By now we’ve all binge watched season 2 of Daredevil on Netflix. I tried to space the episodes out and not burn through them so fast that I couldn’t savor them. The first season was something completely unexpected and amazing. There are a lot of comic book shows on TV now and Daredevil still manages to find a fresh and original take. Needless to say, season 2 had quite a lot to live up to.
Daredevil is one of my favorite Marvel characters and there were many times during this season that I simply squealed with delight. At the end of last season I wasn’t so sure about the full costume, we got so used to seeing him in the black “ninja” outfit, but one episode in and I had completely forgotten about the black outfit. They make some small adjustments to his costume and by the end he looks pretty close to the iconic outfit.
For the most part, I think the show delivered. The new episodes dig deeper into everything and new players are introduced, most notably the Punisher and Elektra. They form the basis of the main plotlines as Daredevil chases the Punisher and fights for him in court as Matt Murdock.
Jon Bernthal’s Punisher is simply great. He nails every aspect of the character, from the military man to the damaged psychopath. The Punisher has always been one of my favorite characters and I was very happy to see him so accurately portrayed. He’s a cold blooded killer, but he is careful about who he is killing, we see him more than once avoid killing someone who is not his target. The first time we see him in action is a bit questionable though. He is firing a shotgun in a crowded hospital, it seems too easy for him to wound or kill an innocent person. Later he claims he’s a crack shot and was not putting others in danger, but it still seems an odd choice.
Elodie Yung is Elektra. She does not appear in the show until several episodes in, and she drastically changes the direction of the show once she appears. I don’t know much about Elektra, mostly just the basics, but her character seemed to be accurate to what I know. The revelation about her in the final episodes does match up with what I know about how she is considered to be special and different. In a Marvel universe where so many characters have died and come back, her death and resurrection were always marked as something special and different.
Simply put, I loved the show. Each episode was tense, action packed and felt like a comic book. However, I did have some problems, especially towards the end of the season. The Punisher’s storyline just seems to kind of fizzle out at the end. He seems to get closure on what he was looking for, but it’s never fully explained and some plot points just seem to be dropped. The last third of the season has the Elektra storyline and the Punisher storyline beginning to come together, but the Punisher’s story closes out with little to no fanfare. I was expecting him to have a larger role in the finale. I kept expecting more and it wasn’t until later that I realized he was finished.
Another big problem is the lack of Ben Urich and the Daily Bugle. Killing Ben in the first season was a shocking moment and his absence is felt through much of season 2. Ben Urich is one of those characters in the Marvel universe who can be a conscience and a sort of Greek chorus. No one really steps up to fill his role this time around. The editor of the paper does have a larger role this time around, but he still isn’t Ben. It’s a minor nitpick, but it feels weird to have a Marvel based NYC and not have the Daily Bugle. I know it’s a rights issue with Spider-man and they didn’t have the agreement in place that they do now in the first season, but it still feels weird. If you can’t use Ben anymore, some of the characters from the Bugle could’ve filled that role. Seeing J Jonah Jameson would’ve been amazing.
The Marvel shows on Netflix are simply fantastic storytelling in a darker and grittier world than the world of the Marvel movies. I’m glad that Marvel has both options available, it helps that you can have both the Avengers and Daredevil exist together in the same world, but telling different kinds of stories
Problems aside I still greatly enjoyed the show and I’m anxiously awaiting Luke Cage in September and then whatever 2017 may hold for us with a possible Jessica Jones season 2 and Iron Fist.