Actress Krysten Ritter on what a character like "Jessica Jones" means to women

Actress Krysten Ritter made her mark on Hollywood with roles in hit shows like "Veronica Mars" and "Breaking Bad." Now, she's making her mark on the comic book universe as the star of Netflix series "Marvel's Jessica Jones." Jones is a private investigator possesses superhuman strength, and at the end of the series' first season she kills her tormenter.

"I remember when I got the episode script when that happened. I cheered because it needed to happen. It was really a difficult journey for Jessica to get to that point. She doesn't want to be a murderer, but that was really the only option for her," Ritter told "CBS This Morning." 

"She is a girl that is marked by trauma. She struggles. She has PTSD. She drinks too much. She hardly gets by. And the fact that she has these powers and this attention on her kind of goes against everything that she is."

One of the ways Jones' nemesis taunts her is by constantly telling her to smile.

"Around the time we were making that show, remember that that video that came out of the woman walking around Manhattan and everyone being like, 'smile, smile,'" Ritter recalled. "It was such a way that it kind of didn't make her feel great and then our show came out and we used that message."

Jones' struggle with PTSD in the series has helped the character – and Ritter – connect with a female audience.

"I've had women come up to me and say that they feel represented. It's made them feel better about what they've been through in their own lives. And then just simply seeing a badass female character like this has meant a lot to a lot of women," Ritter said.

She credits Marvel's focus on the characters' back stories for helping create that connection.

"They kind of go underneath the superhero powers," she said. "They let you fall in love with the person underneath all of that and you root for them."