Marvel and Netflix’s first season of Daredevil – which is the first of many Marvel/Netflix projects – received an enormous amount of love from both fans and critics. The dark and sometimes shockingly violent drama revealed not only the origin of Matt Murdock/Daredevil (Charlie Cox), but also his iconic adversary, Wilson Fisk/Kingpin (Vincent D’Onofrio). When the dust finally settled from the Man Without Fear’s first major battle, Kingpin was behind bars and the street level hero was finally wearing a costume similar to the memorable red one he often wears in the comics. Season 2 is already under production, and it’s adding two classic characters to the show: Frank Castle/Punisher (Jon Bernthal) and Elektra Natchios (Elodie Yung). The second season is currently scheduled to be released in 2016, and we want to make sure you’ve done your homework! So, we’ve put a quick list together of five stories that are absolutely mandatory before delving into season 2. Be sure to contact one of our stores to see if the following stories are in stock. If not, check our website!
Frank Miller’s Daredevil collections
If you’re working with a budget and you can only purchase a few Daredevil-related stories, these collections absolutely, positively need to be in your cart. Frank Miller’s time with the agile hero is unforgettable, and it’s especially important because his work marks the debut of Elektra, as well as Daredevil’s conflict with Punisher. To top it off, this includes introduction of the Hand – those pesky ninjas Daredevil frequently bumps into – and Stick and his formidable allies. As if all of that wasn’t enough, there’s also great material with Kingpin, Bullseye, Gladiator, and even Stilt-Man. Remember when we said we’re recommending mandatory reading back in the article’s intro? Well, you’re looking at the comics that are at the very top of the list!
Elektra’s had a number of solid stories over the years, but the recent run by writer Haden Blackman and artist Michael Del Mundo is brilliant. This series is collected in two volumes, and the whole story offers a perfect balance of character insight, thrilling action, and creative world-building. This has so much more to offer than just Elektra stabbing some gunmen. Oh, and we can’t forget to mention that she teams-up with a dragon in this one. Yes, seriously. How can you possibly resist that? Whether you love the character or you’re just curious about her, this is a comic that’s going to keep a tight grip on your attention and never let go. Don’t miss out on this one!
Punisher: Welcome Back Frank
There’s a lot of must-read Punisher stories out there, but Garth Ennis and Steve Dillon’s Welcome Back, Frank is one that nobody should skip. It’s new reader friendly and never lets up as the vigilante is once again tasked with taking down some vicious criminals. The brutal anti-hero has a standout moment with the Man Without Fear – one which Daredevil fans may not find so flattering – and it’s all about their dynamic. And, to be fair, Frank does confess that in a straight up and fair fight, Daredevil is going to put a major hurting on him. This is the Punisher story you should read. The 2004 and 2008 Punisher movies even drew some inspiration from this one. This is a great starting point for new fans and something every Frank Castle fan needs to experience at least once, so go read it
Daredevil vs. Punisher
Seeing as the showrunner reportedly calls the second season of the series “Daredevil vs. Punisher”, this limited series seems like a pretty obvious choice, doesn’t it? Both heroes want to save innocent people from criminals, but how far they’re willing to go to stop these fiends is where these two refuse to see eye to eye. (Sure, you can take that as a Daredevil pun.) While this limited series is loaded with all of the intense and savage action you’d expect from it, it’s not just about the punches – it’s about why they’re punching one another. If you simply want to see these two go at it, here’s your best option!
Daredevil: The Man Without Fear
Now that you’ve watched the first season (if not, go catch up!) it’s time to read the comic that helped inspire it: Frank Miller and John Romita Jr’s The Man Without Fear. Witness the origin of Daredevil – as well as his black suit! – and find yourself immersed in his journey. If you enjoyed the show but have yet to read this one, Miller and Romita Jr’s story is guaranteed to give you a new level of appreciation for the Netflix/Marvel series. It’s a must-read Murdock story and definitely deserves a spot in your collection.
The views expressed herein are solely those of the writer, and not Midtown Comics. Additionally, Midtown Comics makes no representations as to the accuracy of any of the information expressed herein.