Marvel's 'Adventure into Fear' could introduce a whole new world of characters including the Midnight Sons and the Darkhold Redeemers
Marvel Television head Jeph Loeb has teased that Marvel's Hulu shows will be exploring the more terrifying side of the MCU with projects like ‘Ghost Rider’ and ‘Helstrom’, which suggests we may be looking at the first steps towards a massive supernatural crossover
With the huge strides Marvel Studios is taking towards telling huge epic stories on the big screen, it can be easy to forget that the studio also has a series of animated and live-action shows that are scheduled to appear on Hulu in the near future. And while Phase 4 is expected to take the Marvel Cinematic Universe to a cosmic level, the Hulu shows will be exploring the more terrifying side of the MCU with projects like ‘Ghost Rider’ and ‘Helstrom’.
“There is in the comic book world the Spirit of Vengeance,” Marvel Television head Jeph Loeb told Deadline. “And they are this sort of unusual group of characters, which involve Ghost Rider, which involve Helstrom, which involves Helstrom’s sister, Anna. We suddenly saw that there were three or four shows that we could put together that we now refer to as Adventure into Fear.” Loeb also clarified that what Marvel TV is aiming for is “terror”, not “horror”.
“It’s terror, because when you say horror, it means so many different things,” he explained. “There’s everything from 'Saw,' which is the last thing that we want to do, gore-fest kind of thing to there’s a monster running around. What we love is the notion of how we can present a Marvel hero who was truly feared and truly believed that they were a monster, but that, as the stories go on, they realize, oh, I’m the hero of the story, I’m not the villain of the story. That’s not something we’ve ever done before. So we started with Ghost Rider, we went out and managed to get Gabriel Luna to come back and reproduce the role he played on S.H.I.E.L.D. Then we’re going to do Helstrom, and then there’s a couple more that we haven’t yet revealed to the world.”
Loeb’s comments have opened up a whole new world of possibilities that might spill out of the Hulu shows to include some of the movies as well. While ‘Helstrom’ and Gabriel Luna's ‘Ghost Rider’ are both planned as linked shows, the characters have very strong ties in the comics to both Doctor Strange (Benedict Cumberbatch) and the vampire-hunter Blade, who was portrayed by Wesley Snipes in the original 'Blade' trilogy, and is set to be played by Mahershala Ali in the planned MCU reboot.
Both Strange and Blade have movies coming up in Phase 4 and Phase 5, so we may be looking at the first steps towards a massive supernatural crossover, which might begin with the Hulu shows and the upcoming movie 'Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness'.
Marvel Comics has a vast pantheon of popular supernatural characters they can tap into. This includes Blade’s team of supernatural detectives, the Nightstalkers, and other characters like Elsa Bloodstone and the Darkhold Redeemers.
The Darkhold Redeemers are a group of heroes dedicated to finding the evil magical book known as the Darkhold (which has already made an appearance on ‘Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.’) and keeping it out of the wrong hands. They, along with Doctor Strange, Morbius the Living Vampire, Ghost Rider, Blade, Blade’s friends Hannibal King and Frank Drake, made up the Midnight Sons, arguably the most popular supernatural team-up in the comics.
Of Marvel’s supernatural properties, only Morbius has a bit of a tricky rights situation as the character is associated with the ‘Spider-Man’ franchise and therefore technically a property of Sony, who are planning on introducing the character in a movie starring Jared Leto. This might make it harder to bring the character in for a Midnight Sons movie or show but Marvel can quite easily replace him with Helstrom or a different character altogether.
The possibilities that have been opened up by this new direction are limitless and we are extremely excited to see where this "Adventure into Fear" might take us. Could we expect a Darkhold Redeemers show? Will Marvel take inspiration from DC’s ‘Swamp-Thing’ and make a show on their own swamp monster, the Man-Thing? Could the ‘Blade’ movie bring about a grand crossover like Midnight Sons?
It’s truly a brave new world and literally, anything is possible.
‘Ghost Rider’ and ‘Helstrom’ will make their debuts on Hulu in 2020. Sony’s ‘Morbius’ is scheduled for release on July 31, 2020. ‘Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness’ will premiere May 7, 2021. ‘Blade’ does not yet have an official release date yet but is expected to arrive as a part of the MCU’s Phase 5 some time in 2022.