Posted Jan 6, 2010 in Arts | 2 Comments

The COMICS Pimp – Daredevil

Born Again

As a kid, I devoured comics like candy. By the time puberty hit, they’d become something better left to childhood. I was slowly becoming a man, and men don’t read comics, do they?

So what brought me back? It was one man, or should I say one character, that rekindled my love. Matt Murdock is his name, and he dons a blood-red bodysuit with horns, battling the city’s demons as a devil – Daredevil. Forget what you know about the horrid movie starring Ben Affleck. One Daredevil tale superbly demonstrates the storytelling power of comics, and it’s what got me hooked.

In Born Again, comics legend Frank Miller, and frequent partner in crime David Mazzucchelli, plot the destruction and reconstruction of Matt Murdock. Wasting no time, in the opening page, Karen Page, an ex-girlfriend turned adult-film star and junkie, betrays Matt. She reveals a secret that reaches the ears of Daredevil’s nemesis, the Kingpin – a man as large as his vast criminal empire. The Kingpin uses this information to crush Matt Murdock financially and professionally. We’re left to wonder if Daredevil will also lose his spirituality and his life.

Daredevil Born Again

Using crisp words to match Mazzucchelli’s sparse, precise lines, Miller declares war on Daredevil. The battle between Daredevil and his archenemy forces Matt to question his faith and confront his past.

It’s no coincidence that this story was told in the eighties, the decade of greed. The Kingpin represents everything that is wrong with America, the fat, ugly compulsion with materialism, while Daredevil becomes its lean antithesis. Karen Page, the ex-girlfriend, falls into a pit of drugs and sex. She is stuck in the middle of a hazy, soulless world. Can she find salvation? Miller and Mazzucchelli ask the same thing of us.

Yes, when comics are this good, men do read comics. Born Again, published by Marvel Comics, is the defining Daredevil story. It is available in hardcover and trade paperback editions, and it is highly recommended by this comics pimp.

Dardevil Depressed

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  1. As a regular reader of Daredevil, I couldn’t agree more with you. Thank you for sharing.

  2. No problem. Thanks for taking the time to read the column.

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