As we’re gearing up for the line wide shake up that is Secret Wars, we have to come to terms with the loss of some great titles. While I’m sure Daredevil will be returning after the event, we already know that the sensational team of Mark Waid and Chris Samnee will not be, and for this Daredevil fan, it’s a swift kick in the teeth.
This latest issue continues the greatness Waid and Samnee have been telling, having everything start to come to a head with Matt and company. I don’t want to spoil any of the specific character details, as one of the major characters in this issue has a pretty significant reveal at the start of this run, but we get even more twists here. Also, we are introduced to a new Owl, coming from a familiar background, with a cool character design from Samnee. The biggest talking point about this issue, however, has to do with a change in Matt Murdock, inside and out. Spoilers!! (kinda?) ahead.
This issue introduces a new look for Matt. As he decides he no longer needs the mask, since he doesn’t hide his identity anymore, he more or less fights crime in a new get up. This costume is now a three piece suit, all red with a black shirt and a large DD belt buckle. Alright, To say I’m not a fan of this would be an understatement. In no way will it deter me from reading the book, but I personally do not like the new look. There’s always a bit of give you have to have with new costumes, obviously it won’t feel like that character off the bat, but the buzz cut and belt buckle distract me everytime I see it. Since Samnee is on art duties, I can just marvel at everything else on the page, but hopefully this is either not a permanent change (and really, nothing like this is permanent) or that it grows on me, which is absolutely a possibility. I want to stress again, IN NO WAY WILL I STOP READING THIS BOOK BECAUSE OF IT! May not be my immediate cup of tea, but I trust Waid and Samnee!
That being said, I vote Samnee as my best artist of the year for the past few years. It’s looking like he’ll get that vote from me again this year. The sense of storytelling he has is incredible, let alone his rendering style being unique, but almost familiar in a good way. There’s a total mastery of shadow with his work, especially seen on this run, and I believe it puts him right up there as a Daredevil artist, second only to the defining creator of the character, in my opinion, Frank Miller.
While there were bits of this issue I didn’t love, the ending had me DYING for the next issue. Things like outfit changes can be overlooked, and everyone needs to read this run straight away, before we all fall in love with the Netflix series.
4 suits out of 5