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Daredevil #1

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by Charles Soule, Ron Garney and Matt Milla

Call it skepticism, call it hesitation, call it whatever you like, but it’s hard to put a finger on this new volume of Daredevil. The last run on Daredevil–technically two volumes–was something that is so rare in comics you can probably count on one hand the amount of times it happened (pun not intended here, sorry. Read this, and you’ll get it). Charles Soule is superb, Ron Garney and Matt Milla are an excellent art team, but the whole package feels like it’s off. Like something is missing and it’s a feel that’s hard to shake.

Charles Soule, as mentioned, is great. He’s a fantastic writer with a great list of books to his name and he used to be a lawyer, so it’s almost a no-brainer to have him on this title. It’s also a no-brainer to have a Daredevil book simply based on the popularity of the Netflix show–not that a lot of viewers are picking up comics, but we can dream. This version of Daredevil seems to line up more with the dark and grit of that show and it’s an unfortunate thing because there’s more than enough grit to pick out of your teeth every Wednesday to last a lifetime. Mark Waid and Chris Samnee showed that Daredevil doesn’t have to necessarily be this way, regardless of past volumes or preconceived notions of the character. They made Daredevil fun and interesting and, frankly, more accessible to the average fan than ever before.

It’s not fair, really, to compare the two volumes because Soule is out to do his own thing and that was pre-Secret Wars and we’re all living in a very different Marvel Universe these days, but it can’t be helped. It feels like maybe Marvel should have held onto old Hornhead to let the hype around the last volume fade a little bit more because, sorry guys, it’s hard to get that out of your head when reading this new one.

The art is different for Marvel, for sure, and that’s a good thing. It’s interesting, striking and cleverly colored in a sort of minimalist fashion. Really, it looks great and both Ron Garney and Matt Milla should be super proud of the work they’ve done here, especially if they can keep it up on a consistent basis. But along with the writing and direction, it just feels like such a drastic change it’s almost jarring. But let’s not get into that rant again. If nothing else, check this volume out for the art because it’s definitely something newer and it’s undeniably interesting.

Okay, look, apologies all around. This Daredevil is out too soon after the last, spectacular run; it’s hard to get immediately excited about it and it’s difficult to really care about this new sidekick person that seems to be under the proverbial wing of Daredevil. There’s just a lot of change here, and it’s scary. The second issue, or so, is worth checking out, for sure, and this was still a good issue of course, but man is it hard to get your head around this new direction. No more beating a dead horse here, but if you pick this up, try to go in with a fresh set of eyes and try to forget what came before it. Maybe you’ll enjoy it more.

Daredevil #1

Daredevil #1

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