While there was significant reason to celebrate when (spoiler!) Jessica killed Kilgrave at the end of Jessica Jones Season 1, there was one major downside — no more David Tennant. Still, fans had been alerted that Kilgrave will be in Jessica Jones Season 2. But set your expectations for the March 8 premiere accordingly, since he's not a main character this season and may only appear in a single episode.
Jessica Jones first premiered in December 2015 and since then, Tennant has kept extremely busy with other projects. The last season of Broadchurch aired, he voiced Scrooge McDuck in Disney XD's reboot of DuckTales, and he landed a leading role opposite Michael Sheen in the highly-anticipated miniseries Good Omens. Yet, he found time in his schedule to make an appearance in Season 2 of Jessica Jones despite his character dying in the Season 1 finale.
"He's such a part of her construction and her dilemma," Rosenberg told Entertainment Weekly. "I think just having him come back and be that mirror again is really important." Rosenberg wouldn't elaborate on how he'd return, but based on his apparent death — and his ability to get inside people's heads — it seems safest to assume that Kilgrave will appear just as a memory or vision.
Jessica Jones star Krysten Ritter was also involved in the EW interview about Kilgrave and said, "Having David back on set was amazing. We had such a great run the first season, and it felt like a celebration, having him back. The content is maybe not much of a celebration [laughs], but having him be present and spending time with him on a personal level kind of felt like one."
Jessica would have plenty of baggage even without Kilgrave, but his mind control had her dealing with post-traumatic stress disorder at the beginning of Season 1. And he continued to manipulate her throughout the first season in an effort to get her back, leaving a trail of bodies in his wake that Jessica felt responsible for. So it's understandable that Ritter says the content where he reappears in Season 2 isn't a celebration — even if these two actors have a charming dynamic off screen.
Mild spoilers for Jessica Jones Season 2 follow.
As for when he will show up in Season 2, you'll most likely have to get through the bulk of the 13 episodes before you catch a glimpse of Kilgrave. It's unclear if he will only be in one episode, but the Netflix press site has the photos featuring Kilgrave pegged to Episode 11. And what's extremely exciting for Tennant fans is that the title of that episode might just be an indication that Jessica's tormentor is not actually dead. Before you write this off as simply wishful thinking fueled by an unbridled love of David Tennant (which is also at play here), there's some weight to this theory. The episode is called "AKA Three Lives and Counting," which could be a reference to the number of lives that Kilgrave has — "has" present tense.
Sure, Jessica killed Kilgrave at the end of Season 1, but he could have somehow survived. After all, Jessica thought Kilgrave had died when a bus hit him after he ordered her to kill Luke Cage's wife. So it wouldn't really be out of the question for that to happen again and for him to be on this third life. After all, in the comics, there are at least two instances where Kilgrave is presumed dead, but isn't. In one of those cases, he was unconscious and buried alive, but his body was able to slowly heal itself. This ability to regenerate (Doctor Who reference totally intentional) wasn't explored on Jessica Jones, but the series could be introducing it if Kilgrave does end up being alive. The Season 2 photos also have Kilgrave in his trademark color of purple, which could be a sign that the show will focus on his Purple Man persona from the comics in future seasons.
No matter if Kilgrave is alive or dead, he will be far from Jessica's biggest problem in Season 2. So you might not even be missing Tennant's performance (that much) by the time he shows up toward the end of the season. And whether his appearance is one last hurrah or a tease of more things to come from Kilgrave, fans will be happy to see him while Jessica will decidedly not be.