This article comes from Den of Geek UK.
This Daredevil review contains spoilers. We have a spoiler-free review right here if you prefer.
Daredevil Season 3 Episode 1
Daredevil has always been the most reliable entry to Marvel’s Netflix output, and having taken a year out to offer its slot up to The Defenders, we are – if anything – clamoring for Matt Murdock more than ever.
Of course, The Defenders made major changes to Matt’s status quo. Both Matt Murdock and Elektra were buried beneath a destroyed skyscraper at Midland Circle – and although a post-credits scene revealed that Matt had survived, those closest to him have no idea.
So it is here that we enter Daredevil season 3. There’s no time wasted on the mystery of how Matt survived, and while Elektra’s absence is acknowledged that specific loss doesn’t inform everything about the show. This is Matt Murdock at a low ebb, having seemingly lost his abilities and with them, his will to live. Matt has never been the most cheerful of superheroes, but here he’s consumed with depression and self-loathing about his situation – and he blames God.
The use of Sister Maggie is a nice touch (comics fans may know something interesting about her, though I wouldn’t want to comment for fear of spoiling anything) and it makes sense that, in his time of need, Matt would return to the orphanage where he grew up. It’s like he’s being born again (Hmm.)
Although it was intriguing to see Matt dealing with being powerless, I’m glad it didn’t drag on too long. One of the problem with the Marvel-Netflix shows is that they seem to forget what’s fun for the viewers, and seeing Matt powerless for an extended period would have been the opposite of fun. Instead, we see him capable but shaken, and immediately making the kind of mistakes we tune in to see.
However, as good as Matt’s story is, the Kingpin’s return is the thing that we’re all excited about, right? Fisk in prison is played brilliantly, and D’Onofrio’s performance is as gripping as ever. After being relegated to a cameo in season two, it’s great to think that we’re going to be spending time with the guy again.
Meanwhile, Foggy and Karen don’t get a lot to do in this episode, but it’s good to check in with them and get a little background on how life has been since Matt “died”.
That said, it’s a new character, Ray Nadeem (Jay Ali), who gets the most to do here with an extended introduction that left me wondering if I’d somehow accidentally switched TV shows for a while. That said, it seems clear what they’re doing: setting Ray up as a good guy with some pressures that a guy like Wilson Fisk would be well-placed to relieve. The fact that he isn’t a character from the comics also means we can only wonder which way he’ll go.
In any case, this is an incredibly strong way to kick off the season, letting us get back inside Matt’s head and showing us what’s motivating those around him. I, personally, love Foggy and Karen and am incredibly glad to see more of them, but there’s no denying it’s the Kingpin and Matt who are running the show, and I suspect Ray’s going to be caught between them both. We’ll see…
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