More for the Netflix Daredevil!
Like I said before, I’m going to be going over a few characters. This time out, it’s Matt Murdock himself.
Over the course of the season, we come to understand why Matt does what he does. You have to understand that it takes a lot in order to cause someone to go out and beat on criminals. We get to see how he comes to this.
It’s really about pain. It’s something his father taught him, and Matt learned his lessons well.
We know the story of Battlin’ Jack Murdock: a down on his luck boxer who’s got a losing record. Matt’s mother isn’t in the picture, so Jack is doing the best that he can. Things get even tougher for him when Matt gets blinded. Just like in the comics, he’s told to throw the fight for a big payday, and he doesn’t.
Here, Matt overhears the orders to throw the fight, and gets afraid. Jack bets on himself to win, and does, getting a big payday, which he then safeguards for Matt, knowing he’s going to die. Matt hears the shot that kills his father, and is then put on the path that leads him to beating on criminals in a mask.
Matt loves Hell’s Kitchen. He considers it “his” city, and something inside him hates what it has become. He wants people to feel safe there. His story is a simple one: the helpless cannot protect themselves, and so he does what he can, both during the day as a lawyer and at night as the Man in the Mask.
He’s also conflicted, which helps to goad his pain. He’s also Catholic, which is another goad for his pain. Pain is something he’s known in some form all his life, so he thrives on it. As he fights, he doesn’t want to get hit, but he’s not afraid to take the blows, either. And if he gets knocked down, he gets back up. That’s what his father taught him.
He’s a fascinating character to watch, and Charlie Cox plays him perfectly. He’s got secrets to hide, he’s battling through pain (physical, mental, and spiritual), and he keeps going. He’s determined, and doesn’t let things like “love” get in his way. (Rosario Dawson plays a nurse whom Matt could fall for, but his determination to do what he needs to precludes him from moving too far into that.)
In the end, Daredevil is the story of a man doing the best he can, the best way he knows how. When the law doesn’t work, he uses his fists, and vice versa.
Personally, I wish there was more than a single scene that was dedicated to his radar sense, and then, more than the few seconds of it that we got. I understand that the special effects budget isn’t that large, but I would have liked to have seen more of it. (And it confirms something we already know: Rosario Dawson is hot.) Hopefully, we’ll see more of it next season. Possibly during a fight scene.