The Streets Are Getting Restless: ‘Daredevil #18’ Reviewed

by Josh Davison

Mild Spoilers Ahead

The Libris Family is reeling after the kidnapping of Belle, matriarch Izzy Libris’ granddaughter, by men working for the Owl. Mindy, Belle’s mother, blames Izzy; Thomas, Izzy’s son and father of Belle, is ready to confront the Owl himself. Detective Cole North confronts the cops at his precinct about the kidnapping. North is tired of letting Hell’s Kitchen go to rot and he rallies the other officers to return to the Kitchen and find Belle Libris. North and his comrades head to the Owl’s base of operations in the Kitchen, but thankfully, they have backup in the form of Daredevil.

Daredevil #19 cover by Julian Totino Tedesco
Daredevil #19 cover by Julian Totino Tedesco

Daredevil #18 sees the police finally returning to their post in Hell’s Kitchen. They are no longer bowing to the whims of the Stromwyns and they are going to face the gang war head-on.

Daredevil #18 captures one of the qualities that made the Netflix Daredevil series so gripping. There is a palpable sense that things are getting worse in Hell’s Kitchen. Kidnappings and killings are plaguing the district and there’s so much growing tension that you feel like something needs to give soon.

Of course, the end of this issue shows that things are definitely going to get worse before they get better.

The Stromwyns are absent for most of this comic, though their influence touches everything that happens. Mayor Wilson Fisk only enjoys a brief appearance too.

Daredevil #19 art by Jorge Fornés, Nolan Woodard, and letterer VC's Clayton Cowles
Daredevil #19 art by Jorge Fornés, Nolan Woodard, and letterer VC’s Clayton Cowles

Jorge Fornés gives the book an enjoyably gritty texture reminiscent of Chris Samnee’s legendary run on Daredevil. Fornés adds to that palpable tension with a deceptively simple style that leaves the calmer scenes unnervingly stark and the climactic moments vast and intimidating. Nolan Woodard gives the book a grim palette well-suited for a story called “Through Hell.”

Daredevil #18 is a phenomenal comic that uses its tight cast of characters and seemingly claustrophobic world to build its narrative pressure to a breaking point. It’s a story that brings you to the edge of your seat and vying for more. Hell’s Kitchen has been suffering under the gang wars, but things are sure to get bloodier yet. This comic gets a strong recommendation. Give it a read.

Daredevil #18 comes to us from writer Chip Zdarsky, artist Jorge Fornés, color artist Nolan Woodard, letterer VC’s Clayton Cowles, cover artist Julian Totino Tedesco, and variant cover artist Paolo Rivera.

Final Score: 9/10

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