On the day that Daredevil #8 comes out, I thought it was high time I got to the previous issue, which came out two weeks ago. The fact that I didn’t actually get around to reading Daredevil #7 – one week after picking it up at my comic book store – should speak volumes about my current state of “Daredevil depression.” Here’s the thing though, I actually kind of liked this issue. And to clarify, it’s not as if I’ve outright disliked the previous issues, it’s just that I’ve felt like something out of an, albeit pretty well-written, alternative universe story that I’ve been unable to feel emotionally invested in.
I’m still feeling some of that, or not feeling it, as it were, but this issue is a big step up for me. I can’t quite put my finger on why, but it may have been the inclusion of several characters who are not just nameless extras in this story (such as all the people at the D.A.’s office).
Aside from Elektra, whose own two-issue arc is more interesting than many other stories involving this always complicated character, we finally get to meet Foggy again. Which is great, even though he and Matt are not on the best of terms. A conversation with the Night Nurse also makes this story feel a bit more connected to the larger Marvel Universe. As for the twist at the end (spoiler alert: since I’ve taken this long to write about Daredevil #7, I’m going to assume that any readers of this post will have read the issue in question), I kind of expected it. The idea of Matt and Elektra having a child together would have added further confusion to a new status quo that fans are still trying to figure out. I do find the psychological game play pretty interesting though, and I have to wonder if it’s not somehow connected to whatever it is Matt’s done to change people’s memories.
The whole mystery of what kind of deal Matt has made – and with whom – to change people’s memories remains the biggest issue with this volume of Daredevil. I think Charles Soule really needs to hurry up and get to the point where this is finally revealed. I doubt I’m the only one getting impatient. Soule is a very solid writer and odds are he will need to be to make whatever setup they’ve planned work in a way that won’t leave fans scratching their heads. As for recent changes I’m happy to keep, I’m really digging Matteo Buffagni’s artwork. He doesn’t deliver the most flattering take on Foggy I’ve ever seen – or young Matt, for that matter – but overall I’m a big fan. Interesting panel layouts, nice handling of different perspectives and a great match for Matt Milla’s colors, which are finally starting to grow on me.
One last thought before I let you guys head out and get this week’s issue: The topic of whether this run is a good match for the Netflix show or whether that was ever the intention. As far as intentions go, the tail end of volume four of Daredevil was not the best match for the first season of Daredevil, the television show. Regardless of whether you liked both or neither of them, it seems pretty clear that Marvel wasn’t overly concerned about the fact that the two were quite different, both in terms of tone and content.
As for this new volume, the fact that Daredevil and Jessica Jones have been massive hits may have made the comic book people pay a little more attention to whether the book matches up with the show. But that’s assuming that they do, and I don’t really agree that that’s the case. In terms of tone, yes. But, to be fair, the tone of this most recent volume is pretty well in line with how Daredevil has usually been written over the last two decades. In terms of content, I’d expect newcomers to the comic to be almost as confused as they would have been jumping onboard a year ago. The book is mostly populated with new or marginal characters, Karen is nowhere to be found (for obvious reasons), and Foggy is mostly an afterthought. The Night Nurse is the comic book version of the character, not Claire Temple, and Elektra also represents a different take on the character than the one we saw on the show. I don’t think this, in and of itself, is a problem. If Marvel specifically wanted to bring in new fans from the show, my suggestion would be to create a new line of comics built on the MCU.
Okay, one more thing: As you might have guessed, I did enjoy the fact that Matt had to seek out Foggy over something of a “blind issue” and I appreciate that Soule isn’t the type to try to sweep those sorts of things under the rug, but actually incorporates them into the story. So, kudos! And, I think I’m done, bring on the comments!