons 1-3)
- Luke Cage (Seasons 1-2)
- Iron Fist (Seasons 1-2)
- The Defenders (Limited Series)
- The Punisher (Seasons 1-2)
The removal of this content represents over 160 episodes across a four-year span of releases. Daredevil season 1 first premiered on Netflix in April 2015.
By February 2019, every single show from Marvel onto Netflix was canceled with Jessica Jones season 3 being the final title to come from the partnership in June 2019.
The news of these shows departing Netflix is a blow to the service who have yet to find their feet with their own comic book franchises such as Millarworld but plenty is on the way through collaborations with DC, Boom Studios, Dark Horse Comics, and others.
Why are The Defenders series leaving Netflix?
The news shouldn’t come as a huge shock given that Disney has now started using the characters from the Netflix Marvel shows in its other properties. Just recently, we saw Kingpin in the Disney+ show Hawkeye and Matthew Murdock (Daredevil) made a brief appearance in Spider-Man: No Way Home.
Back in 2018, Disney CEO Bob Iger said they were aggressively pulling back from licensing to other companies. He spoke on an earnings call saying:
“We are fully committed to not only bringing the product to market and making it a long-term success. It has to be the destination for all Disney stuff, and that means ultimately weaning ourselves of our product being available any other place except for our linear channels,”
Back in 2017, Netflix notably lost out to all of Disney’s movies where it had previously held the first window rights for a select number of years.
Disney still has some way to go to claw all of its properties back from Netflix with titles from ABC, Freeform, 20th Century Fox and FX shows still on the platform both in the United States and internationally.
Why these titles are being removed on March 1st, 2022 specifically is unknown.
Below you can see the removal notices that are showing on Netflix for each of the shows:
Where will The Defenders shows stream on Netflix next?
As Netflix has confirmed the rights are reverting back to Disney it’ll be up to them to decide where the shows stream next.
Internationally the show will likely soon appear on Disney+ given that’s currently the home of all things Marvel. In the United States, we could see it either being split between Hulu and Disney+ or exclusive to Hulu given that is where most of Marvel’s older-skewing content has landed in recent years.
Will you miss Marvel’s Defenders series when they leave Netflix? Let us know in the comments.