Posted October 15, 2014 by Stephen Hardman in Comics

Comic of the Week – 15.10.14 – Daredevil #9

ART BY: Chris Samnee
COVER BY: Chris Samnee and Matthew Wilson
PUBLISHER: Marvel Comics
RELEASE DATE: 15th October 2014

Mark Waid and Chris Samnee continue the adventures of Matt Murdock in San Francisco this month in another brilliant comic book. Following the sinister introduction of Killgrave’s children in last month’s issue they become the protagonists of issue #9.

Spoilers ahead!

The cover of this month’s issue is as great as ever, but develops much more meaning once you have read the story inside. Killgrave’s children literally push Matt over the edge by making him believe that he is not strong enough to deal with all the pain, anger, loneliness and despair that fills his life. Earlier in the issue he tries to convince Foggy that writing an autobiography would not be an issue and he would be able to handle the “emotional churn”. Faced with the primal blast of the children’s emotions Matt is convinced that in fact he is not strong enough to deal with the turmoil of his past and his current life. The final panel with Daredevil in the foetal position, and the Purple Man standing over him, having earlier walked out of the morgue, is stunning and full of menace.

The narrative is handled expertly by Waid and Samnee. The book opens with the children walking down the middle of a street. They look a little sinister but there doesn’t seem to be much happening. Over the page however we see people writhing in despair, the children leaving emotional destruction in their wake. This is the first inkling that Killgrave’s children may have much more powerful abilities than he has.

The story then switches to our hero on his way to breakfast with Foggy and Kirsten, the three of them discussing the book deal Kirsten’s father has offered Matt. The interaction between these three friends is funny and believable. But it’s not long before the calm is broken when Matt hears a commotion in the distance. As Daredevil he leaves the restaurant and confronts the children, who have stolen a police car and are currently out of control driving through the streets. Daredevil manages to stop the car in a fantastically rendered sequence by Samnee. He has no idea what the children are capable of however, and soon they turn a crowd of bystanders and the police against him. Matt tries to escape the crowd but the children follow him to a bridge and mercilessly throw him over the side, his defences nulled by their mind control.

Waid is exploring the question of what would happen if children had the same powers as the Purple Man? The answer is that they will cause mayhem and destruction doing whatever they can because no-one is able to stop them. Even, it seems, Daredevil.

Daredevil continues to be one of the best super-hero comic books on the shelves, and one of the best books Marvel is currently producing. The collaboration of Waid and Samnee is remarkable and every issue has the feel of a modern-day classic. I also like the fact that Daredevil feels set apart from the main Marvel Universe. He’s always been a character on the fringes but this current comic just feels different, somehow special.

Mark Waid’s Daredevil has been our Comic of the Week on several occasions now and this week he and Samnee have pulled off another excellent instalment of an excellent series. Long may it continue.

Born in the North West of England and now living in North Somerset his interest in comics started at an early age by reading the cartoons in weekend newspapers – a particular favourite being Calvin & Hobbes. His interest grew when he discovered the only comic shop in his home-town, which led him to Vertigo, the early incarnation of Image, as well as Batman, a character which remains a favourite to this day. He also loves crime and noir fiction, film and TV of all kinds, and music of all types. Writing and blogging takes up much of his spare time and he hopes to one day publish his long-gestating crime novel.