Blinded when saving a blind old man from being hit by a truck, young Matt Murdock was himself struck blind by one of the radioactive isotopes the truck carried. But the radiation did more than blind young Matt; it enhanced his remaining four senses and introduced a new one, a kind of radar-sense by which he could “see” all around him. He became a lawyer by day and a crimefighter at night: Daredevil.
Introduced in 1964’s DAREDEVIL #1 by Stan Lee and Bill Everett, Daredevil, a dark, pointy-headed hero who fights a gritty urban underworld, is often called Marvel’s answer to Batman. I don’t think this is really accurate. While Daredevil’s stories are often dark (and the groundbreaking and career-making work done by Frank Miller are often pitch black), there’s something much more affable about DD. He’s more like a friendly cop on the beat, swinging his signature billy-club and leaning comfortably against a building, albeit one twenty stories up. The current Daredevil comics by Mark Waid, Paolo Rivera and Marcos Martin is much more upbeat than the book has been for years.
Although I grew up reading Miller’s wonderful Daredevil comics, I chose to depict him with the broad, smiling Irish face depicted by the legendary Gene Colan.
More trivia: Miller’s DAREDEVIL comics, many of which involved a ninja clan called The Hand led by Daredevil’s old sensei Stick, were parodied by Kevin Eastman and Peter Laird, creators of the TEENAGE MUTANT NINJA TURTLES (Hand= Foot; Stick=Splinter, etc.). In fact, in their origin issue the turtles were mutated by the same radioactive isotope that blinded Matt Murdock.
I hope you’ll join me tomorrow for the next installment of MIGHTY MARVEL MAY when I present a villain who’s really under my skin.