Kilgrave’s 10 Most Disturbing Uses of Mind Control

In celebration of season 2 of Jessica Jones being released on Netflix, I looked back at season 1.

The true sadism behind season 1 baddie, Kilgrave, is that he always forces others to carry out the evil actions he wants done.

For this list, I’m leaving out anything he made Jessica do. That could fill up a whole list on its own, and much of it’s off screen before the series starts, and I wanted to focus more on the uses we see the effects of. Though I’d like to give an honorable mention to the victim who garnered the comment, “I once told a man to go screw himself. Can you even imagine?”

10. Donald Abandons His Son

We don’t see this one first hand. Through the Kilgave survivor support group, we hear several people recount their run-in’s with the psychopath.

It’s likely that the worst is Donald. His son was in the car with him, when Kilgrave decided to make Donald his chauffeur. Donald’s son was being fussy, and Kilgrave told Donald to leave the kid behind and drive away. Donald went on to be charged with child abandonment.

Donald’s son and the kids Kilgrave forces in the closet are likely to keep future psychiatrists employed for years.

9. Threatening to Kill the Entire Police Force

David Tennant GIFThis entry wins for eeriest. Jessica walks in to find the entire station has drawn their guns and are all pointing them at each other. They all look as though they’ve been frozen in time, except for occasionally blinking.

Moments later, Kilgrave confronts Jessica, using the entire station as leverage. Kilgrave throws around some verbal abuse, terrorizes Jessica, and disappears again. But before he leaves, he tells them all that this was a joke, and they’ll find it funny. Sure enough, everyone, other than Jessica, who’s immune to Kilgrave’s powers, bursts into smiles and laughter. But it’s not happy laughter. It’s forced, and it makes your skin crawl.

8. Kilgrave Replicates Jessica’s Childhood Home

This one’s actually really horrific. It’s basically a way for Kilgrace to retcon his way into Jessica’s past and rape her childhood memories.

All he has to do to get the house, is buy it from the residents. And he doesn’t even force them to move. He buys it from them for twice what it’s worth and puts the neighbors to work, finding replications of all the house’s items he’s seen in old pictures.

Kilgrave then convinces Jessica to live in the house. Being in the house is difficult for her anyway; it’s where her family lived, but her family’s all gone now.

7. Wendy Tries to Kill Hogarth with 1000 Cuts

Divorces are always difficult. Wendy and Hogarth’s was especially messy. Almost as messy as their marriage.

Hogarth makes the mistake of taking an injured Kilgrave to Wendy after he escapes from Jessica.

He quietly let’s them argue, soaking up all the information he can, waiting to use it against them. Wendy makes the mistake of using the metaphor of Hogarth killing her with 1000 cuts. So Kilgrave tells Wendy to kill Hogarth with 1000 cuts, allowing him to escape. After he leaves, Wendy attacks, counting each cut she gives to Hogarth. Pam shows up before Hogarth is murdered, but Wendy is then killed in self-defense.

6. Robyn, Malcolm, Jackson, and Donald Are Nearly Hanged

This could arguably be placed higher on the list, because of what happens in the fallout.

Kilgrave abducts Hope after she’s released from jail (for a crime Kilgrave forced her to do). Jessica attempts to rescue her, but Kilgrave anticipates her response. He has mind control over Robyn, Malcolm, Jackson, and Donald, all wearing nooses and standing at the edge of a counter.

Hope realizes that Jessica will have to choose between saving her or the others, so Hope slits her own throat, leaving Jessica to save the members of the support group and Kilgrave without collateral.

5. Hope Kills her Parents

The moment that ended the first episode of the season is one of the harshest. It sets the events of the series in motion. Hope’s murders, under Kilgrave’s control, push Jessica to fight back against Kilgrave, when she originally wanted to run away.

Hope’s parents came to Jessica, asking her to help them find their missing daughter. After discovering her disappearance is connected to Kilgrave, Jessica must undergo a harrowing rescue.

Once she returns Hope to her parents, Jessica thinks the whole messy case is in the past, only to discover that Hope is still under Kilgrave’s control. She shoots both her parents, apparently a safeguard Kilgrave put in place before she escaped.

4. Ruben Kills Himself

Ruben’s live was already being controlled by his overbearing sister. After developing a crush on Jessica, Ruben would make banana bread and bring it to her apartment/office.

Though Jessica had little interest in Ruben, she seemed to pity him. Though socially awkward, Ruben was perhaps the most innocent character in the entire season.

It was simply bad luck that he came to Jessica’s door when Kilgrave broke in, and Ruben admitted he had feelings for Jessica to Kilgrave. Kilgrave set the stage for Jessica to discover Ruben, in her bed, throat slit, the knife still in his hand.

3. Malcolm Becomes a Junkie

When we first meet Malcolm, we assume he’s like any number of unfortunate New York residents hooked on drugs. The truth runs deeper than that.

6 months prior to the start of the season, Malcolm had been leading a reasonably comfortable and normal life. He was in college, wanting to become a social worker and help people. Then Kilgrave got to him. He turned him into a drug addict and had him move into Jessica’s apartment and spy on her.

It’s even worse in retrospect, because Malcolm becomes such a strong ally for Jessica. Kilgrave goes on to try to kill Malcolm later in the season (see #6). Luckily, Jessica manages to save him.

2. Simpson Attacks Trish

Attacking Trish is severe, if not unexpected. Trish, without question, is the most important person in Jessica’s life. What makes Simpson’s attack worse, is that he gets tangled up in the Kilgrave situation, creating complications for Jessica.

He has fewer and fewer qualms with killing people, and Jessica and Trish find it harder and harder to get him to leave them alone. He then takes too many of the wrong pills and becomes a dangerous antagonist in his own right, becoming more like his comic book counterpart, Nuke.

1. Luke Is Mind-Controlled

Jessica and Luke are yin and yang to each other. The woman strong enough to break anything and the man who can’t be broken.

Throughout the season, Jessica is hiding a dark secret. That, while being controlled by Kilgrave, she killed Luke’s wife.

But after repeatedly running into Luke, Jessica falls for him. She tries to keep her feelings out of it, but fails. But look seems to feel the same about her, until he discovered the truth walks away.

After his bar is destroyed, they’re reunited, and he tells her all the things she wanted to hear. Particularly that he forgives her. They track down Kilgrave only for Jessica to discover that ever since finding Luke at the bar, Luke was under Kilgrave’s control, and everything he said to her was from a script Kilgrave had written for him. The only way for Jessica to snap Luke out of it is to, literally, shoot him in the head. Luckily, he survives, but their relationship’s been a little rocky since then.



About Risa Romano

Writer type thing. I work on stories for kids when I'm on the clock and screenplays quite a bit less for kids when I'm not. I have a blog: I'm also the creator and moderator of the Doctor Who vodcast/podcast A Disused Yeti:
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