The Devil of Hell’s Kitchen has returned. Sure he may have had a building dropped on him, but you didn’t really expect that to stop the man without fear, did you? Charlie Cox and the gang are back for season 3 of Netflix’s Daredevil, and to celebrate that they’re hanging out with fans at New York Comic Con.
Alongside Cox (Matt Murdock) are series stars Elden Henson (Foggy Nelson), Deborah Ann Woll (Karen Page), Vincent D’Onofrio (Wilson Fisk), Joanne Whalley (Sister Maggie), Wilson Bethel (Benjamin Poindexter), and Jay Ali (Rahul Nadeem), joined by series showrunner Erik Oleson and Executive Producer and Marvel’s head of television Jeph Loeb.
Before the panel got rolling a highlight reel of every Marvel series on Netflix played, and some shots of Daredevil season 3 closed it out.
“At the beginning of season 3, Matt is at an all time low,” said Cox. “We got to enjoy a series of convalescence, healing physical and spiritually. On this journey he’s helped by sister Maggie, played by one of my heroes, Joanne. She brought so much energy to the set — everyone loved her, she became part of the family.”
“Well, I had no idea what to expect. I had never read a comic book in my life. I don’t know who anyone is dressed up as today. Actually, I know a few now,” shared Whalley. “I had the most wonderful experience. I thought it was going to be very different and not so great. But it was so wonderful. Everyone has been incredible. I’ve never been on a job where everyone on the cast and crew has been so excited for the scripts to come out.”
Loeb has his assistant turn the crank and play a clip from season 3 showing Sister Maggie taking care of Matt’s injuries that were incurred at the end of Defenders. As Maggie changes his gauze and dressings, she tells Matt that she knows he’s the Devil of Hell’s Kitchen. “I never imagined one of ours running around Hell’s Kitchen jumping off buildings. Things you can do, were you faking your blindness the whole time?” remarks Maggie. “There must be someone I can call for you.” Matt tells her “No. There’s no one.”
“Well, Maggie provides a spiritual and moral compass to Matt this season,” said Oleson. “She plays a very critical role in helping him to process with emotional honesty everything he has gone through. That was a very critical building block for where Matt will end up this season. She did it with such gravitas. It just kept getting better and better.”
“I’m a huge fan of dramas that treat every character as the hero of their own story,” continued Oleson. “Every single character sitting on this stage plays an integral part; without them, the whole thing falls apart. Karen and Foggy play a part in telling how to defeat fear. The prescription as I saw it, the power of the free press. The power of law. The power of friendship, faith and love, will pull us through.”
Loeb played another clip in which Karen meets with Foggy in a butcher shop, insisting that there’s a chance that Matt could still be alive. Foggy dismisses her theory, stating “It could be anyone. Hell’s Kitchen is ground zero for vigilantes.” Foggy is convinced that Matt would have reached out to them if he were still alive and after driving the point angrily home, Karen becomes upset and storms out.
“So I think Foggy is trying to find out who he is without Matt,” said Henson. “He’s trying to find his footing without his best friend and umm yeah he’s just. We get to meet some of Foggy’s family, his dad and brother.”
“I’ve been considering how things were left with Karen and Matt at the end of season 2,” said Woll. “Lots of guilt left at the end of Defenders. Karen’s never really had a home. I think I felt really adrift. Foggy off doing his fabulous life. If he’s gone, the alternative is too much to take, so she’s holding on.”
Loeb reminds the audience that Jay Ali’s character, Rahul Nadeem, is an FBI agent. Agent Nadeem receives what’s commonly referred to as the worst detail in the world. “I get put in charge of Wilson Fisk and it goes really well,” said Ali sarcastically.
The third video clip of the panel plays and we see agent Nadeem and Fisk meeting one-on-one in jail. Fisk admits to having made many mistakes and accepts the debt he’s paying because of them, but he doesn’t accept that the woman he loves should have to pay for them too. Fisk tells Nadeem, “I would do anything to protect her. Anything,” After which Fisk tells Nadeem that he wants to make a deal with the FBI, seemingly to protect Vanessa.
“First, I wanna say hello to everybody. Thank you for being here and supporting us all. We work very hard and we appreciate it so much,” said D’Onofrio. “So, yeah, I like playing this part.”
“What he does is he notices a thread of disease in a certain person and he pulls on that thread and he knows if he pulls hard enough, he will get what he wants and that’s Vanessa back in his life. And once he has her he is defined, he is complete,” continued D’Onofrio. “And then there’s a little gnat that bothers him.” At this point D’Onofrio slowly turned and looked at Charlie Cox, which caused the audience to collectively burst into laughter.
“It’s kind of weird to be a hero and a gnat. The truth is it’s an honor to be a gnat in the world of Vincent D’Onofrio,” said Cox. “We’ve been lucky enough to have Vincent for the whole first season, he popped in here and there in season 2, and we’re so lucky to have him for all of season 3. He elevates the show so much.”
“I wanted the action sequences of seasons 3 to have real emotional stakes. I wanted them to be unpredictable. I wanted Matt Murdock to occasionally lose a fight and for there to be real consequences when that happens,” said Oleson.
Olsen asked the audience, “You guys like the hallway fight scene?” To which the crowd went wild with applause for. “Yeah, we topped that.”
A fourth clip is shown, which opens with Matt choking Fisk’s lawyer, Benjamin Donovan, in his car to get information on why Fisk cut a deal. This is quickly followed by Matt beating the trash out of a squadron of FBI agents as they attempt to take him out with lethal force.
“There’s another FBI agent whose name is Dex, and well…let’s see who the FBI brings in to handle this sort of situation in this clip,” said Loeb teasingly to the audience.
This clip shows Fisk in transit somewhere in cuffs and orange jumpsuit. The transport is attacked and all the FBI agents guarding Fisk are killed in a shootout. The killer’s attempt to get to Fisk when suddenly a single FBI agent appears: Poindexter, who proceeds to take them out.
“Working with Vincent was one of the great pleasures of my career. As Jeph alluded to, this is the beginning of a weird relationship you’ll see develop over the course of the season. Vincent was very supportive of me as an actor and took me under his wing,” shared Bethel. “Unfortunately for Dex, he gets taken under Fisk’s wing and the result of that is not so positive.”
“I think it’s safe to say that maybe the worst kept secret in the history of Marvel is that this season we would be telling an origin story for one of the more iconic characters,” said Loeb. “And I think we want to have the opportunity to be able to say his name, but I think Wilson has earned the right to tell people the story of who you’re going to become.”
Loeb then had another clip played, which showed a mentally damaged Poindexter slowly descend into madness and become the villain we all know as Bullseye.
“Honestly, it was one of the most incredible experiences of my life, having the opportunity to tell the story of how Benjamin Pointdexter will ultimately become Bullseye.” shared Wilson. At this point, Erik Oleson ran over and drew a bullseye on his forehead, much to the delight of the crowd.
“Bullseye is one of the greatest villains in any of the comics, period. I think [something we needed] in order to fit in with the emotionally honest and character-driven narrative of this show, was telling the story of a real person teetering on the edge of light and darkness. What are the aspects of fear?” shared Oleson. “How does someone like Wilson Fisk turn someone who could be a productive member of society into a villain? The way that Fisk pulls a psychological manipulation on him and worms his way into Benjamin Poindexter’s life in a way that feels like it could really happen is incredible.”
“And it feels really, really weird,” Added Bethel.
“Marvel gave us a lot of room to go very deeply into how Dex became this iconic character.” Oleson added.
“Well, with everybody on this cast, everybody is so talented. Jay Ali was amazing to work with. Wilson is you know, we would be on set from the first time that we met. And I think that we looked into each other’s eyes and…” said D’Onofrio. “It’s just amazing to work with really talented actors that have a lot of guts. To play Bullseye you have to have a lot of guts. I recognized that in Wilson immediately. He put 100% effort into each take and you know there were some intense moments on set that were thrilling.”
“Yeah, I’ve got a lot to answer for.” joked Ali. “I think all the characters in this season have to make a choice whether to stay in the light or move into the darkness. Sometimes you have to pick a side, which one you believe in and which one you’ll fight for.”
The last clip of the evening closed out the panel. We witness Foggy arriving in what appears to be Karen’s office and the lights are out and people are dead. Daredevil is seemingly standing there in the darkness among corpses. He throws one of Daredevil’s signature fighting sticks at Foggy, and Matt catches it, wearing his season 1 costume. The two fighters slowly circle one another as Foggy runs the hell out of the room. Matt asks “Who are you?” to which Bullseye replies “I’m Daredevil.” Cue epic fight scene, and by the end Matt is unconscious at Bullseye’s feet.
Be sure to check back with us for more Daredevil season 3 reveals, spoilers and news.