Writer: Saladin Ahmed
Art: Aaron Kuder, Jesus Aburtov, VC’s Clayton Cowles, John Romita Jr., Scott Hanna, and Marcio Menyz
Publisher: Marvel Comics
Release Date: September 13th, 2023
BORN AGAIN! The new era of Daredevil starts here! Industry stars Saladin Ahmed and Aaron Kuder have laced up and entered the ring, ready to take Matt Murdock on a knockout of an adventure! Where does Elektra fit into all of this? What is the future of Hell’s Kitchen? Romance! Intrigue! And, of course, ACTION! All delivered in the Mighty Marvel Manner as Daredevil #1 kicks off!
Matt Murdock: The Priest. Yup. We get Matt as a Priest co-running a Foster House with another Father. Talk about an odd opening for Daredevil especially after the events from the last run. For those also unaware, Elektra is Daredevil now. Meanwhile, readers spend most of Daredevil #1 watching Matt discover who he is now while past memories flood in. The story kind of reminds me of when Bruce Wayne died and came back under Snyder’s run. We began not knowing how Matt came back and why just like Bruce in Snyder’s run. Eventually, by the end, Bruce figures some things out just like Matt does as this issue wraps up. It’s the same premise here.
By the end of Daredevil #1, Matt is back on track… for the most part. He doesn’t remember all the events from his stint in Hell. But, he remembers Elektra, key players, and decides to stick out his current job status as Father Matthew due to the fact that he was literally saved by God. I can’t blame him! Nevertheless, the oddity of this opening installment has a handful of weird statements that make the story hard to swallow. Now, this could simply be me overreacting, but for a guy who has just been saved from Hell, who’s also now a Father, and who also believes has been saved by God, why would he swear so much? I couldn’t even count how frequently the word “damn” was used. Moreover, why would his fellow Father join in and swear as well?
Additionally, as the story opens, we get this little joke about the taxi driver pulling over to pray. And Matt allows him to do so because he says “When God calls, you damn well better answer Him.” Well, if Matt is genuinely a Catholic Father, then he believes there is only one way to Heaven and wouldn’t be promoting someone from another religion to pray accordingly. He’d explain Jesus to him instead. Try to save him. So, on top of the cursing, it just seemed a bit off and uncharacteristic of not only Matt as a character but a Catholic Father as well. Moreover, how long has Matt been a Father? It’s a long process. So, is he legitimately a Priest or have documents been forged somehow? The point is that there are a ton of questions related to all of this because a Father who goes around at night as a vigilante is kind of unbiblical and really doesn’t make a ton of sense.
Daredevil #1 can best be described as a bit of a reach. It provides the same shock and oddity as Snyder’s Batman run did when Bruce Wayne was seen back again. And that was ultimately the hook this week. Readers will be left with a ton of questions. How did Matt come back? How did he become a Father and why? Who was this ghost that kind of looked like an old, rotting Matt Murdock? Who set all of this up? How long has he been back for? Ahmed gives fans many questions to consider as Daredevil #1 opens but it wasn’t really enough.
Nonetheless, I don’t know if it’s enough to completely hook me, especially with the odd, blatantly un-researched Catholic connection and misconceptions that would make this story not work under normal conditions. Nevertheless, I’m always all about giving the writer and creative team at least one arc to figure things out, especially when someone new takes over a series. That said, the leash is already a bit tight. Hopefully, we get answers quickly and move away from whatever this Priest angle is fast. Let me know what you think, have a great week, and God Bless!