Comics : Daredevil (Vol.2) #59

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This review was first published on: 2004.

Background...

Tired of fighting the same old faces again and again, Daredevil has finally taken a new tack. Beating the snot out of Kingpin in a particularly public fashion, Daredevil has declared himself the new King of Hell's Kitchen. The king is dead. Long live the king.

There's more going on. Daredevil's identity is sort of public. Basically, most people are pretty sure that Matt is DD, but he retains a sort of "plausible denyability". Nobody that he beats up (which is quite a few people, since beating people up seems to be a big part of keeping the peace in Hell's Kitchen) is prepared to say it was Matt.

All that started a year ago (how time flies). Jumping forward to nowadays, suddenly the Yakuza turn up en masse and take on Matt. His blind girlfriend, Milla, disappears, leaving Matt and about a hundred Yakuza guys hyped up on MGH to do the sword and club thing. Messy. Matt does some damage, then the FBI arrive to mop up the rest, as DD slips away too hospital.

Ben Urich talks to Milla, and finds that she and Matt got married, without telling anybody. Ben goes to track down Matt, and finds him in a tiny medical centre that seems to have a good trade in patching up super-types on the quiet.

In Detail...

"The King of Hell's Kitchen (Part 4)"
Daredevil (Vol.2) #59
Jun 2004 : SM Guest
Summary: The King of Hell's Kitchen: Part 4 (Spider-Man Appears)
Editor:  Joe Quesada
Writer:  Brian Michael Bendis
Artist:  Alex Maleev
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Some FBI guys are watching the Yakuza guys all being released on bail, and get into a bit of a scrap with them.

Meanwhile at the run-down medical centre, Ben spills his theory to Matt. Ben reckons that Matt got all bent out of shape when Karen Page died, since Karen was like his OTL (one true love). According to the theory, Matt basically had a little bit of a breakdown, hence the getting married secretly thing, and the being the new Kingpin thing. Might be some weight in that theory, if ya ask me. Foggy turns up, overhears the spiel, and buys into it too.

Nine days later, Matt is out of care. He and Milla are making up in a safehouse, arranged by good old Foggy. He and Milla get back into the groove, then DD suits up and heads over to see Jessica Jones, who lives with Luke Cage. Daredevil apologises to Cage for having been a bit of an arse over the last few months. Cool, says Cage. Actually, Cage is keen to join DD for a bit of action, since Jessica is preggers, and is driving him nuts.

And what of the Yakuza? They're just organising themselves for a second try at DD. What they didn't expect (and what actually happens) is DD turning up at their place first, looking for a re-match. Plus, Daredevil has brought some friends this time - namely Luke Cage, Iron Fist, and Spider-Man. Actually, Spider-Man claims he's just here to use the bathroom. Heh.

In General...

Ah, who am I kidding. This is great stuff. This is what Daredevil was born to be. Deep characters, the FBI, the Yakuza, plus a bunch of guys in spandex to add color. Alex Maleev's art is dark and moody, and perfectly complements Bendis's style. Buying Daredevil right now is the closest you'll get to a sure thing in comics.

Sure, as a standalone issue, it probably doesn't make much sense - but if that's a problem to you, then well, I really don't care. Marvel is getting back to its roots, where storylines would weave and wind through six or twelve months of continuity. If you're not looking for depth, or complexity, or intelligence, then for goodness sake stay the heck away from this comic, and leave this glossy little gem for somebody who really cares.

Overall Rating...

I guess I have to rate Daredevil #59 against the last five years of this title which have also been excellent. Hence, the four webs, rather than anything higher. Quality inflation.