Marvels’ and Netflix’s brainchild, “Daredevil,” is back with a brand-new season three. This is the fourth series featuring the ‘Devil of Hell’s Kitchen’ after two consecutive “Daredevil” seasons and one crossover series titled “The Defenders.”. Charlie Cox (Daredevil/ Matt Murdock) is back in action, once again donning his battered armor to be the vigilante that he was always meant to be.
After the cancellation of “Luke Cage” and “The Immortal Ironfist,” it’s a big wonder as to what went wrong in the Marvel-Netflix platform over the last two years. Low ratings for shows such as “The Ironfist” and the idea that fans were not impressed by what was being doled out from the franchise itself led to cancellations and doubts of Marvel’s future on Netflix. Naturally, “Daredevil,” being the first established series in the Marvel-Netflix platform, had a huge task daunting over its release: to put back faith in the entire platform. Somehow “Daredevil” did not disappoint.
While lacking the vigor and tension brewing from the first season of the series, the current season had a much deeper approach to the entire theme of the series: character juxtaposition. Season three picks up at the end of “The Defenders,” Matt Murdock has escaped the collapse of the mainline building and wakes up back at his old orphanage, in the care of the local reverend and nun; who are old connections in Murdock’s past. Broken by the failure of not saving his ex-girlfriend Elektra, Murdock’s body and spirit is damaged to the point that his super-sense is not working to its greatest potential, hence making him a lame duck for the first time in a long time.
This is the character development Matt Murdock goes through the entire season, regaining the pieces and gluing them back together. The process is not an easy one as Murdock has lost his spirit which was the greatest fuel to his reason and the series takes a much darker tone, showing the frailty of the man named Matt Murdock and not the vigilante alter ego.
On the other side of the spectrum, the show concentrates on the life of the main antagonist from season one, Wilson Fisk, who seemingly has found himself behind bars with very little headway to escape from prison. Wilson Fisk as determined as he is, has found himself in a really icky spot: no matter how much money he uses, he fails to see himself ram down the bars and take control of the city he once ruled. The character, played by Vincent D’Onofrio, seems to be going through the phase of development also. The show switches between both perspectives and shows the immense juxtaposition of ideas, themes and, moreover, two characters with a similar identity but different goals.
It is this dynamic of duality which keeps the show interesting with it’s fast paced cutscenes, well-though fight sequences and the brilliance of secondary characters such as Foggy and Karen, played by Elden Henson and Deborah Ann Woll, respectively. Diluting the action of the franchise seems to have played a good hand in Netflix’s bank, as this certainly helps the viewer to pay attention to perhaps the crux of the entire season: human beings and their seemingly glass-like spirit.
Two great individuals who possess something which the average individual wouldn’t are suddenly found to be at a spot where they are essentially, mirror images of each other. The idea that two, almost super humans, have fallen to their darkest spots and are trying to make sense of everything that was already ordained, seemingly makes it really relatable to watch and be connected to as a viewer of art. It was a risky gamble to highlight the entire season on this double switch of two characters, yet it works out well due to intensity of the character development and more importantly, the discovery of the Achilles heel of perhaps two of the most loved characters in the entire show.
While we may not be seeing a future series cross-over such as “The Defenders,” we do wait in anticipation with more burning questions for season four of “Daredevil.” It is also to be noted that Netflix has been contemplating on shutting down this series as well, perhaps because of the high-production cost required to create a Marvel show: maybe at the end of the day, it does really depend on the viewer’s perspective?