Netflix’s Daredevil comes out today and I thought it fitting to put out a little research material that may interest anyone who wants to delve deeper into the world of the man without fear. I’m expecting big things from the show and hopefully it makes up for the less than stellar movie that came out in the early 2000’s. Without further ado, here are my top five recommended Daredevil picks.
5.Daredevil : Gang War
This will be a trend in this post. Frank Miller writes Daredevil really well. IN this story we get two of Daredevil’s greatest enemies ( Kingpin & Bullseye.) gunning for one another. This places our hero in red square in the middle of it all. We also get a fascinating look at the relationship between The Kingpin & his wife Vanessa. It gives him a human side that is quite intriguing considering the brutality of the character. Honestly Frank Miller’s whole run is worth reading and I feel it is my duty to give a nod to the great Klaus Janson. The unsung hero of many of Miller’s greatest works. His pencil finishes along with his wonderful inks were a huge reason Frank Miller’s early stuff looks as good as it does.
Loeb & Sale work as well together as any duo in comics. They produced one of the great Batman tales in “ The Long Halloween.” Daredevil “ Yellow is a high point in their Marvel work. It’s another type of origin story BUT this time it focuses more on the early days of Daredevil in his original Yellow outfit. It’s exquisitely painted and drawn by Tim Sale. I own this story in an extra sized Hard Cover edition that cemnts the gorgeousness of the art. Jeph Loeb can be hit and miss. Mostly miss these days but when he’s on he really nails his characters and is one of the best in playing to his artists strength be it Jim Lee, Ed McGuiness or in this case Tim Sale.
3. Mark Waid’s run on Daredevil
It’s hard to single out one particular story more than another because the whole arc is so intertwined but if I had to suggest where to begin I would recommend the first seven issues. It’s important to point out that this story takes place after the “ Shadowland” major event that turned Daredevil into a, kind of villain. It’s complicated.
The point is that the story takes place after that event and takes a totally different turn with the character that had not been seen in years. It changes the tone and allows the stories to be lighter and lets Matt Murdock actually be happy and it surprisingly works. Daredevil is such a streetwise gritty character that the proposition of such a thing seems very strange but it actually becomes a breath of fresh air. The reasoning for this is sound and you honestly don’t know how long Matt’s positive, can do attitude will hold up to the challenges he will face. The writing is excellent and the art is ambitious and very different for Daredevil.
2.The Man Without Fear – by Frank Miller & John Romita Jr.
Based on the early trailers for the show, it seems to have taken quite a bit from this particular story. It’s entirely an origin tale but one that focuses on the becoming of Daredevil. In fact Matt Murdock does not even appear in full costume until the last page of the story. It’s raw and noir in the style that only Frank Miller can provide. This is actually Frank’s third and final stint on with the character. The artwork from John Romita Jr. Is nice enough. I’m not a huge fan of his particular art style but the man can make action scenes extremely dynamic. It’s focus on Daredevil’s supporting cast is also worth mentioning. All the important characters are there and flushed out even more. The inter change between Daredevil and his Sensei, Stick are harsh at times but wonderfully entertaining.
1. Born Again. By Frank Miller & David Mazzuccchelli
Frank Miller’s finest hour on the character, in my books. The Born again story arc was actually Frank Miller’s second stint with the character since his famed first run. This time Miller decided to team up with his Batman: Year One artist, David Mazzuccchelli.
The results were fantastic. The collaboration allowed Miller to focus solely on the story and this allowed Mazzuccchelli to put out arguably his best artistic work. The story is dense and as dark as any of Miller’s Daredevil tales. I’d say this is the story that beats Matt Murdock down more than any other before it. You could argue that the death of Elektra was huge as well. However, this one had a betrayal that was so severe it nearly destroyed our titular character. Another huge point to mention is that this story is a particularly important game changer in the battle between Daredevil & Kingpin. Seek it out!
Honorable mentions goes to the work done by Ed Brubaker and Michael lark on their acclaimed run. I’m sure it’s good but I have yet to read it. Same goes for Brian Michael Bendis and Alex Maleev’s run.