It’s a new era of Daredevil, and Matt Murdock is now a priest! Find out what happened after his death with a new creative team in Daredevil #1 by Marvel Comics!
Writer: Saladin Ahmed
Artist: Aaron Kuder
Colorist: Jesus Aburtov
Letterer: Clayton Cowles
Editor: Devin Lewis
Publisher: Marvel Comics
Cover Price: $6.99
Release Date: September 13th, 2023
Previously in Daredevil: Matt Murdock lost his sight as a kid but gained heightened senses and a 360-degree radar sense. For years, he used his ability to fight as Daredevil. Recently, he died to save the souls of his friends trapped in hell but returned to life with no memory of his past adventures. Elektra wears the mantle of Daredevil, but it is only a matter of time before Matt Murdock is born again.
Daredevil #1 shows a glimpse of Matt Murdock’s life as a priest. He works in a youth home in Hell’s Kitchen and learns that a mysterious benefactor is helping him keep the doors open. Meanwhile, Elektra is watching Matt from a distance and is the one footing the bill to keep Matt’s youth home alive. However, she is attacked by a ghostly figure who takes control of her body. Elektra tries to kill Daredevil, but instinct takes over, and Daredevil dodges blows before Elektra retreats. Matt then dons a cloth over his eyes, heads to the New York rooftops, and impulsively finds Elektra’s apartment. During round 2 with ghost-possessed Elektra, he realizes this is a demon and performs an exorcism. Matt admits to Elektra that he is regaining his memories but is a priest with a duty to the kids. However, despite his duties, he dons the costume again.
When I first read this issue, I didn’t like it. Daredevil #1 seems a little out of touch, and I wasn’t feeling many of the layout design decisions or the story implications. After about a week, I sat down to reread the story and realized there was more nuance than I expected. I usually want my Daredevil to be a lawyer and a bachelor, and my initial disdain was because this comic isn’t that. If I take away that subconscious desire and look strictly at the narrative arc and this book’s promises, then I think we have a better story.
Thematically, we look at perseverance, morality, and some version of faith and Catholic guilt. I look forward to exploring the question of how God can be good amid a complicated and broken world and the duality of wearing a devil outfit as a man of faith. While I miss the older versions of Daredevil, this story has a lot of promise, and this specific issue sets up many questions that deserve an answer.
Daredevil #1 has solid character design and is visually attractive. Elektra looks great in her Daredevil outfit, and the coloring is excellent. Despite some layout design concerns, this book has good art and solid writing and deserves a solid 4 out of 5. I’ll be interested to see what they do with the character in the future.