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Karen Page (Earth-616)

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Early Life

Karen Page was born and raised in Fagan Corners, Vermont.[2] As a little girl in grade school, Karen gained notoriety for competing in spelling bees. In high school her bright streak continued, earning all as and being a cheerleader, eventually captaining the squad in her senior year. She graduated summa cum laude from the University of Vermont with a GPA of 3.8.[3] Following her graduation she looked for work in New York City. Although it was assured Karen would inherit her family's wealth, she sought work to make a name and living for herself.

Nelson and Murdock Attorney's at Law

Karen was hired to work as a secretary for Matt Murdock and Foggy Nelson when they opened their law firm together. She was at first concerned about Matt being a blind man in the big city.[4] She originally met the Fantastic Four when they discovered they were going to need an attorney in order to settle some legal issues. The Fantastic Four sent the Thing to Nelson and Murdock's law office to have them handle those issues.[5] Page was kidnapped quite often during Daredevil's battles, first by the Owl[6] and again by the Purple Man.[7] Falling in love with Murdock, she became Matt's long time love interest.[8] She looked after Foggy in hospital when he was injured by the Enforcers.[9] She was present when Namor, the Sub-Mariner came to the office looking for help.[10]

Even though she kept her love for Murdock a secret, she often looked for ways to cure his blindness. She told him about Dr. Van Eyck, a doctor from Boston who might be able to restore Matt's lost eyesight. But Matt refused, which angered her and she called him a coward.[11] A client Klaus Kruger who was the Duke of Lichtenbad told them about Van Eych's treatment for the blind. Klaus verified the claims, and although Matt sensed that Klaus was lying about something, he asked to go along. Back in New York, Karen received a memo from Matt explaining that the surgery wasn't done, leaving Foggy to jealously assume that Matt backed out at the last moment.[12]

Karen helped Foggy in his campaign to become the next District Attorney of New York City.[13] With Foggy assigned the D.A. job, Matt decided that he needed to get away from Karen and Foggy to reconcile his feelings and forget how he felt about Karen. So he closed Nelson and Murdock and commenced traveling abroad.[14][15] Page was worried about Murdock, and so she visited Foggy at the D.A.'s office to find out if he had heard anything , they received a call saying Matt had been lost at sea.[16] Karen and Foggy received a letter from Matt informing them that he was indeed alive, and asked them for help in proving Ka-Zar's innocence, they then planned to book a flight to England to meet him.[17] Back in New York, Karen was kidnapped by Ox.[18]

Masked Marauder

Karen Page suspicious Daredevil 25Gene Colan

Karen Page suspicious

Shortly after, she, along with Foggy Nelson and Matt Murdock, was kidnapped by the Masked Marauder and the Stilt-Man. While aboard the Masked Marauder's helicopter, believing Matt was falling to his death, she attacked the super-villain. Once it was revealed that he was in fact the landlord of the law firm that she worked for (Nelson and Murdock) he asked her to remove his mask. Daredevil then clipped the Marauder and he apparently fell to his death via his own device.[19]

During this time, Matt had pretended to have a twin brother, Mike, who was really Daredevil. Karen felt attracted to "both" Matt and Mike, but she finally decided she had real feelings for Matt - just before Matt feigned Mike's death.

When Foggy started a romantic relationship with Deborah Harris but Matt failed to pursue one with Karen even if she had already expressed her feelings, she decided to leave her job. Matt pretended to be not interested in her, so that she had a less difficult time.[20] Unable to keep apart from each other, however, they kept contact, with Karen working as secretary to then-D.A. Nelson while Matt remained at the firm.[2]

Finally, at the funeral of Karen's father -who had became the supervillain Death's Head-, Matt revealed her his secret identity as Daredevil[21] and accepted to leave superheroics to marry Page - however, while working with Foggy against organized crime, Matt had to retake his mask, to Karen's chagrin.[22]

Actress career, L.A.

Karen left his job and began pursuing an acting career in Los Angeles, starting with two appearances in TV show Strange Secrets, and insisting that she did not want to continue a romantic relationship with Daredevil.[23] While she insisted she would not have a relationship with a superhero, she would have romanced Matt if he gave up his secret identity.

Karen still harbored feelings for Matt (and vice versa). When Karen flew from Los Angeles to New York for the premiere of her first movie, A Tender Affair, she phoned Matt - but a female guest at his home picked up the phone, leading to Karen wrongly believing that Matt had found a new romantic interest.[24] Still in love with Matt, she found solace in the arms of her agent Phil Hichock, who had secretly harbored feelings towards her, while Daredevil met superheroine Black Widow.[25] However, just after Phil proposed to Karen, she simply returned to Matt,[26] to become his fiancée. Karen immediately broke the commitment after fearing again for Daredevil's life, and gallantly relinquished her romance to the Black Widow.[27]

In LA she met Johnny Blaze.[28] She was kidnapped by a new Death's Head who was looking for her father's research,[29] but was saved by Daredevil and the Ghost Rider.[30][31]

While trying to get contacts for her career, Karen met some shady characters who offered to help, but she distrusted their motives. Trying to clear her head, she visited a road bar, Ghost of a Chance, where she (along with other customers) witnessed how crimelord Wilson Fisk disposed of his disloyal agent Vic "Kruel" Krueller,[32] Page and the other witnessed were tortured and drugged to forget what they had seen.[33] Krueller however survived, badly burned, partly amnesiac and eager to get revenge on the people who couldn't help him.[34]

Karen lowest point

Karen's lowest point

Siding with the shady contacts, she made some pornographic movies while hooked on heroin,[35] working with a number of producers including Jim and Artie O'Farell.[36] One of Karen's movies was titled "A Tail of Two Cities",[37] with another one's title starting with "The Devil in Ms. Pa".[38] Page eventually sold out Daredevil's secret identity. This information reached Wilson Fisk, also known as the Kingpin. Fisk used this information to destroy Matt Murdock's life in a number of ways, while murdering anyone else having that information. Karen escaped from the murderers[35] and, by associating with drug dealer Paulo Scorcese, bought her way back to New York City in exchange for favors in an attempt to reunit with Matt. As Matt had disappeared by then, Karen looked for Foggy's help[39] but, when Paulo followed her to Foggy's place, she knocked Foggy down to prevent Paulo from hurting him and tried to hand herself over to Paulo. Matt, having survived his ordeal, defeated Paulo and,[39] despite Karen's betrayal, took Karen back and they started to build a life together in Hell's Kitchen - albeit Matt had lost his right to work as an attorney.[40]

Recovered

Karen cured herself of drug addiction soon with Matt's support, inspiring Matt to rebuild, with Karen looking again for secretarial job.[41] Karen then arranged a legal help clinic in Hell's Kitchen where Matt could work giving legal advice pro bono without technically working as a lawyer; Karen herself worked at the clinic's hotline helping drug addicts and suicide cases.[42] Since that moment, Karen tested herself periodically for STD's; she eventually stopped worrying but kept the medical routine.[43]

Matt was seduced by villain Typhoid Mary, who was under Kingpin's order to break Daredevil's heart. While Matt started a romance with Mary, he failed to share this information with Karen, even while he was accepting Karen's help to track criminals.[44] As Mary's plot made Daredevil go MIA, Karen first recruited the Human Torch to look for him,[45] then the Black Widow and the Police - just during the Inferno Event.[46] When Daredevil was found, Karen was led to believe that he had had a much deeper romance with Mary; Karen then left Matt, while the Police closed down the clinic.[47] Matt then left the city for a while.[48]

In Matt's absence, Karen started working as an anti-pornography activist[49] for NPO Smut Busters.[50] When he returned and tried to explain the situation and continue their relationship, she was reluctant at first[51] but finally decided to give him a chance.[52] While recovering his lawyer license, Daredevil managed to oust Kingpin, creating a power vacuum that other criminals tried to fill in. Page visited Matt at his just-opened office just to congratulate him on the success and to insist that it was better than still having the Kingpin -and to kiss him once again.[53] They started dating again while insisting, half-jokingly, they were not in dates or in a romantic relationships.[54][55][56] Just when they had re-started their romance -and after Karen got the best part of a comparison with Matt's previous flame Elektra-, Matt pretended to be dead, to Karen's grief.[57] So big was her pain that, when the O'Farells tried to hire her again for a new computer-related project,[36] she briefly considered their offer[50] - until she saw indications that they may have been involved in illegal activities.[58]

While Karen was looking for an angle to solve this mystery (and failed to recruit Foggy Nelson in the process), Kruel came back looking for revenge on Karen and the other witnesses.[37] Kruel died accidentally in an encounter with Kingpin, Daredevil and Foggy Nelson, without ever meeting Karen again. She was busy hiring a P.I., and finally choosing cyborg John Garrett, ex-agent of S.H.I.E.L.D., who proved to be a good shot against the cockroaches in her apartment.[33]

Matt's psyche suffered during this time, leading to an identity crisis where he donned different Daredevil customes and believed to be different people.[59] During this time, Karen saw "several" Daredevils and, hoping for Matt's return,[60] tried to recruit Foggy in this quest. Daredevil, claiming to be "the original Daredevil", interrupted Karen's encounter with Foggy and, to convince Karen, he kissed her.[61] He later visited Karen in her home and claimed to not be Matt before leaving. Disbelieving the claim, Karen recruited Foggy and went to Matt's home to find Matt, in shock and partially dressed as Daredevil.[59] Karen did her best to help him; Foggy, initially aghast because his friends had kept such a secret from him, finally decided to help them.[62] Matt recovered and Karen agreed to rekindle their romance only after he thoroughly trusted everything on her, confessing his reasons to pretend to be dead. She accepted him,[63] and they returned to a situation quite similar to their previous one.[64][65][66]

Radio host

With Matt working at a prestigious lawyer's office, Karen then found a job as a radio talk show host and DJ at Wilson Fisk's WFSK, under the alias "Paige Angel", but she actively kept this job a secret from Matt[67] and her other friends[68]- Karen knew rumors suggesting that WFSK had mob connections and was involved in money laundering.[1] Matt was suspicious, but then Karen discovered that Matt had been looking for his ex-girlfriend the Black Widow (one of the few Avengers to have survived the attack of Onslaught, thus a friend Matt wanted to support) and, as Matt had failed to tell Karen, she was justifiably angry at him. They discussed and, when Matt mentioned Karen keeping her job a secret, she bursted out.[69] Accidentally discovering Karen's job, Matt phoned her at job as an anonymous caller and, on the air and without revealing his identity to the audience, Matt reassured Karen, being supportive of her job as she was doing something good although there were rumors of criminal activities linked to WFSK.[70]

Indeed, WFSK was corrupt and Karen's midnight show had been part of an evil plan where WFSK boss, the villain Insomnia, included low frequencies to prevent people from sleeping. Insomnia, working for Mister Fear, kidnapped Karen in an attempt to make her reveal secret information about Daredevil. Karen refused to cooperate and was saved by Daredevil, but Insomnia escaped with Daredevil's Billy Club, a hint that revealed Matt's secret identity to Mister Fear.[71] Karen kept her job thanks to Rosalind Sharpe, Matt's new job partner, who became an unexpected friend of hers.[72]

Mr. Fear manipulated the events so that Karen was charged with the murder of a psycho policeman who was stalking her. Matt became her lawyer, which was Fear's goal, intending to make Matt lose faith in both her lover and the law system. While in jail, Karen was protected from brutal policemen by a disguised Black Widow, as a secret favor to Matt. Matt proved Karen's innocence, but even then, Fear had a jury member in his pocket - however, the Kingpin of crime discovered this and ensured this person left for medical reasons because Kingpin disliked Fear's audacity and wanted Matt to be in debt. In short, Karen was found not guilty, but Fear was still free.[73]

Death

Karen was offered a daytime radio program in Los Angeles. She decided to accept, separating from Matt mostly to learn to forgive herself.[74] Six months later, Karen was diagnosed as HIV-positive.[75] This was part of an evil scheme where supervillain Mysterio, attempting to defeat Daredevil (and knowing all of his secrets), manipulated Daredevil's friends to drive him mad. Indeed, Mysterio impersonated the doctor and did not even know whether Karen was really HIV-positive or not.[76] Karen then returned to Matt's New York home.[75]

Once Karen was alone at home, she was visited by Mysterio,[76] who was under the alias Nicholas Macabes.[75] Mysterio told Karen that Matt was trying to protect a baby that brought bad luck to nearby people, and that baby was responsible of Karen's and several other people's plights.[43] Karen went to the Clinton Mission Shelter[77] to meet with Matt and asked him to let her care for the baby. As Matt had not talked Karen about the baby, he identified her as being compromised and recriminated her for not accepting responsibility of her own acts.[78] Karen left the church and, after thinking about it, she decided to return there and help Matt in any way he saw fit.[79]

Meanwhile, Mysterio had hired assassin Bullseye[78] and sent him to the Shelter for the baby, with additional orders to massacre anyone there except Daredevil. He did kill nuns and witnesses,[79] with a body count of 11,[77] but failed to find the baby and started battering Daredevil. Karen arrived at that point and tried to help: She asked Sister Maggie to take the baby out while she used a figure of the Holy Child to attract Bullseye attention, pretending to deliver the baby in exchange for Daredevil's life. Bullseye was initially tricked but, when he saw the trick, he hit Karen. Karen grabbed Bullseye's gun and threatened to kill him, but Bullseye was not scared because he knew his gun was not loaded. Finally, when leaving with the baby, Bullseye took Daredevil's Billy Club and threw it at Daredevil as a killing weapon, but Karen intercepted it with her body, dying in his place[79] Soon afterward, Daredevil defeated Mysterio, who took his own life.[76]

Karen Page and Matthew Murdock (Earth-616) from Daredevil Vol 2 5 0001

Daredevil holding Karen's corpse

Karen's funeral was attended by several friends including Liz Allan, Captain America, Becky Blake, Stan Lee, the Black Widow, the Fantastic Four, the Fatboys, Mr. and Mrs. Peter Parker, Kevin Smith and many others. Foggy Nelson could not attend because he was in prison at that point. Matt was so aghast that he could not even give Karen's panegyric; he was later encouraged by Spider-Man, who reminded him of the baby he had saved - a baby that was given up for adoption and that Matt chose to call Karen.[80]

Karen's insurance policy from WFSK allowed Matt to rebuild Nelson and Murdock Law Office.[80]

Powers


Abilities

  • Reasonably skilled legal assistant, actress and radio show host



  • The Krueller saga (Daredevil #338-#342, the only Marvel comics written by "Alan Smithee" which is a traditional pseudonym for authors) presents an important timeline inconsistency affecting Karen and other characters. In that story, Krueller had been attacked by a young Kingpin, who was not yet the ruler of crime, and several people witnessed the event including Foggy Nelson, a law student; Karen Page, a struggling actress; and Glorianna O'Breen, who had just migrated to the US. However: Karen started pursuing a career as an actress in Daredevil #65 (1970). She had been working for Foggy Nelson's firm since Daredevil #1 (1964), where Foggy was already a lawyer - so at no moment Foggy was a law student and Karen a struggling actress at the same time. Besides, Glorianna O'Breen went to the US in Daredevil #205 (1984); by then Kingpin was already a very established mob boss (not an up-and-comer) who had clashed with Daredevil since Daredevil #170 (1981) - and had been seen as a lord of crime since Amazing Spider-Man #50 (1967).

Discover and Discuss

Footnotes

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 Daredevil #359
  2. 2.0 2.1 Daredevil #56
  3. Daredevil Vol 2 #38
  4. Daredevil #1
  5. Daredevil #2
  6. Daredevil #3
  7. Daredevil #4
  8. Daredevil #5
  9. Daredevil #6
  10. Daredevil #7
  11. Daredevil #8
  12. Daredevil #9
  13. Daredevil #10
  14. Daredevil #11
  15. Daredevil #12
  16. Daredevil #13
  17. Daredevil #14
  18. Daredevil #15
  19. Daredevil #27
  20. Daredevil #43
  21. Daredevil #57
  22. Daredevil #58
  23. Daredevil #65
  24. Daredevil #79
  25. Daredevil #80
  26. Daredevil #85
  27. Daredevil #86
  28. Ghost Rider Vol 2 #13
  29. Ghost Rider Vol 2 #19
  30. Daredevil #138
  31. Ghost Rider Vol 2 #20
  32. Daredevil #340
  33. 33.0 33.1 Daredevil #342
  34. Daredevil #338
  35. 35.0 35.1 Daredevil #227
  36. 36.0 36.1 Daredevil #327
  37. 37.0 37.1 Daredevil #339
  38. Daredevil Vol 2 #13
  39. 39.0 39.1 Daredevil #230
  40. Daredevil #233
  41. Daredevil #237
  42. Daredevil #248
  43. 43.0 43.1 Daredevil Vol 2 #3
  44. Daredevil #260
  45. Daredevil #261
  46. Daredevil #262
  47. Daredevil #263
  48. Daredevil #267
  49. Daredevil #295
  50. 50.0 50.1 Daredevil #330
  51. Daredevil #294
  52. Daredevil #296
  53. Daredevil #302
  54. Daredevil #312
  55. Daredevil #316
  56. Daredevil #318
  57. Daredevil #325
  58. Daredevil #331
  59. 59.0 59.1 Daredevil #347
  60. Daredevil #345
  61. Daredevil #346
  62. Daredevil #348
  63. Daredevil #349
  64. Daredevil #350
  65. Daredevil #351
  66. Karen's previous quest against the illegal pornographers and her alliance with Garrett (Daredevil #327 to Daredevil #342) became a forgotten plot, never to be continued.
  67. Daredevil #356
  68. Daredevil #355
  69. Daredevil #357
  70. Daredevil # 359
  71. Daredevil #364
  72. Daredevil #371
  73. Daredevil #375
  74. Daredevil Vol 2 #1
  75. 75.0 75.1 75.2 Daredevil Vol 2 #2
  76. 76.0 76.1 76.2 Daredevil Vol 2 #7
  77. 77.0 77.1 Daredevil Vol 2 #6
  78. 78.0 78.1 Daredevil Vol 2 #4
  79. 79.0 79.1 79.2 Daredevil Vol 2 #5
  80. 80.0 80.1 Daredevil Vol 2 #8
  81. Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe A-Z hardcover Vol. 8



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