BORN AGAIN! The new era of Daredevil starts with a new Daredevil #1! Where does Elektra fit into all of this? What is the future of Hell’s Kitchen? Romance! Intrigue! And, of course, ACTION!
After the wild ride that was the previous run of Daredevil, writer Saladin Ahmed kicks off Daredevil #1 leaning somewhat hard into those events. A quick recap catches readers up, but even with that, the debut issue feels like those who haven’t been keeping up might be missing something. Still, the debut has its moments and concepts are interesting enough.
Ahmed’s Matt Murdock is a Priest running an orphanage that both the church and city want to shut down. But, a generous benefactor makes sure that doesn’t happen, keeping things running and him in the clear. But, Murdock’s past has still happened and he’s haunted by memories and dreams of his former life. It’s an interesting concept overall for the character but one that’s a little predictable in a way. Of course he’ll done the costume again at some point and regain his memories. It’s a question of how and when.
Where the comic gets intriguing is Murdock’s faith. He sees his actions as Daredevil and what haunts him as sinful and he’s doing his best to live a life free from all of that. The dive into Murdock’s Catholicism is something we’ve seen off and on throughout the years and while present here, it feels more surface level than anything deep. Still, it’s an interesting direction with potential.
Where the comic stumbles are some specifics that feel very “Punisher back as avenging angel.” It’s not explained but felt like a record scratch in an otherwise ok issue. How that particular aspect is used in the story as presented going forward will be interesting and at least gives Daredevil something to fight beyond ninjas and Kingpin.
The art by Aaron Kuder is good. Like the story itself, it’s entertaining enough and shows some really interesting moments and potential for future issues. With color by Jesus Aburtov and lettering by Clayton Cowles, the script keeps the action limited for the most part which at times allows the action to pop. Kuder channels Jim Steranko in one two page spread that shows what could be. The use of Matt’s radar too is limited but that might be more about the story and his fighting his past. What is shown shows off some potential there for the art to pop. While there’s some solid panels and pages, overall, the visuals like excitement.
Daredevil #1 feels reserved in many ways. It’s a slow start overall that has interesting concepts but not an interesting pitch of those concepts. It feels rather safe in some ways and a little bit of a throwback in others. After the wild, emotional driven ride, that was the previous volume, this one is a definite change in pace.
Story: Saladin Ahmed Art: Aaron Kuder
Color: Jesus Aburtov Letterer: Clayton Cowles
Story: 7.0 Art: 7.75 Overall: 7.0 Recommendation: Read
Marvel provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review