‘Daredevil’ claims Marvel’s stake on Netflix

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‘Daredevil’ claims Marvel’s stake on Netflix

By Jacob Pierce| @JacobPierce1_DE|Daily Egyptian

This review contains spoilers for Netflix’s new series “Daredevil.”

Mark Steven Johnson’s 2003 film, “Daredevil” was hot garbage. The film came from a time when the superhero genre was in its early stages.  It was not the worst film from this era, but the movie still left a dark mark on the vigilante’s history.

“Daredevil,” a new Netflix series by Steven S. DeKnight, adapts the character and his world magnificently while adding a level of realism similar to that of “The Wire.”

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Matthew Murdock, played by Charlie Cox, tragically loves Hell’s Kitchen, N.Y., the city he was born and raised in. Murdock loses 100 percent of his eyesight at a young age after chemicals spill into his eyes — but it gives him superhuman senses.

Now an adult, he is a practicing lawyer opening up a partnership with best friend Foggy Nelson, played by Elden Henson. At night he becomes a masked vigilante, fighting New York’s various crime.

To save his city, Murdock must take down The Kingpin, played by Vincent D’Onofrio, a man of vast wealth and power.

This series is wonderful. “Daredevil” not only does the comic justice, but it also serves as a brilliant crime drama. The characters are compelling, but flawed and it showcases a villain both relatable and vile.   

From top to bottom, it opens up important doors for the Marvel Cinematic Universe. It is more important than “The Avengers” or even “Iron Man.” The show supplies a place for lesser-known heroes to adapt.

One key way the show does this is with its amazing fight choreography. Assuming most are unfamiliar with the comic, Daredevil basically combines the styles of a boxer and a ninja.

Seeing the property take so much time to get a small detail right makes the entire show better. The fantastic fighting makes it more likely a character like Iron Fist, a persona based around a specific combat style, will be portrayed well.

The fight choreography is not only amazing, it borderlines as the best in TV history. “Daredevil” exceeds every other action show in existence. The fight scenes are cool, and tell a story on their own.

“Daredevil” showcases a cast of brilliant talent. Some of the actors are inexperienced and others are seasoned veterans. Regardless, the entire cast makes this ensemble work.

The two main examples are Cox and D’Onofrio, each bringing a unique performance to characters with a lot of lore.

Cox personifies Murdock. Watching the actor say inside jokes to Nelson, or start to fall for Karen Page, played by Deborah Ann Woll, is almost like watching the comic come to life.  

D’Onofrio on the other hand, plays Wilson Fisk (The Kingpin) a little differently than the comic portrays him. In the comics, the character is cool and collective, a gangster of the highest sort. This Fisk is childish and looking to save the city by any means.

The actor shows signs of confidence and the trademark toughness that helps the character fight the likes of Spider-Man. But, all of these traits are building blocks, dynamics Fisk will grow into and we will love watching it happen.

“Daredevil” has few problems. The first episode has rough spots, but what series does not have a rocky pilot? The glaring hole in the ship is the season’s ending.

While it is not a huge deal, the show seems to cash in way too early. The season ends with Daredevil taking down Kingpin and the villain going to jail, Fisk’s entire kingdom falling to his knees.

Daredevil’s victory is satisfying, but it would have been more fulfilling if it happened in the third season or so. Build all the evil deeds Kingpin has done until you have the climax of the superhero taking him down.

It is not a huge problem. The season still works, and it is great to see Kingpin get what is coming to him. But overall it is clear the show is working toward something bigger. The ending is supposed to be a finish to the story, just in case Marvel decides to not do another season.

It quenches, but it could be so much more.

Stars: 4.5 out 5

Jacob Pierce can be reached at [email protected] or at 536-3311. 

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