Marvel's Daredevil

 

Netflix

 

Starring: Charlie Cox, Elden Henson

 

Genre: Superhero / Crime

 

Best for: Mature teens and adults

 

Rating: TV-MA

 

Starring: Pilot

 

Genre: A blind lawyer seeks justice in the courtroom by day, while acting as a vigilante superhero by night.

 

The Review:

 

After making comic books and creating super-heroes for children to enjoy for over 50 years, Marvel has taken their creativity to the movies (Ironman, Capt. America, The Avengers), as well as on TV (The Flash, Marvel's Agent's of SHIELD, The Arrow), and now they have teamed up with Netflix to bring another superhero to the small screen: Daredevil.

 

Daredevil is the story of Matt Murdock (Charlie Cox), a newly graduated lawyer attempting to establish a law firm with his friend, Foggy Nelson (Elden Henson). Blinded as a child, Matt could assume the assumed role of a vulnerable sightless man, yet Matt is anything other than defenseless. Not only have his other senses been heightened, as one might expect, but upon watching we realize that his sense of hearing is unnaturally sensitive. So much so, he can hear the ticking of a watch across the courtroom floor or the quickening heartbeat of someone who's frightened. Additionally, he has some mad fighting skills that just don't let up.

 

In the pilot episode, we are not only introduced to Matt and Foggy, but given some background into Matt and his relationship with his father, boxer Jack Murdock (John Patrick Hayden). We also meet the first client of Nelson and Murdock, a young woman, Karen (Deborah Ann Woll), who has been accused of murder. Pursuing the art of ambulance chasing, Matt and Foggy find Karen locked up at the local police station. After hearing her story, and realizing that all the pieces don't make a complete puzzle, Matt and Foggy take her case. While Foggy pursues the legal aspects of defense, Matt puts on his makeshift mask and begins roaming the streets, defending Karen against her enemies.

 

Interestingly, the series begins with Matt at confession, asking forgiveness for "what I'm about to do" (which is hurt a lot of people in order to save others). I found it unusual that Matt feels he has the devil inside, when what he wants is to do is good by saving people. The violence he turns to isn't "saintly," but the desire to overcome evil and help the helpless isn't from the devil either.

 

What makes this Marvel production different from others to this point is the violence. Gruesome at times, the violence in Daredevil is hard hitting and relentless. It certainly earns the MA rating for this alone. Possibly in an effort to throw in some balance, comic relief is attempted via the character of Foggy, but he's overplayed and falls flat. So, while Charlie Cox is fantastic as Matt/Daredevil, and his character is well-developed and interesting, Foggy ends up being an uncomfortable distraction. The violence coupled with bad acting, makes it difficult to watch.

 

This is one Marvel production I won't be sharing with my tween boys, despite its compelling premise of a blind man fighting crime. The violence alone is a bit much, and the questionable acting will keep me from watching further too. This is too bad, because the plotline is actually pretty interesting and is something I would normally want to watch. I guess Marvel isn't as impervious to failure as I'd imagined.

 

After the Show:

 

Use these questions to spark discussion among family members who are interested in this movie:

 

• How do you think the comment made by Matt's grandmother about the Murdock boys having "the devil inside" effects the way he views himself?

 

• The Bible says, "Do not take revenge, my dear friends, but leave room for God's wrath, for it is written: 'It is mine to avenge; I will repay,' says the Lord '"(Romans 12:9). How do vigilante's, like Daredevil, fit into this truth?

 

• If you could choose anyone to play Foggy, who would you choose?

 

--JW

 

Tags: Daredevil,Marvel,Comics,Matt Murdock,Charlie Cox,Foggy Nelson, Elden Henson,Avengers,Stan Lee

 

Note: All product-related graphics in this article are standard publicity/promotional shots and are owned by their respective publisher.

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