Last friday the new TV series “Daredevil” started on Netflix. It’s the first production from the Marvel cinematic universe that I actually like. Why? It is dark, serious and has a great villain. “The Dark Knight” meets “Oldboy”.
Everbody waited for it and now it is finally here – the adaption of the comic book “Daredevil”. It tells the story of a blind lawyer by the name of Matt Murdock (Charlie Cox) who starts to fight crime in the area of “Hell’s Kitchen” in the city of New York. Before I watched the first episode I was worried that it would be handled like “The Flash” and “Gotham” where the background story of the hero is told way too fast and the problems in the further episodes are also solved too quickly. But my worries were uncalled-for. The writers took the adaption seriously – in the truest sense of the word.
In other Marvel productions like “The Avengers”, “Iron Man” or even “Guardians of the Galaxy” the only goal is to entertain and stop there. I guess because this is the way to sell the most tickets and the way the common folk likes it. But not me or any other true cinema fan I know. These kind of movies can be fun for a while but generally you want something different out of the superhero universe. This is where “Daredevil” comes in. It reminds me of the Batman movies of Christopher Nolan like “The Dark Knight”. The atmosphere of the city is very dark and the hero is a profound type of person. Like Batman Dardevil has no supernatural superpowers, only his senses are superhumanly enhanced. Because of this he is a more interesting and relatable character.
And, like batman, he had a serious training, not only physically but also with his mind, kind of like “Zatoichi”, the blind samurai. Which brings me to the most fascinating thing of the series. It shows fighting like an art. Especially one scene of the second episode had itself burned into my mind because it shows the cinematic style of South Korean movies like “Oldboy”. In the narrow space of a hallway you see Daredevil in a one-take fight and you see the motive for what he has trained for his whole life – saving a life without taking another.
And last but not least: The series also has a great villain. For example in “Guardian of the Galaxy” Ronan the Accuser practically does nothing but being evil. He is a very one-dimensional character and we never get a sense why he is doing what he is doing. “Daredevil” on the other hand shows that villains matter. First I was not sure if I like the actor Vincent D’Onofrio as Wilson Fisk. The first episodes you just here the name of the villain and build up these great expectations. Then, when you see him, he is that weak and shy appearance of a man. But soon you will figure out that this is the thing that makes him incredibly fascinating. Because he is unpredictable.
Generally the characters of the series were created so there is still a lot of room left for advancement. Everything is possible and the series could go on forever (and I hope it will).
But enough said. I guess the new Batman/Superman movie by Zack Snyder will be one of those “fun” movies again. First Ben Affleck screwed up Daredevil in the past and now he will probably do the same with Batman. Hopefully there will be another Charlie Cox in the future who will save the world of the superhero universe once again.