Friday, March 18, 2016

Daredevil Season 2 First Impressions

Daredevil is back!

One of the best surprises of last year from Marvel after the disappointing Agents of Shield, Daredevil (along with the rest of the Defenders) have been absolute home runs. Season 2 dropped today and I just finished watching the premiere episode moments ago.

It's so good guys.

It took a force of will to not immediately devour the next episode, and I'm really hoping I have the time between my other obligations this weekend to crack out the entire season ASAP. It's the only thing I'm looking forward to until May (more on that in another post).
The opening was cool, and the first scene featuring Murdock and Foggy really shows where the minds of these characters are after the events of the first season: Murdock is in full service mode—"If I take a night off, people get hurt," and Foggy has really turned the corner on his relationship with Murdock.

There was a portion of last season where Foggy was a drag on the events of the show, not unrealistic, but there were many times where I would tense up when Foggy came on. I'm glad to see him over the hump so to speak; still dealing with the fact that his friend is a masked vigilante and what that entails, but accepting and understanding. It's great.

Daredevil's interaction with the arms dealer, Turk Barrett, was an interesting way to showcase what we assume will be part of the major drama of the season. Begging for a break from Daredevil, he gives up on being let off and says, "You know I'll be out in a month anyway."

This is great. I don't know if it's almost too in your face, but knowing that a large part of the action will be the psychological action of "is Daredevil's way effective, worthwhile, etc, or is Punisher's way, although unsavory, actually doing more good?" means that any chance we can get to cast doubt Daredevil's way early on is worth doing for his arc this season.

The first moment we get an idea of the Punisher is really well done and the directors/writers made a great decision to not blow their wad early with the reveal. We see the effects of his actions, and anyone who had watched the trailer knows what is causing it. Waiting for the Punisher to be revealed was the absolute right decision there. Daredevil exploring the Punisher's lair was sufficiently creepy and deranged to the point that we really see the type of Punisher we're going to be dealing with in this show. The exploration of his lair could have been in a horror movie. A good horror movie, and it was just a single scene from this break-out first episode. This is not the stick-a-popsicle-in-your-back Punisher.

Kudos to Deborah Ann Wall for her portrayal of Karen Page already. She was surprisingly great, and I don't know why I keep being surprised by this cast and crew. I was really pleased with her actions in the episode though.

Everything felt like it was a steady progression from Season 1 and where there may have been some fumbling here and there in that Season, the Daredevil machine is a finely tuned machine by now (at least for this first episode!). It was one of the best first episodes of a new season I can recall.

It was reallllly good.

I won't ruin the finale of the first episode for you, but it was great as well and I cannot wait to watch the second episode.

So have you seen this yet? What did you think? What are you hoping happens to the man without fear this season? If the show is going to be as strong and compelling as it was this first episode, it may supplant Season 1 of Jessica Jones as my favorite Marvel show. Here's hoping!

(No more individual episode reviews for Daredevil this season—unless something truly epic happens that I can't help but blog about—but keep an eye out for the Season 2 review sometime next week).

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