Comic Book Reviews – Daredevil #5

Daredevil # 5

Writer – Chip Zdarsky

Artist – Marco Checchetto

Recap – “Daredevil is wanted for murder. Detective Cole North, a tough-as-nails transplant from Chicago, has been tasked with bringing the Kitchen’s Guardian Devil in. After a fistfight in the middle of Hell’s Kitchen with Detective North, Daredevil engages in a shootout underground with the Punisher where he learns of the Owl’s big drug plans. Battered and bloody, Daredevil has set his sights on taking down the Owl next.”

As the Owl meets with his inner circle at their warehouse hideout, Daredevil is seen on security cam footage and the Owl orders his men to kill Daredevil and get the drugs he has stored out of there. Daredevil is ambushed by a goon wearing protective armor ala Iron Man. Daredevil struggles against the armored goon in combat until he sees a chain on the ground of the warehouse. He swings it on the back of the armor and throws it to the back of a truck driving away at high speed. Matt takes a gun from the holster of the armored goon and shoots the tire of the truck, causing the truck to flip and crash, the contents of the truck spilling everywhere.

Daredevil has no time to catch his breath, however, as a large group of men start after him. Daredevil uses a door from the truck to protect himself from a hail of bullets. As he fights the men, Daredevil tells himself he’s not above the law but his war on crime is to fill in the cracks the law misses and does his job to help others. As Daredevil becomes outmatched and overpowered by the Owl’s thugs, Luke Cage, Jessica Jones, and Danny Rand appear on the scene to provide backup to Daredevil, who passes out from exhaustion.

As Daredevil awakens in his friend’s apartment, the trio of heroes tell Matt that the Owl got away, but his men were taken down. Luke asks what’s been going on with Matt. Matt says he wanted to prove to the city he is still a hero after the accidental death of the robber. He wanted to do one last good deed before he must answer for his crime. The trio tell Matt that they aren’t taking him to the police. Luke tells Matt that it was an accident and that sometimes others dies in their line of work and once and awhile, it’s their fault. Jessica says they have to deal with their actions and try to move on as it’s part of the job. Matt calls himself and his friends murderers. In this moment, Matt realizes they can’t be taking the law into their own hands because they aren’t above the law. Luke tries to calm Matt down and asks to use the washroom. As Luke goes to check on his friend, he sees the window of the room open. Matt has fled the apartment.

As Matt makes his way home, he reminisces about the first time he revealed his new costumed identity to his local priest. The priest believed Matt’s foray into becoming a superhero was not what his father would have wanted for him. The priest warned Matt that his violent methods would be his undoing saying, “God loves you, Matthew. Hold on to that and do the right thing…renounce this violence and cast out the Devil.”

As Matt pours himself a drink and rests, he hears the heartbeat of a man in his apartment. It’s Spider-Man! Spider-Man is aware of Daredevil’s recent path of self-destruction and paid him a visit to tell him he needs to retire. Spider-Man tells Matt that he’s giving other vigilantes a bad name and that if Spider-Man sees him back on the streets, he will shut him down immediately. Matt gives Spider-Man his mask. The issue ends with Matt sitting down and weeping, fully realizing his career as a hero is over.

Wow! The end of Chip Zdarsky’s first arc on Daredevil is over and the status quo has been shaken to its core. Not a hoax! Not an imaginary story! Matt’s career as a vigilante is over. When I saw that shadowy figure in Matt’s apartment, I assumed it was Detective North, figuring out Matt’s identity, and arresting him. I was shocked it was Spider-Man and the surprise was well done. Spider-Man and Daredevil have worked together for years. Spider-Man says that he would want someone to tell him when it would be the right time for him to hang up the costume. Spider-Man’s intervention and flashes of maturity in this issue are meant to help Matt, not hurt him. It’s nice to have those friends in your life that pull you aside to help you when you don’t think you need help yourself. Matt’s downward spiral would have killed him. Peter’s love and responsibility for his friend saved Matt.

Where does Matt go from here?

UP NEXT – Daredevil has disappeared from Hell’s Kitchen — and in his absence the real devils are just starting to come out to play…