ABC Developing HULK TV Series; Marvel Also Eyes THE PUNISHER and CLOAK AND DAGGER for Television

     October 14, 2010


When Disney bought Marvel last year, we dreamt of Marvel characters gracing the broadcast television network that Disney happens to own: ABC.  Such is finally coming to fruition, as news comes there is a major push to get Hulk back on television nearly three decades after the Bill Bixby/Lou Ferrigno series The Incredible Hulk (1978-1982) went off the air.  There is no showrunner attached yet, but recently knighted Marvel Television head Jeph Loeb (Heroes) is on the lookout.

But that’s not all, folks!  Marvel prepared a presentation of several titles they felt were suitable for adaptation.  Among them, Cloak and Dagger and The Punisher seem most likely to enter development next.  Hit the jump for the full list of possible adaptations.

heroes_for_hire_luke_cage_comic_book_imageAccording to Heat Vision, Marvel execs presented the following as possible series:

Heroes for Hire — focusing on ex-con Luke Cage offering to take on bad guys for a price

The Eternals — a race of superpowered beings live amid humanity in secret, inspiring legends

Agents of Atlas — a superhero team comprised of Gorilla-Man, Jimmy Woo, M-11, The Uranian, Namora, and Venus

Alter Ego — private investigator Jessica Jones takes on cases involving superhumans

The Hood — a low-rent criminal discovers a cloak that gives him superpowers

Ka-Zar — a Tarzan-type and his saber-toothed tiger must journey to the concrete jungle to seek justice

Daughters of the Dragon — a dynamic female duo, one with a bionic arm and the other a granddaughter of a samurai, open a private-detective agency

The Punisher — one man wages a war on crime; already adapted as two feature films


This is where my general lack of comic knowledge comes back to haunt me, so I’d really appreciate any input in the comments as to which of these would make a truly awesome TV show.

Though not on the list, Cloak and Dagger appears to be priority #2 for Marvel Television.  Loeb is currently meeting with writers to develop the show as an ABC Family vehicle.

cloak_and_dagger_comic_book_imageFor comic novices like myself, here is some background info:

Tyrone “Ty” Johnson (Cloak) and Tandy Bowen (Dagger) met in New York City as runaways… The two teens were soon forcibly delivered to a criminal chemist named Simon Marshall, who was developing a new synthetic heroin for Silvermane and the Maggia, testing it on runaway teens with fatal results. Johnson and Bowen somehow survived injections of the drug, and they fled. During their escape, the drug turned them into superpowered beings (it was later revealed that they were both actually mutants, and that the drug had simply awakened their latent abilities). Tyrone found himself engulfed in darkness and seized by a strange hunger which eased in the presence of Tandy, who was glowing with a brilliant light. Trying to hide his newly shadowy appearance in a makeshift cloak, Tyrone began absorbing Marshall’s thugs into his darkness while Tandy struck them down with daggers of light. The two teens dubbed themselves Cloak & Dagger and declared war on drug crime in combating drug-dealers and helping runaway children. [Wikipedia]


I can definitely picture that as a weekly series, though I wonder if “synthetic heroin” makes its way on to ABC Family.


The Punisher is another option, with Marvel considering it down the road as “a cable play.”  The property has already made it’s way through three movies with three different actor: Dolph Lundgren in The Punisher (1989), Thomas Jane in The Punisher (2004) and Ray Stevenson in The Punisher: War Zone (2008).  Here are the specs for this anti-hero:

The Punisher is a vigilante who employs murder, kidnapping, extortion, coercion, threats of violence and torture in his war on crime. Driven by the deaths of his family, who were killed by the mob when they witnessed a gangland execution in New York City’s Central Park, the Punisher wages a one-man war on the mob and all criminals in general by using all manner of conventional war weaponry. His family’s killers were the first to be slain. A war veteran, Castle is a master of martial arts, stealth tactics, guerrilla warfare and a wide variety of weapons. [Wikipedia]

  • Dino_d

    Punisher would be cool as like an HBO show, like the Sopranoes, or Sparticus. You can’t do Punisher without being violent. P.S. The guy who played him War Zone should be cast, because he totally looked and played the the part well.

    • Robert

      Ray Stevenson also has a strong HBO following after his turn as Titus Pullo on Rome. If HBO were to pick up a Punisher series, Ray would definitely be the way to go.

  • Dichotomize

    There have been three Punisher films. The original starred Dolph Lundgren as the titular anti-hero.

    • Liam

      Beat me to it, but yeah. There are three.

    • Brendan Bettinger

      My bad. Added Lundgren.

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  • Mordor89

    so will this hulk series have any cotnuity wih hulk 2008 or avengers?

  • Superzerosix

    Moon Knight and The Hood are two different characters…FYI

    • RAR

      Yeah, you have the description for The Hood (or The Red Hood as listed at Heat Vision; in the comics, it’s just The Hood) under Moon Knight, who is a completely unrelated character.

    • RAR

      Yeah, you have the description for The Hood (or The Red Hood as listed at Heat Vision; in the comics, it’s just The Hood) under Moon Knight, who is a completely unrelated character.

  • Guest

    agents of atlas and Jessica Jones are not one title and don’t mix. Jessica Jones is married to Luck Cage. Get your facts right.

    • Brendan Bettinger

      Sorry for the mixup. Should be sorted.

    • MarvelX42

      WTH is Luck Cage? “Get your facts right.”


    Hulk sounds great.
    Punisher, not bad.
    Dont know the other one.

    Maybe now DC can man up, and bring out an adult themed GOTHAM CITY based series, PRE-Batman, but focussing on Gordon, the GCPD and Arkhams inmates. Maybe a younger Bruce Wayne as cameo’s in vigilante gear. (I’m NOT talking Smallville here folks!!! Just had to get that strait.)

  • Liam

    I would love to see a real, faithful to the source version of Cloak And Dagger on TV. But yeah I don’t think ABC has the balls for it. But since they already have a morality tale as a Super Hero story (No Ordinary Family) they could use something with an edge….

  • AliEndEAth

    Power Pack would fit in perfectly in the ABC/Disney Family and could make an awesome show if handled correctly. Children suddenly imbued with superpowers struggling to “do the right thing” when they’re still trying to learn what the “right thing” is. all while trying to get their homework done on time and keep from being grounded.

  • poopnoop

    If they won’t make a Moon Knight movie, at least let them make a dark and gritty TV series for it because that’s how Moon Knight should be.

  • Rico S

    The Punisher has all the right things going for it to be a great television series. The central character is a perfect example of the classic anti-hero, the overhead for production can’t be too high (how expensive are blanks?) and there could always be an ever-changing storyline. If it’s done in a crimestory fashion, the character of Frank Castle doesnt have to evolve that much, we just follow him in his missions. Sounds like a good idea to me. Definately a showtime or HBO series, however. Any network television editing would take away from what makes The Punisher a good story.

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  • o emmanuelli

    most of the proposed shows would to best on CABLE networks where there is little restriction in what violence can be presented. it would be really sad to show the punisher as a campy anti hero, the same with heroes for hire, of which the DAUGHTERS of the Dragon are also part in the comic book world. Luke Cage and Iron Fist are great characters that would benefit from a BLADEish treatement. aside from that, they might be better served by creating new shows like HEROES and No Ordinary Family.

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  • Jamma Samma

    As long as the superheroes aren’t pushing a new world agenda (like they’re doing in the comics) then that we be cool.
    As long as they shoot it on 35 MM film then that would be great and COLORFUL. Please dont shoot it on high Def Video….the conversion to make it look like film always fails (very dark and not sharp)
    If Disney can put some real creativity/money/and RISK then all will be taken care of by the fans…just dont level it down to the lowest Common Denominator as they’ve done with some of the comic films.
    the 2 best so far were Daredevil and Hulk the 1st one.
    Spidey was ok but something was missing. The CG effects sometimes were very unrealistic. Such as gravity not following its own laws. but its a comic book film so gravity don’t really exist..what do i know….

  • Jenna

    OMG! Parker Robbins series! *fangirl squeal!* And Cloak and Dagger to boot? *does a jig!* =D