Marvel’s Daredevil Review

Marvel’s Daredevil is a 2015 superhero action crime drama web television series created by Drew Goddard, starring Charlie Cox, Deborah Ann Will, Vincent D’Onofrio, Jon Bernthal, Rosario Dawson, Elden Henson, Elodie Yung, and Atelier Zurer.  The series follows the exploits Matt Murdock a blind lawyer-by-day who fights crime at night as the vigilante, Daredevil.


Positives:

  • Great performances by the cast
  • Great characters
  • Engaging storyline
  • Great score
  • Pretty memorable characters
  • Great choreography
  • Great use of practical effects
  • Talented cast

Negatives:

  • Pacing issues

Plot: The series follows the early days of Matt Murdock / Daredevil, a lawyer-by-day who fights crime at night, and comes into conflict with the rise of crime lord Wilson Fisk.  The road to Murdock’s vision is a long and hard one and it does come at a price.  Strained relationships with his friends, a failing business, and criminals who seek opportunity at every corner. Season follows Matt who is dealing with the mysterious organization known as the Hand while trying to track down the ruthless vigilante known as the Punisher. There are many compelling moments to the story including both the rise of Daredevil and the Kingpin, and how these two collide.  Both season one and season two come to an explosive climatic ending. (5 out of 5)

Characters: The series does feature some excellent characters, both good and bad.  The main protagonist is Matt Murdock who sets his sights on riding Hell’s Kitchen of the criminal element.  He is a likable character although his stubborn streak can make him frustrating at times.  However, his good intentions and perseverance does make him a great hero.  Helping him on his campaign either as his business partners or vigilante’s allies are Karen Page, Claire Temple, Foggy Nelson, Ben Urich, and Elektra Natchios. Like all heroes, he has to have a good villain and Fisk is a menacing figure, there’s no doubt about that, but he does have his vulnerable moments.  In social situations, he does come off as awkward and shy, but when he needs to he is just deadly, cunning, and manipulative.  On his side is Vanessa Fisk and James Wesley and both do a great job of balancing out Fisk while having their own moments, especially Wesley. (5 out of 5)

Cast:  Solid performances by the main and supporting cast.  Cox is a great choice as Murdock.  He’s young but does a great job of feeling grounded and giving the character edge.  D’Onofrio is freaking awesome as Fisk.  If there is one constant within the series, it’s the two sided coin that represents Cox and D’Onofrio not only just their characters but with their performances.  Elodie Yung is a perfect cast as Elektra as well as the Jon Bernthal as the Punisher (and quite frankly the best Punisher portrayal).  Other performances include Deborah Ann Woll, Rosario Dawson, Elden Henson, Ayelet Zurer, Bob Gunton, Toby Leonard Moore, Scott Glenn, Vondie Curtis-Hall, and Blake Tower. (5 out of 5)

Visuals: The first vigilante costume looks alright and works well for stealth. The design might not be the most tactical but as far as plausible it works. The actual Daredevil outfit has a more tactical look with the lightweight armor. The fight sequences are actually pretty brutal and the choreography is fantastic. The impacts look like they have weight and don’t follow the typical superhero troupe of knocking bad guys out with one punch. (4 out of 5)

Score:  The musical theme by John Paesano and Braden Kimball is pretty epic and definitely sets a great tone for the show.  The score is absolutely brilliant. (4 out of 5)

Writing:  The writing is good and definitely takes its time establishing itself with great characters and an active setting.  It is set in the Marvel Cinematic Universe but doesn’t revolve around it, forging its own mark.  The characters are extremely well written.  The dialogue is fair and feels authentic.  The action sequences are handled with care and aren’t over-the-top.  Two very important scenes in the series come from the shots of certain characters excepting their destinies; Daredevil and Kingpin at the end of season 1 as well as Punisher at the end of season 2. (4 out of 5)


The Verdict:  In the end, Marvel’s Daredevil is a fantastic superhero show that definitely does the character justice.  Not only does the show tell a compelling story with a lot of complex angles, but there are some really memorable characters, great performances by a fantastic cast, great action, and a good soundtrack. Charlie Cox was made for the role of Daredevil.  Marvel’s Daredevil gets 5 out of 5.

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