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Thursday, December 23, 2010

Comic Book Review: Daredevil - The Man Without Fear

Daredevil: The Man Without Fear
Writer: Frank Miller
Artist: John Romita Jr.
Published by Marvel Comics

Daredevil has been in the comics scene since the 1960's and his character has gone several revamps, but nothing truly captured the character's origin like Frank Miller's  Daredevil: The Man Without Fear released in 1993.

Collaborating with one of the greatest comic book artists of all time in John Romita Jr., this 5-issue mini series tells the whole story of one young Matt Murdock, of his life in  the dungy streets of New York City's Hell's Kitchen, and how he came about to be the man who dresses like a devil spawned from hell - who fights for justice and the oppressed.

The son of champion boxer "Battlin" Jack Murdock (who also works  for a mob boss known only as The Fixer), young Matt is just like any other kid in the neighborhood who gets bullied almost everyday by his peers. Until one fateful day, while trying to save a blind old man from being run over by a truck loaded with radioactive chemical drums, Matt Murdock accidentally became the victim with all the muck spilling all over him, rendering him sightless - but his remaining senses were heightened to near -superhuman levels.

A mysterious blind man named Stick shows up and decides to take Matt under his wing and hone his skills in order to take advantage of his new found abilities. But things we're not easy for Matt, and making it harder for him is an unfortunate event that would change his life forever.

Matt and Elektra's first time together
Matt's transformation into the hero he would become is a painfully slow process. But the story is more than just explaining the origin this superhero. Emotions were well shown and intricately examined all through out, and real aspects of society were also showcased such as organized crime and poverty. Themes of revenge, death and love are also imminent and proves to be a very important part of maintaining the drama that is necessary to make this a balanced, noir  kind of novel.

The Kingpin

And of course, we get to see Matt in his first adventure in "ninja" kind of suit before donning his iconic costume, thwarting an illegal mob operation but not without getting the attention of one New York crime boss, The Kingpin. Every good hero needs a good adversary and this is what the big bad mafia boss is adding up to the elements of an already good story.

There is nothing you won't like in this definitive work of art and literature by the team of Miller and Romita. Two of the greatest comic book personalities giving a dramatically stylized, well-illustrated, and fantastically written Daredevil origin while maintaining the realism that readers always want to see and feel.

I certainly enjoyed reading every bit of it right from the start. This is one Marvel classic that is definitely worth picking up.

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