Daredevil #1 (Marvel Worldwide)
by Mark Waid, Fred van Lente, Paolo Rivera, Marcos Martin & Joe Rivera
I have to admit I was surprised that Marvel opted to get Daredevil back in the game so quickly, but any chance to get a new Mark Waid-penned comic every month is one I welcome. Waid takes the character in a new direction, focusing on a brighter, more traditional approach to the title character that’s in keeping with his early, Silver Age adventures. On the other hand, he doesn’t ignore what’s come before. The dark, difficult elements from the Bendis, Brubaker and Diggle runs on the character in recent years are acknowledged here. Waid wisely doesn’t ignore what’s come before. In fact, the backup story focuses specifically on the shift in tone within the context of the character, hinting that not all is as bright and shiny as Matt Murdock purports it to be. That made for an impressive bit of character-driven writing. The main story offers up some fun super-hero action, but more importantly, it demonstrates that Daerdevil’s biggest conflict these days is dealing with the public’s knowledge that he’s lawyer Matt Murdock (even though it’s no longer a proven fact in the public eye). My only qualm with the comic is something I normally applaud: accessibility. While it’s important to give the reader everything s/he needs to understand the character and follow the story, information about Daredevil’s origin is offered up repeatedly here. The first page (penned by Fred van Lente, for some reason, and illustrated beautifully by Marcos Martin) recaps his origin, but Waid’s script offers some of the same information on the very next page, making for an irksome redundancy. Still, it’s a minor flaw in an otherwise well-crafted comic book.