“Jessica Jones” recap (1.08): A house is not a home

Jessica snaps around and we just know it’s going to be good. Not “good” in the happy and pure sense, but “good” in the righteous and true sense. She looks him straight in the eyes and says, “Yeah, it’s called rape.” Kilgrave doesn’t get it because they stayed in five-star hotels and ate in the best restaurants. Oh, I got it, it’s only rape if you stay at Motel 6 and eat at McDonalds.

But Jessica makes it perfectly clear, rape is when a woman doesn’t want it–any of it. And not only did Kilgrave violate her sexually, he violated “every cell in my body and every thought in my goddamn head.” Kilgrave counters with, “But I didn’t mean it–so we’re cool, right?” No, dude, no.


But he continues his pity party because how is he supposed to know if he is raping someone. Women just always do what he says. Plus he didn’t have loving parents who taught him right from wrong. And he has to be so careful with what he says on account of his mind control and all. Feel sorry for him, his life is so haaaaard.

But Jessica pulls out her Dead Parents trump card and tells him to go to hell. So Kilgrave pulls out his “proof.” It’s that flash drive he had Jessica dig up the night he had her kill Reva. It shows him as a boy being subjected to experiments from his scientist parents. Admittedly, it looked pretty terrible. But then a monster that is created is still a monster that has to be stopped.


Kilgrave is now pouting because nobody–and more specifically Jessica–doesn’t understand him. Jessica, who has been recording everything dutifully, asks if all the bad shit he does is because no one ever taught him how to be good. So she conducts her own experiment to see if he can be taught.

She takes him to the scene of a hostage situation, where a man has been holding his family at gunpoint, to try his hand at that hero thing. He talks them through the police line, she busts them into the house. They rescue the family, and then Jessica stops him from having the father blow his own face off. Kilgrave calls it all a “Waste of energy,” but Jessica asks if it was since he just saved four lives. Guess some folks just aren’t teachable after all.


But Kilgrave is invigorated with the gratitude and worship that comes with that whole being a hero thing. Plus he sees this as a way to balance the scales–take a life, save a life, and come out even on the cosmic balance sheets. Jessica realizes he can’t do good without her as a moral compass, and then leaves to clear her head.

And then we see it; we see the accident that killed Jessica’s family. We flashback to that road trip. A teenage Jessica is refusing to give her little brother back his Gameboy. They squabble, her dad turns to yell at her, and then boom–they crash into the back of a truck.


It’s a scene that has played out with hundreds, thousands, maybe millions of families on road trips–minus, hopefully, the boom-crash part. But that one moment of perfectly normal teenage behavior cost Jessica her entire family.