Daredevil – The Man Without Sick Leave

The panel on the left is from Daredevil #180, written and pencilled by Frank Miller with assistance on art duties by Klaus Jansen. While Miller was the creator of the modern Daredvil story with a solid focus on gritty, street-level stories, there was still quite a bit of humor during his run, much more so than many readers seem to remember. There were also some scenes and events which even strike me as goofy, whether intentional or not.

We all know that Daredevil does not have any kind of magical healing factor. He’s not bullet-proof, can’t erect any force fields and is generally quite vulnerable. That means that he’s been banged up a few times, and even been severly injured on a couple of occasions.

In this panel, we see DD standing on a window ledge leaning on a crutch with his leg in a cast. We all get that he’s got a certain amount of dedication to his craft and all that, but what went through his mind when he decided that it was a good idea to go out with a bum leg? Aside from his diminished fighting capacity, it looks a little silly. Another question that comes to mind – as always as far as Daredevil and bandages are concerned – is why he’s wearing his costume under the cast. Or maybe it actually slides on and off. You know, like it does in animated Disney movies.

Throughout this issue, we see Daredevil dealing with the consequences of his injury. He beats up Turk with his crutch, grabs a cab to get places (and gets asked why he doesn’t have a “Daremobile”…), and then pays a visit to the people who live in the sewers – where Vanessa Fisk is being held captive – where he gives his crutch to a guy who claims to have had his leg eaten by a monster. Yes, the blind hero without a healing factor and an injured leg actually gives his crutch away! What a guy, huh? He then continues on through the tunnels jumping on one leg! He really gives new meaning to the phrase “never give up.”

Matt doesn’t make an out of costume appearance in this issue and thank goodness for that. He’d have to take that enormous cast off, make it fit under his civvies and then hop to work with a crutch in one hand and cane in the other. Then he would also have the unenviable task of explaining all this to Foggy. I’m not sure a simple “I walked into a door” excuse would cover him this time.

But, as Daredevil he is quite successful in this issue. He saves his own and Ben Urich’s life, fights a crocodile on steroids and defeats the nasty Jabba the Hut-esque king of the underground dwellers. Not too shabby, I’d say.

Christine Hanefalk

Christine Hanefalk

Based in Stockholm, Sweden, Christine is a die-hard Daredevil fan who launched The Other Murdock Papers in 2007 to share her passion for Matt Murdock and his friends with other fans.

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