It’s a new dawn for Matt Murdock who’s sworn to put off being Daredevil. Meanwhile, Kingpin stews and Detective Cole gets a rough treatment from his coworkers.
After the non-stop previous arc, Chip Zdarsky slows things down just a bit. We’ve had all the action, so now it’s time for the reactions. Here we get to see our heroes and villains settle into a new status quo. But that doesn’t mean there are new threats on the horizon.
An inspired addition to Daredevil’s character roster has been Cole. Established as a towering do-gooder in the corrupt force, he’s cut down to size by the Captain who’s having none of his Daredevil nonsense. It’s great to see this Serpico figure, who’s been in charge previously, get instantly stopped in his tracks by the chain of command. Writers always need to keep thinking of new obstacles for their protagonists, and this is a good one.
Less exciting is when a gaggle of dirty cops follow Cole and try to beat him up. While it ends up setting the stage for a potential new foe, we’ve seen this cliché many times before — the most obvious example being Gordon from Batman: Year One, which Cole seems heavily based on.
Matt has a charming little interaction with a shop owner and then, best of all, he sponsors an addict. In order to show Matt and us that he can do good without Daredevil, Zdarsky gives us a strong example of Matt’s powers and personality helping in what could be consider a more mundane circumstance. Of course Matt will don the red tights eventually, but it’s just as satisfying to see him help in this way.
There’s not much to say about Kingpin without getting into light spoilers, but he’s definitely based off of the Netflix version. It’s impossible not to read Fisk’s dialog in Vincent D’Onofrio’s belabored voice. However, more striking is we begin and end on a couple shopkeepers dealing with protection fees. Without giving anything away, it leaves us on a game-changing ending. Who says heroes can’t be normal people?
While it’s sad to not have Marco Checchetto on art this issue, Lalit Kumar Sharma exceeds at elevating scenes of dialog, of which there are many this issue. One technique used to great effect is the bird’s-eye view, which is utilized in almost every scene, but subtly. This issue takes place across NYC, and Sharma gives us just enough details to put us right in Central Park or a dusty bookstore. Although, every character has to be muscular and fit in some way; as if they want to burst out of their civilian clothes, which often come across as goofy despite the fairly grounded story so far.