Daredevil review

Posted: May 5, 2015 in Comics, TV

Marvels first series in partnership with Netflix is out of the gate and it’s a winner. Daredevil is basically Marvel’s The Wire. The story sees young lawyers Matt Murdock and Foggy Nelson set up their own law firm right in the middle of Hells Kitchen. Of course it’s by no means a legal series, this being Marvel we learn Matt is not only blind but at night he also dons a black costume (which looks beyond cool) and fights crime and injustice head on! I haven’t read Daredevil, but I get that it’s meant to be a more gritty and violent part of theĀ Marvel Universe and the show certainly doesn’t shy away from either. It is violent. Like seriously violent. :O was my expression throughout a lot of it. It’s dark tone only helps to set it up as its own unique beast which still exists within the wider Marvel Cinematic Universe.

Back to the Wire comparison, now that is a show I am very familiar with and time and time again I kept being reminded of it watching Daredevil. It has the same feel as in the show is as much about the city, the citizens and their plights as it is about a guy who happens to be a super hero. The same can be applied to the characters. There is a lot of grey in the show. No black and white. You won’t outright hate the bad guys. Although one or two are outright horrors and you will be cheering when Daredevil smacks them into next week! Yes some of them, they do horrible things but from their point of view what they are doing is either justified (in their opinion they are the good guy!) or you see how the way the city works and life in general has shaped them into behaving the way they do.

A lot of what makes the show work is the brilliant casting. Charlie Cox is outstanding as Matt Murdock. He gives him such an easy going likeability while at the flip of switch he’s able to turn the character into a deadly and crusading vigilante. He has strong support from Deborah Ann Woll and Elden Henson who play his colleagues, as well as a winning turn from Rosario Dawson who plays Claire Temple who is a nurse who finds herself swept up in Matt/Daredevils world. The real standout is without a doubt Vincent D’Onofrio as Wilson Fisk (The Kingpin). D’Onofrio packs Fisk with layer upon layer of character. His story is just as compelling as Matt’s and it’s easily one of the best performances I have seen in a long time regardless of genre (and I’d expect nothing less from An Adventures in Babysitting vet!).

Credit has to be given to Marvel and the showrunners for not compromising in bringing the character to the screen. I think another point I’d like to make is that I firmly believe that TV is the best medium for these comic adaptations. The format allows for so much more character development, plot progression and no sense of anyone or plot point being compromised in order to keep to a running time. One day when the budgets catch up and special effects are more affordable I think TV would be the ideal home for a lot of the major comic franchises from Spiderman, X-Men, Justice League to Spawn!

I can’t wait for season 2 which was announced last week! This is great news because at first I believe Marvels plan was to follow Daredevil with Jessica Jones later this year, then Luke Cage and Iron Fist in 2016 with a team up series The Defenders debuting in 2017! Which would have meant it would be late 2017/early 2018 before we got more solo Daredevil, which now looks set to debut next year instead!

I plan to check out the source material as soon as possible. I’d love to hear what the actual comic fans thought of the show so be sure to let me know in the comments!

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