By: Marin Dremock
Don’t be mad. I’m reviewing two-thirds of a Marvel TV show. But this isn’t any basic Marvel TV show, and it most definitely isn’t a current multiverse installation. I’m reviewing and strongly recommending “Daredevil,” an unconventional Marvel show that ran from 2015–2018.
The show follows Matt Murdock, a blind lawyer with exceptional “sixth sense” abilities, and his friends in the Hell’s Kitchen neighborhood of New York City. In a sort of Batman-esque way, the character lives one life as lawyer Matt Murdock and another as Daredevil, a vigilante crime-fighter who doesn’t want to see his city suffer.
This Marvel show is one of the most unique creations I’ve seen the comic-book company put on the screen. The character development, real-world implications and gruesome depictions make “Daredevil” unlike the run-of-the-mill Marvel superhero show.
Even though I have only seen the first two seasons, I am confident in basing my review of the show thus far on the portion I have seen.
I must begin with the character of Matt Murdock himself. He has a pretty generic origin: a tragic backstory that leads to proficiencies in other senses/powers. Involved in a car accident, a young Murdock is completely blinded by toxic acid. His father passes away, and he is put in an orphanage, where he is then sought out by Stick, a blind martial arts master. Young Murdock learns how to fight from Stick, thus developing an exceptional proficiency in his other senses.
But Matt is complicated. As he grows older, he experiences tragedy, college, heartbreak and violence because of his chosen life as Daredevil. Matt doesn’t make the best choices. He sacrifices friendships, relationships and civilian life to live his vigilante life.
Yes; it seems like all superheroes do this. But because of how involved Matt’s friends are with both of his lives, as a lawyer and Daredevil, his choices affect them directly. Although I hate the conflict between Matt and his friends and the questionable relationship he chooses to have, I love the show as a whole because of it.
A lot of Marvel TV shows take place in the real world, but otherworldly things usually take over. This eventually happens in “Daredevil”, but for the first one and a half seasons or so, the show is so grounded in real life Hell’s Kitchen, New York City.
As a lawyer, Matt defends real clients affected by large financial crime schemes and finds out more that is under the surface of some of these crimes. As Daredevil, he enacts vigilante justice on some of these same clients because there is something more dangerous going on in Hell’s Kitchen.
This contrast makes the show appealing to me; someone who knows the law by heart because of his occupation still feels the need to take it into his own hands as a vigilante. It seems like a genuine concern; the law is not enough to stop all the bad things in the world from happening. If lawyer Matt Murdock can see fault in the law, indeed we all should.
A word of caution for the faint of heart or stomach; the show gets graphic. It was unexpected, especially for Marvel. However, the grit, blood and gore that is depicted make the show’s messages sink in. It was a risky choice for Marvel, for sure, but a purposeful one.
I definitely recommend “Daredevil” to anyone looking for an unconventional Marvel watch that will wholly grab their attention.