More than any other series in comics, Daredevil has explored the evil in men’s hearts. Sure, that’s not to say that there’s no evil in other comics. But few have explored that evil as well as the various creators at the helm of Daredevil in quite the same way. And in Daredevil #34, we see that illustrated once again.
This run has had the theme of consequences. And in this issue — the antepenultimate of the run, — those consequences are not for our heroes, but for the evil men who face them. It’s a dark chapter from Chip Zdarsky, Stefano Landini, Marcio Menyz, and Clayton Cowles.
The war against Bullseye is escalating. The riot at Ryker’s is worsening. The two Daredevils are facing impossible odds, and it’s coming to a head as this volume is drawing to a close.
For months now, the series has followed three separate plotlines. With the series wrapping up in the next two issues, it was inevitable to see them collide. It’s a sign of Zdasrky’s skill as a writer that exactly how is so unexpected. Matt himself is obviously not going to be facing Bullseye until the prison riot is resolved. But bringing together Typhoid and Elektra? In retrospect, it makes perfect sense.
Landini is a late entry to this book’s arsenal of guest artists and he’s a welcome addition. His style probably matches Checcetto’s the closest, with a similar sensibility with layouts and figure work. His line isn’t quite as sharply defined, but it is a stylistic sibling to the series’ main artist for the closing of this volume. It works especially well when paired with Menyz’s work, which continues to improve every issue.
This isn’t a perfect issue. The commentary on private prisons is heavy handed and a bit obvious. It makes the allegory work better than other examples of comics addressing social issues, but it’s still a white character taking a role as a white savior when the problem affects other races much more.
Regardless, this sets up Devil’s Reign in some interesting and exciting ways. I’m curious to see where it goes and hope it keeps up in the final two issues of the volume before the event.
Daredevil #34 is available now from Marvel Comics.
This issue sets up some interesting stakes for the climax of this volume, and its just-announced follow-up. It doesn’t quite land on the real world issues, but the superheroics are top notch from both the art and writing side.