Daredevil – Season 1 (2015)

Daredevil – Season 1 (2015)

created by Drew Goddard

based on the Daredevil comic books by Stan Lee and Bill Everett

written by Drew Goddard, Marco Ramirez, Joe Pokaski, Luke Kalteux, Douglas Petrie, Steven S. DeKnight, Christos Gage, and Ruth Fletcher Gage

directed by Phil Abraham, Adam Kane, Ken Girotti, Farren Blackburn, Guy Ferland, Brad Turner, Stephen Surjik, Nelson McCormick, Nick Gomez, Euros Lyn, and Steven S. DeKnight

Sometimes you like a movie that everyone else hates with a passion. Such is the case with Daredevil (2003), which I found quite entertaining twelve years ago even though my friends classify it as utter garbage. I’m pretty sure my peeps are right, so I’ll have to revisit it sometime. In any case, I had heard that Netflix’s new series about Marvel’s superhero was a “must-see,” so I gave it a shot.


I’m particularly difficult when it comes to comic book stuff. Too silly and over the top and I’m out – think Guardians of the Galaxy (2014). Too serious and bombastic, I’m out – think Man of Steel (2013). Strike the right balance, such as with most of the X-Men franchise, Captain America: The Winter Soldier (2014), or Joss Whedon’s take on The Avengers (2012-2015), and I’m all in. Daredevil is lukewarm at best. It’s basically an origin story about how a righteous blind lawyer named Matt Murdock (Charlie Cox) becomes Batman, um, I mean, a masked vigilante. But in general I felt its overall tone was too somber and ponderous – there’s only so many discussions about city corruption or guilt-ridden confession scenes inside a church I can take. It also suffers from weak dialogue and even weaker acting, something that starts to stand out after a few episodes.

VINCENT D'ONOFRIO as WILSON FISK in the Netflix Original Series “Marvel’s Daredevil” Photo: Barry Wetcher © 2014 Netflix, Inc. All rights reserved.

Then again there’s some good stuff, such as nifty action choreography and a couple of character deaths I didn’t see coming. Plus there’s Vincent D’Onofrio as top villain Wilson Fisk, a tightly wound ball of anger whose imposing physique and violent unpredictability makes for a terrifying foe. D’Onofrio imbues his performance with an emotionally vulnerable edge which is a treat to watch.

So this Daredevil is a mixed bag. Fast forward to the action sequences and any scene with D’Onofrio, and definitely check out episode seven, Stick, with Scott Glenn playing the blind sensei that trains Matt as a child. Had the whole series been as exciting as that hour, I would’ve definitely been on board for the next season. But as it stands, I think I’ll wait until Elektra shows up.

Rating: **

Carlos I. Cuevas

2 replies »

  1. Roger Ebert would be so proud of you (regarding the being difficult part) 😉

    For us mere mortals this series is nothing short of excellent. Frank Miller in particular must be proud since the whole ambience, style and (dare I use the word) “gritiness” practically reeks (in a good way) of his work on the Daredevil comic book.

    This is “serious, somber and grim” done right. Done because the story demands it, not done because desaturated, unnecessrily gloomy hero stuff is “in”.

    So I’ve been highly recommending this to anyone withing hearing distance and I anxiously await the second season of this very well done comic book to tv series adaptation.


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