Daredevil, Elektra sizzle under Soule’s and Buffagni’s direction

DD Elektra

I never thought a modern Daredevil writer would make me bust into cheesy clichés, but here it is: It’s hot in Hell Kitchen under Charles Soules’ and Matteo Buffagni’s direction! Heck, kudos to color artist Matt Milla as well. Daredevil #6 kicks off “Elektric Connection” and the return of Elektra. The entire issue crackles with sexual tension, fisticuffs, and one very broken arm (sorry, Blindspot).

Here is what readers need to know: Soule keeps it simple and sweet:

  • Daredevil’s secret identity has been restored and no-one is the wiser — including Elektra.
  • The famous assassin shows up at a New York City bond hearing as Murdock is trying to work. She knows he has a connection to Daredevil and wants a meeting ASAP.
  • The “meeting” (or rather, beating) commences in short order.
  • Elektra wants to know what Daredevil has done with her daughter, and vows to “cut away every lie” in his body if he doesn’t give her answers.

Perhaps the best way to describe Soules’ writing is “efficient.” Words are not wasted. Each word means something. Each sentence is important. There is a plan. Both he and Buffagni know exactly what they need to do. They execute their respective jobs to the hilt. It is a welcome reprieve after digesting Marvel fare like The Amazing Spider-Man # 11.

Murdoch Elektra date

In one brief interaction between Matt Murdock and Elektra at a “lawyer bar,” one can see why Daredevil is one of the strongest titles on the market at the moment. In addition to Buffagni’s gorgeous art, it is obvious that Mr. Soule is a man who has had complex, mature relationships with the fairer sex.

Take, for instance, Murdock’s decision to meet with Elektra for a drink after she shows up at a bond hearing. His head is separated into an upper and lower half by Buffagni’s panels. Yes, he is “split” between being Daredevil and a New York City prosecutor, but he also spars between his logical  self and his bodily passions. Matt does not want to tell Elektra where Daredevil is, but he also would really like to sleep with her again.

Needless to say, our Catholic superhero will have some explaining to do in the confession booth on Sunday. Murdock sets up a meeting between Daredevil and Elektra, and things get ugly fast. At one point Blindspot shows up and within seconds his arm is broken and he is off to see Night Nurse. Murdock finally has enough pussyfooting around and channels his inner Michael Keaton as Batman (i.e., “You wanna get nuts? Let’s get nuts!”).

Daredevil Elektra fight

The issue ends, as mentioned earlier, with Elektra demanding to know the location of her daughter. Whatever Daredevil did to essentially mind-wipe the world of his secret identity has a great upside, but it also appears as though it will come with painful consequences.

If you’re looking for a top-notch Marvel book, then go with Daredevil. The protector of Hell’s Kitchen has not been this cool in a long time.

Bonus: Michael Keaton getting “nuts” as Bruce Wayne never gets old.

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Charles Soule’s Daredevil: ‘The man without fear’ done right

Daredevil 5

Marvel is a strange company. On any given week readers might find themselves subjected to something as cringeworthy as The Amazing Spider-Man 1.4, or as spectacular as writer Charles Soule’s Daredevil. Your friendly neighborhood blogger is late to Soule’s ballgame, but it appears as though he and artist Ron Garney are in the middle of something truly special.

Blindspot

For those who haven’t purchased issues 1-4 of Daredevil, the story goes something like this:

  • Matt Murdock is now a New York City prosecutor (it’s about time!).
  • A Chinese illegal immigrant named Samuel Chung has become Daredevil’s protege.
  • A criminal named Tenfingers split from The Hand, stole some mystical power on his way out the door, and started his own cult.
  • The Hand sent a zombie-like being known as The Fist to exact revenge.
  • Tenfingers orders the assassination of everyone inside his church because they are witnesses to his failure. He cannot be seen as a savior if there is evidence of a setback.
  • Chung’s mom works for Tenfingers.

DD Blindspot

I haven’t followed Daredevil in years, but it appears as though the last time the book looked this cool — coupled with solid writing — was the 1980s. I tried to get into Daredevil on and off over the years, but this is the first time the title appears to have that “pop” that the defender of Hell’s Kitchen deserves.

If Mr. Soule doesn’t get too weirdly political with Chung’s immigration status, then I can certainly envision myself investing in this title for the long haul. Well done, Messrs. Soule and Garney.