Hello all. Believe it or not, but I do have a half-baked post about Bullseye ready for publication some time between now and whenever Daredevil, season three, comes out. And, I have so many things I want to say about the second season of Iron Fist, most of them good. What I found most impressive about it was the serious amount of world building that happens that I think is setting us up for som major developments in a future season three (trust me, there will be one).
What prompted me to come out of what probably looks like semi-retirement (it really isn’t) this time, however, was the teaser released by the official Daredevil twitter account a few hours ago. It actually started making the rounds last week, but I didn’t watch it myself until now. I’ll admit it, it was definitely a bit of a shock. A “what the actual f*#! am I looking at” kind of shock. One that made me wonder, if only for a flash second, whether this will the time I throw in the towel for good. Then I took a chill pill, and got over myself.
What I reacted to initially was not only the tiresome insistence on diminishing the role of “Matt Murdock” reflected here, as purposefully out of character as it may be, but the drastic change in Matt’s voice. This makes me wonder whether it’s actually even him. Alternatively, is he having a psychotic episode? Or is he being possessed by some demonic entity (Shadowland anyone)?
Long-time readers may even remember when Bullseye took over Daredevil’s identity during the end of Ann Nocenti’s run as Daredevil writer (see panels from Daredevil #290, with art by Kieron Dwyer, below), and managed to severely tarnish Daredevil’s reputation. Considering that Bullseye is pretty much guaranteed to make an appearance, this storyline might have some relevance.
If this is indeed Matt (which, despite the very strange-sounding voice, is probably more plausible), I definitely prefer a physical explanation, such as a severe mental breakdown, to a mystical one. Clearly, Daredevil exists in a world where mystical forces exist, but I much prefer him in the more grounded stories which make up the majority of the character’s canon. Besides, isn’t the Beast, or something similar, taking the helm a huge cop out that doesn’t provide any real character growth?
I will say this though: Matt being in a really strange place at the beginning of the season is about the only valid reason I could think of for his staying away for several months without letting anyone know that he’s alive.
Perhaps my biggest concern is this sense, going back to the two previous seasons, that the people behind the Netflix show don’t quite know what to do with Matt Murdock, the civilan identity. Presenting the conflict that is at the core of Daredevil, and the challenge of balancing the two sides, is one thing. But Daredevil isn’t Batman. Matt, the lawyer, is not just a convenient secret identity. Matt has tried to run away from his life many times in the comics, and it never ends well. Hopefully, that realization is what we will be left with in the end.