Volume 4, Issue 14!
“So You Just Binge Watched Daredevil, Now What?”
Marvel Studios’ Daredevil has finally hit Netflix, and by now, you’ve probably either started the series or already binged through every episode available to you. So what now? With no news on a season two just yet, you’ll have to sit tight until AKA Jessica Jones hits (or a few weeks until Age of Ultron releases). But if you’re still jonesing for more Daredevil, then you’re in luck, cause there’s plenty of fantastic stories featuring Matt Murdock just waiting for you. Of all of Marvel’s characters, Daredevil has arguably had some of the greatest runs, with some big names working on the character throughout his publishing history. But where to start? Luckily, all of the following Daredevil stories I’m listing to you are easily accessible, and awesome.
Daredevil by Mark Waid
While I may not be the biggest fan of Waid’s decision to move Matt Murdock back to San Francisco in the “All-New Marvel Now” relaunch of the book, I was enthralled by Mark Waid’s early adventures for the Man Without Fear. While many long time fans weren’t ecstatic seeing Matt Murdock smiling and being carefree, I really enjoyed it, and thought it made sense for Murdock. The guy is constantly getting crapped on in life; he should be allowed some happiness for once.
Waid’s run is filled to the brim with fun superhero action and gorgeous visuals from artists like Paolo Rivera, Mike Allred, and of course, Chris Samnee, who’s been a constant on the book since issue 12. Waid and Samnee’s high point for the series comes in the latter half of the series, but it’s a damn great introduction to the world of Matt Murdock.
Kevin Smith gets a lot of flack these days from comic book fans: Comic Book Men sucks, he’s never turned in a comic on time, and really, Batman pissed himself during Year One? However, his first Marvel Comics work is still one of my favorites, and relaunched the character into the top ten.
Guardian Devil finds Matt Murdock in the care of a child that may or may not be the second coming of Christ. Naturally, this brings a whole lot of freaks out to come for the child, including DD’s nemesis, Bullseye. Smith’s run on the character goes to some pretty weird places, but it all works by the issue’s end, and Joe Quesada and Jimmy Palmiotti’s art has never looked better than it has here. Plus, the ending will make your jaw drop.
Daredevil by Brian Michael Bendis
There are three creators who if you see their names associated with the word “Daredevil” in print, you absolutely need to read them. The other two will be coming up, but the first of those names is Brian Michael Bendis, who’s work on the character in the 2000’s was nothing short of extraordinary, even though Matt Murdock was at his most vulnerable.
Hounded by the press after his secret identity is sold to the tabloids, Matt Murdock is attacked at every possible avenue. He’s getting sued by former enemies, under fire from the police, and can’t even catch a break in his love life. But this is where Matt Murdock shines as a character. Bendis’ run is a master class in comic writing, and a modern classic that is neck and neck with…
Daredevil by Ed Brubaker
The second “must buy” name on the Daredevil writer list is Ed Brubaker, who did the impossible by not only following Brian Michael Bendis’ run and kept the quality, but at times, surpassed it. The shadow of Bendis loomed large over Daredevil, but Brubaker ably met the challenge and created a run that many, myself included, consider one of the best runs of all time.
From the opening storyline “The Devil In Cell Block D” to the jaw dropping final moments, Brubaker’s run with Michael Lark is, like Bendis before his, another example of just how badass Daredevil is. Brubaker’s run is filled with incredible moments, and even made a goofy villain like Mister Fear into an awesome threat, and one of my favorite villains of all time.
ANYTHING by Frank Miller
When you see the name “Frank Millar” your first thought is probably Batman. And that’s true, but at the same time, Miller has done awesome work with The Man Without Fear, and his runs of the character are absolute must-reads. From his storyline that introduced Elektra, to Born Again, to The Man Without Fear with John Romita Jr, Miller was the first to really get into Matt Murdock’s head and see what made him tick. Much of the Netflix show has been heavily inspired by the already mentioned miniseries with John Romita Jr, and it’s just as incredible as the first time I read it.
That’s not all there is for Daredevil. With a history dating back to the early days of the Lee/Kirby Marvel days, there’s a plethora of other stories to check out, like Jeph Loeb and Tim Sale’s Daredevil: Yellow, Ann Nocenti’s run on the character from the mid 80’s, the recent Shadowl-just kidding, Shadowland was garbage. But hopefully this list helps you get acquainted with Matt Murdock. If this is your first time diving into the world of Daredevil, I envy you. There’s nothing quite like it in comics.