When it comes to Daredevil – I am not an expert by any means. I know that most hardcore comic book fans put Daredevil on the kind of pedestal guitar fans reserve for the likes of Eric Clapton – but I never quite got it.
The majority of my exposure to DD came in the form of guest spots in Spider-Man or other books that I collected at the time. Plus there was that horrible Incredible Hulk meets Daredevil television movie. He had a sort of dorky costume that didn’t inspire confidence at all:
He’s blind? And a Superhero? And a lawyer? I just didn’t get the appeal.
Then came Frank Miller’s The Man Without Fear.
Miller had already made his mark on Daredevil before. And also on Batman (The Dark Knight Returns – one of the best Batman/Superman stories ever – not sure which came first though – I honestly can’t remember) – the point is, when Miller worked on something, you knew it was going to be incredible.
With this series and the retelling of the origin, I became a fan.
I hate to draw a parallel but what I like was the darkness so similar to Batman. Here we have a child who is orphaned at a young age. Like Batman, he is driven to find some sense of justice. Unlike Batman, he’s not rich and he has a power – he’s blind as a bat (har har) but can also see like one – sort of a radar.
As Matt Murdock, he fights in the court room as a lawyer – always for the little guy. As Daredevil, he fights in the back alley’s of Hells Kitchen where the law doesn’t reach.
He has a sometimes ally and lover in Elektra, as well as a Catholic conscious and sense of guilt that helps drive him and torture him all at the same time. All of this leads to a depth of character that is very appealing.
Plus, he has a arch enemy. The Kingpin.
With The Kingpin, the new, grittier back story and costume, Daredevil became something much cooler in my mind. Everyone else’s too.
Ugh. Yellow costume.
Definitely one of the best from Miller, The Man Without Fear is a favorite of mine.