Daredevil #23

by TylerM on February 21, 2013

Daredevil #23 is a great starting point for anyone curious about The Man Without Fear. It recounts his origin story, but in a way that isn't boring for people who know it, it has enough references to the past to appease the old readers without making them too vague for people just picking it up, and shows off the great friendship between Matt Murdock and Foggy Nelson, attorneys at law.


The only drawback this issue has as a jumping-on point, is that it doesn't do a great job at summing up Matt Murdock himself. Granted, that's difficult to do in one issue, and this one was already pressed for time, so it's easily forgivable.


Mark Waid did a great job on this script, as he has been doing for a while. There are a lot of emotions brought up in this issue, and he does a great job of making me feel all of them. Of course, with the help of artist Chris Samnee, who I'm really starting to love on this book. At first, I didn't think anyone could replace Paolo Rivera, but I don't want anyone replacing Samnee anytime soon.


Samnee's art is wonderful, and they way he illustrates things like Matt's radar sense, or the heartbeats he hears really draws you into the world from Matt's perspective. Samnee's art, while simplistic, somehow shows so much detail, in a way that makes me think of Darwyn Cooke. I've never seen faces filled with such subtle and varied emotions in one issue. With an artist like this, Waid can rely on him to show us how characters feel, so he doesn't have to tell us.


The biggest issue I have with the script is that the conflict goes away way too soon, and leaves a lot unresolved. It felt like this should have been a stand-alone issue about Foggy and Matt going through some things, but Waid felt like it needed to lead into something bigger. I feel that cheapens some of the moments in this issue, but I understand you can't really market an issue as a jumping-on point and leave them entirely satisfied with the ending.


I still felt the impact of those important scenes between Foggy and Matt though, even with the odd interlude in the middle, and that's the important thing. This issue doesn't pull any punches, and by the end you're going to have a better understanding of where Foggy and Matt are going to go with their lives and friendship.


More than anything, what Waid's Daredevil run has done for the character is show how important a best friend is for him. I don't think anything is more important to Matt Murdock's well-being than Foggy Nelson, and if that's what Waid has been trying to tell me, then message received.


Regardless of any flaws though, this issue could serve as a pivotal moment for the entire Daredevil mythos. If you like Daredevil at all, go get it. Shed a tear with the rest of us.

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