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Daredevil Vol 4 1 Marvel Comics 75th Anniversary Variant Textless


Preface

A number the incidents recounted of Matt Murdock's life prior to becoming Daredevil are cited to have occurred in specific decades relative to the era of publication. However, the Earth-616 universe operates on a Sliding Timescale these events could not have occurred in the times they appeared due to the fact that it would drastically age the character. As of this writing, it's generally accepted that the accident that caused Murdock to get his power occurred about six years prior to becoming Daredevil. The passage of time is measured based on the Sliding Timescale. Some references are topical in nature and have been generalized in the main body but explained in greater detail in the reference section.

Early Life

Childhood

Matthew Murdock (Earth-616) as an infant from Daredevil Battlin Jack Murdock Vol 1 1

Matt Murdock as an infant. [1]

Matthew Murdock was born the son of Jack and Maggie Murdock in the New York borough of Hell's Kitchen. [2] Matt's father was a boxer who operated under the name of Battlin' Jack Murdock. [3] While Matt was still a young child, Matt's mother left his father.[1] [note 1]

Matthew Murdock (Earth-616) as a boy from Daredevil the Man Without Fear Vol 1 1

Matt Murdock as a child. [4]

Jack Murdock fell even deeper into his depression. Although he gave into his vices and began doing shady jobs for the Fixer, he still loved his son, even he though he lost his temper at times.[1] Maggie later wrote to Jack expressing her shame, and asked that Jack tell their son that she was dead. A lie that Jack kept until his dying day. [5] Unknown to both Jack and Matthew, Maggie secretly kept an eye on her son.[6] As a youth, Matt became a prankster and trouble maker. One day he even stole a local police officers baton and hide it at Fogwell's Gym, where his father would go to fight. Matt also took care of his father, who was spiraling further and further into alcoholism.[4] Matt quickly became aware of his father's criminal activities when one of the local children beat him up over the fact that Jack had strong armed the boy's father for money owed to the Fixer. Jack tried to console his boy by telling him that he was going to raise him to be a better man than him. Still, Matt continued to idolize his father, helping him train when he started getting new fights and tried cleaning up his act.[5] He also had his son promise never to become a fighter like him and to focus on his studies.[4] Not long after this Matt came home to tell his father that he beat up the boy who attacked him earlier.[5] The punishment taught Matt a strong lesion about law and punishment.[note 2] This compelled Matt to believe that if everyone broke the law -- even his own father -- he would learn the law. Matt became focused on his studies. Matt also obeyed his father's wishes and did not engage in fights with his classmates. Matt was relentlessly bullied, and he was called "Daredevil" by his classmates. Matt began to secretly exercise and train himself acrobatics and how to fight at Fogwell's Gym. It was during this time that Matt gained the attention of the Chaste, a sacred order of fighters who were the counter force to the evil Hand, and they sent their blind warrior Stick to watch over the boy.[4] [note 3]

The Accident

Matthew Murdock (Earth-616) the accident from Daredevil Vol 1 1

The accident that changed Matt Murdock's life forever. [3]

About six years prior to the modern age of heroes[note 4] when Matt was a teenager, Matt spotted an old blind man crossing in the street into oncoming traffic. Matt dived into the road to push the man out of the way and was struck by an Ajax Chemical Company truck hauling radioactive waste. The canisters of this waste spilled across Matt's eyes. Matt was rushed to a hospital where he underwent various surgeries in order to save his life, but the accident made him blind. While in recovery, Matt discovered that by some twist of fate, the accident also enhanced his other senses.[3][4][5] When the increased sense began to be too much for young Matt, he was briefly visited by Master Izo of the Chaste, who was checking on his status and reported it back to Stick.[7] Matt was also visited by Sister Maggie, a local nun, whom he confided his new abilities in. Matt was unaware that she was really his birth mother. She convinced Matt to keep his new abilities a secret to everyone, including his father, calling them a gift from God.[4]

Matthew Murdock (Earth-616) being trained by Stick from Daredevil The Man Without Fear Vol 1 1

Being trained by Stick. [4]

After Matt's release from the hospital, Jack attempted to get compensation from the Ajax Chemical Company. They refused to cooperate, warning Murdock the elder that if he went after them legally, they would exposed his involvement with the Fixer.[4] Meanwhile, Matt continued training in secret even though he was blind,[3] but struggled. He was then approached by Stick, who offered to assist him in learning how to utilize his new heightened senses, including a "radar sense" that allowed him to detect objects in relation to him. Stick was a stern teacher, often punishing Matt for being too driven by his emotions.[4][8]

University Education

Matt eventually graduated from high school and managed to land a scholarship at State University. On his first day, both Matt and his father took a bus up to the area. Shortly after arriving, Jack became incredibly protective of his son, defending him when the Dean of the University suggested that Matt attend an inaugural speech for those with disabilities. Later they met Matt's doomroom mate, Franklin "Foggy" Nelson who was also studying law. Jack worried about his son being able to take care of himself, especially when he was harassed at a local diner by some locals. However, when Matt went back in the middle of the night and defended himself from the townies, Jack witnessed the fight and was convinced that his son was now a man who could look after himself.[9] While at school, Foggy and Matt quickly became fast friends.[3]

A year later and at 19 years old, Matt and Foggy had advanced to learning pre-law at Columbia University.[10] However, Matt had a secret dark side hitherto unknown to Foggy. When Nelson was being harassed by another student named Brad, Matt secretly jumped him in the middle of the night and left him tied up naked on the roof of the school, warning Brad that there would be swifter punishment if he should torment his friend any further.[11] During this time, Matt also first met Elektra Natchios, the daughter of a Greek diplomat who was studying political science at Columbia. Matt was instantly smitten by her, but was unable to get close due to her bodyguard who was constantly at her side. One day he distracted the body guard long enough for Matt to ask her out on a date, confiding in her that he had enhanced senses.[10] Their date went well and when Matt asked to see her again, she agreed that they should.[12] Elektra proved to have a dark side to her as well, and she led him on a merry chase across the city. The date came to an abrupt end when she pretended to be a woman in distress, attracting the police. When they attempted to arrest Matt, Elektra quickly slipped away and the police released him when they discovered that he was blind and believed that he was no threat. The following day, after Foggy warned Matt to stay away from Elektra, she took him on a joy ride to a nearby cliff.[11] There she purposely plunged into the icy water below, and managed to slip away on Matt.

Matthew Murdock (Earth-616) training with Elektra from Daredevil The Man Without Fear Vol 1 3

Murdock hones his skills with Elektra. [13]

More smitten than ever by Elektra, Matt sneaked into her father's mansion during a large party, using his enhanced senses to slip past security. However he was soon discovered and was forced to flee, but was winged by a bullet. Matt managed to get back to his dorm room and treat his wound. Elektra then paid him a visit and the two tore the room apart while in the throws of passion. Thus started the beginning of a whirlwind relationship that the pair shared for months. [13][14][15] However, Elektra was convinced she was being guided by some unseen "voices" in her head that told her their relationship would soon come to an end.[13] Elektra's next birthday proved to be a day of tragedy for both her and Matt Murdock. Matt had bought her a scarf for her birthday. But soon learned that Elektra and her father were kidnapped by a group of terrorists who were holding them hostage. Wearing the scarf as a make-shift mask, Matt used his enhanced abilities to sneak into the building where the terrorists were keeping his lover and her father. While Matt was able to incapacitate the terrorists, Elektra's father Hugo walked into one of the windows. Mistaken for one of the terrorists, Hugo was gunned down before her daughters eyes.[10] Elektra was deeply saddened by the death of her father, and quickly broke off her relationship with Matt and led him to believe that she was returning home to Greece.[13][12]

Becoming Daredevil

The Murder of Jack Murdock

Matt and Foggy began attending the Harvard School of Law,[13] By this time, Matt's father Jack had begun winning matches to the point where he was competing in a championship fight against Carl "Crusher" Creel in a match at the Madison Square Garden. What Jack didn't know was that the Fixer was setting the matches so that Murdock won, intending to make Murdock take a dive in the fourth round so he could reap the gambling winnings.[3][note 5] When Matt and Foggy learned the news, the pair decided to return to New York in order to see his father in the ring.[3] Jack took both Matt and Foggy out for dinner, Matt's knowledge of Jack working for the Fixer troubling him the entire time.[16] Still seeing his son as weak, Jack was at odds about throwing the fight -- torn between his desire to be the champ, and fear for his son's safety. One night when practicing at Fogwell's Gym, Jack was attacked by some of the Fixer's men who were hired to make sure that Murdock didn't train for the upcoming fight. Jack was rescued by a masked man, who was struck so hard that Jack believed his savior would be left with a black eye, unaware that the mystery man who saved his life was his own son.[17]

Matthew Murdock (Earth-616) original costume from Daredevil Vol 1 1

Original costume. [3]

In the middle of the fight, Jack witnessed as someone bumped into his son, knocking Matt's sunglasses off his face. Seeing that his son had a black eye, Jack put two-and-two together and realized that his son could look after himself after all.[18] With his son cheering him on, Jack Murdock turned the match around and defeated Crusher Creel in the ring. Shortly thereafter, he was beaten and fatally shot by the Fixer and his men.[3][4][18] Matt poured into his studies and graduated from law school summa cum laude,[19] and school valedictorian. Foggy tried to convince Matt to open a law office with him. Meanwhile, Matt attempted to get justice for the murder of his father. While the Fixer and his men were brought to court, they got off thanks to a high priced lawyer and possibly bribing the judge.[16] Matt decided to then take the law into his own hands, justifying that he could maintain his promise to his father by assuming a costumed identity.[3] Matt then modified his father's old fighting boxing gear into a costume. At that point he decided to take his old schoolyard nickname as his own, and thus the costumed hero Daredevil was born.[16] As a weapon, Matt modified his walking stick into an adaptable billy club.[3][20]

Avenging His Father

Matthew Murdock (Earth-616) finally catches up with the Fixer in Daredevil Yellow Vol 1 2

Daredevil finally catches up with the Fixer. [21]

As Daredevil, Matt began a campaign of terror both in and out of costume to bring his father's killers to justice. He began attacking criminals around Hell's Kitchen to try and the location of the Fixer.[3] In his civilian guise, Matt tracked down two of the Fixer's men -- McHale and Gillian -- and beat them within an inch of their lives in an alleyway.[11][note 6] Daredevil then tracked the Fixer and the rest of his men back to Fogwell's Gym.[note 7] Murdock took down Marcello and the man who shot his father, a crook named Slade.[11][21] Meanwhile, the Fixer himself[3][20][22][11][21] and his man Angelo,[11] attempted to flee the scene.

Daredevil went after the Fixer first, chasing him down into the subway. The Fixer eventually suffered a heart attack due to his poor health and fear of Daredevil.[3][20][22][11][21] The Fixer died before he could inform Daredevil on who his employer was.[21] Daredevil pursued Angelo, chasing him into a brothel. There he was attacked by the prostitutes who worked there, as they mistook his attack as a police raid. Trying to fight the women off them, Matt knocked one of the prostitutes out of a window, sending her falling seemingly to her death. Matt was horrified by this sudden death and fled the scene. Seeking out his old trainer Stick, Matt was shocked to find that he had abandoned him.[11] Matt later learned that mobster Alexander Bont was the Fixer's employer. Daredevil confronted Bont ad his nightclub, but the mobster refused to admit anything. Before Daredevil could beat the truth out of him, the FBI raided the building. While Daredevil fled the scene, the Feds arrested Bont on various criminal charges.[23]

Return to Hell's Kitchen

Matthew Murdock (Earth-616) from Daredevil The Man Without Fear Vol 1 5

Makeshift costume. [24]

With his father's death avenged, Matt returned to Boston where he had secured a job working for the firm of Sussman and Castro where he was in line to become a junior partner of the firm. That all changed when they sent Matt on assignment to New York City. Matt took the time to visit his old neighborhood and saw how far it had fallen into lawlessness. Going to check the ruins of Fogwell's Gym, Matt met a young girl named Mickey and befriended her. The two would train together in the gym at night. Reconnecting with Foggy, Matt found the civil law cases that Nelson dealt with to be a refreshing change to his work in Boston and agreed to help Foggy out in his free time. By this time the Kingpin was secretly making his bid to take over New York's underworld. Getting into prostitution and drugs, the Kingpin ordered some of his child pornographers to procure a child. These men hired some drug addicts to do the job and they kidnapped Mickey. Finding her hat, Matt realized that she was abducted by someone. Luckily, one of the addicts had the idea to try to ransom off Mickey to her parents for drug money, allowing Matt a line to follow her captors. Unfortunately, word got back to the Kingpin who sent his assassin Larks to kill the addicts and take the girl to a warehouse. Matt put on a make-shift costume, and recovered the police billy club he stole years earlier as a child and then prepared to confront Mickey's captors.[19]

Matt single handedly took down all the Kingpin's men on the scene and freed the children there. However in the ensuing scuffle, Larks fled with Mickey as his prisoner. Matt meanwhile was briefly arrested by the authorities when they arrived on the scene. Breaking free, Murdock chased after Larks in a stolen police car a to another warehouse. There Matt ordered the hitman to let Mickey go. When Larks tried to shoot him, Matt deflected the bullet with his billy club. The bullet struck Larks right between the eyes, killing him instantly. Realizing the good he could do, and enjoying his time back home, Matt quit Sussman and Castro and took Foggy up on his offer to start their own law firm together. While the two were debating whose name would go first, Foggy flipped a coin calling tails. The coin was caught by Stick, who was still secretly watching Matt. Stick wished him luck and told Murdock that the coin landed tails. This was how the law office of Nelson and Murdock came to be.[24] When Matt initially moved back to New York he rented out two apartments, one on top of the other, the second under an assumed name. He then constructed a secret passage way between the two. The lower apartment was converted into a secret gym which Matt used to keep himself in peak physical shape.[note 8] Using money from Foggy's father,[3] Matt and Foggy opened their law office in Hell's Kitchen. Needing a secretary, Foggy went ahead and hired a young woman named Karen Page. When Matt first met Karen, he instantly fell for the young woman.[21] This proved to be the starting point of a long and rocky relationship between the two.

Early Adventures

Yellow Costume

Matt was initially insecure to reveal his growing feelings for Karen and chose to keep them a secret. As Daredevil, Murdock began fighting crime in the region, busting up a car theft ring run by the super-villain known as Electro. Soon Nelson and Murdock obtained their first high profile clients -- the Fantastic Four, who hired Matt to go over their lease agreement of the Baxter Building and patent documents.[25][note 9] To celebrate their first clients, Foggy took both Matt and Karen to their old university drinking hole, the Marlin Cafe. There Matt impressed them with his billiards playing skills winning a bet against other patrons. Matt realized that Foggy was also interested in Karen when he offered to escort her home at the end of the night. Matt blew off some steam from this revelation by fighting off the bar patrons he hustled earlier when they attacked him. Matt also took an interested in Slade, the man who shot his father, who was sitting on death row for his crimes. Matt tried to get Slade to confess who the Fixer's employers were but found that the mobster refused to talk. Shortly there after a woman came seeking the legal help of Nelson and Murdock but abruptly fled their office. They were soon approached by an eccentric millionaire who called himself the Owl.[26][note 10] The Owl sought Nelson and Murdock's services to defend him over accusations of his shady business dealings and tax evasion. [27]

Matthew Murdock (Earth-616) and Karen Page from Daredevil Yellow Vol 1 4

Matt and Karen Page go bowling. [28]

Going to inspect the Baxter Building, Matt took the opportunity to change into Daredevil and discovered that Electro had broken into the building to steal Mister Fantastic's formulas. [25][28] Electro briefly had the upper hand when he placed Daredevil in an experimental rocket and launched him into orbit, but Matt managed to land the rocket safely. [25] Daredevil then tracked his foe to the Radio City Music Hall where he incapacitated him and turned him over to the authorities. [25][28] The Fantastic Four were later unimpressed when it appeared as though Matt failed to do his job and they fired him. Although this proved to be short lived.[25][note 11] As Matt spent more time with Karen and Foggy both inside and outside of work, Matt's feelings for her grew and he also became amused by Karen's growing interest in his alter-ego. Matt later attended the execution of Slade, who still refused to talk. Seeing his father's killer executed brought him no satisfaction. [28] One account states this was also the time when Foggy confided in Matt that he intended to ask Karen to marry him.[28][note 12]
Matthew Murdock (Earth-616) hooded costume from Daredevil Vol 1 3

Hooded costume. [27]

Murdock then went to go and represent the Owl in court only to learn that his client had skipped out on the court appearance. Trying to track the Owl down, Matt came up with the idea of making a zippered hood on the back of his costume to carry his street clothes in. It was also around this time that Karen mentioned a doctor she knew who could potentially cure Matt of his blindness. Matt deflected her suggestions secretly fearing that the restoration of his sight would strip him of his other enhanced senses.[27][note 13] Soon after Matt clashed with the Owl as Daredevil, however there are two differing accounts of what happened. The first account states that the Owl showed up at Nelson and Murdock to force Matt to be his legal "mouth peace". During the ensuing battle with Daredevil, Karen walked in on them. The Owl took her hostage, forcing Daredevil to surrender and he took them back to his Aerie along the shores of New Jersey. [27] Another account states that Karen was kidnapped and held prisoner at a bank to force Murdock to work for him. [29] In either case, Daredevil freed Karen and battled the Owl -- who augmented himself with a cloak that allowed him to fly. The two ended up falling into the Hudson River where the Owl seemingly drowned.[note 14] It was during this meeting that Matt accidentally mentioned Karen's name while dressed as Daredevil. [27][28] Karen also coined the phrase often associated with Daredevil thereafter, as the public and Daredevil himself began referring to himself as the "Man Without Fear". [29]

Early Interactions

Peter Parker (Earth-616) meets Daredevil for the first time from Amazing Spider-Man Vol 1 16

Daredevil meet Spider-Man. [30]

Before long, Daredevil began interacting with other members of New York's super-hero community. He accompanied Foggy and Karen to a circus that boasted the inclusion of Spider-Man in the act. However this turned out to be a fraud perpetuated by the so-called Circus of Crime whose leader the Ringmaster hypnotized the crowd to rob them. Being blind, Matt was unaffected and changed into Daredevil to stop them. When the real Spider-Man showed up, the Ringmaster hypnotized the wall-crawler and forced him to fight Daredevil. Matt battled Spider-Man until the hero eventually shook off the Ringmaster's control. Daredevil then left Spider-Man to defeat the Circus of Crime so he could slip back to his civilian identity when the Ringmaster's hypnosis finally wore off. [30] Matt, Karen and Foggy later attended a sculpture exhibit put on by the Fantastic Four's ally Alicia Masters. [31] Later when news that Spider-Man had apparently became a coward, the bad news concerned Daredevil.[32][note 15]

Shortly thereafter, Daredevil found himself mysteriously transported to Gotham City, a city that exists on an Earth of a distant cosmos. There he encountered Gotham City's costumed defender, the Batman. The pair saved dimensional traveler Access from a speeding car. Upon contact with Access, Daredevil was shunted back to his native universe, his memories of this strange adventure fading away.[33][note 16] Daredevil later had his first large battle with the majority of the super-hero community when the villain known as Sundown was threatening to plunge the Earth in darkness. Matt joined the Fantastic Four, Spider-Man, the Avengers, the X-Men and Doctor Strange in trying to contain Sundown. Ultimately, the villain surrendered to the authorities when he almost killed a young girl who lived in the same apartment building as he did. [34] Daredevil was not always successful in stopping crooks. Such as the time he was too late to stop Councilman Hector Rodriguez from being shot by crooks in front of his son Nestor. [35]

Matthew Murdock (Earth-616) modified yellow costume from Daredevil Vol 1 5

Modified original costume. [36]

It was around this time that Daredevil slightly modified his original costume. Soon a criminal known as the Matador began committing a series of brazen robberies across the city, prompting Matt to try and capture him as Daredevil. When Matt was sent to bring Karen to a costume party, he recognized the Matador's heartbeat in that location. Trying to stop the criminal bullfighter from robbing the party as Daredevil. However all the conflicting sounds interfered with Matt's radar sense and he was easily defeated by the Matador. Having lost face with the public, Matt then decided to lure the Matador out of hiding by announcing to the press that Daredevil and the Matador were the same man. Despite evidence of the contrary, the press published the story. Reading this the Matador went to confront Murdock at his office and found Daredevil waiting for him. This time Daredevil was able to trounce the Matador and turn him over to the authorities, restoring his public image.[36][note 17] Daredevil's battle with the Matador was covered in the Daily Bugle by reporter Ben Urich, [37] a man who would frequently be involved in the life of Daredevil in the future.

Nelson and Murdock were later called to represent a man named Zebediah Killgrave -- the so-called Purple Man -- who was arrested for robbing a bank. Matt brought Karen with him to interview his client. Much to Matt's surprise, he learned that Killgrave had the power to make others do his bidding when he ordered the prison guard to release him and left with Karen. When Matt tried to stop the Purple Man as Daredevil, Killgrave ordered those around him to attack the hero. [38][37] It was during this altercation that Daredevil's hood was ripped by the attacking mob, prompting the hero to abandon this design. Seeking a means to get credible evidence to convict the Purple Man, Matt modified his Billy Club to conceal a miniature tape recorder. This account also states that he also added a means of deploying a sheet of plastic from his Billy Club. [38] Matt managed to track the Purple Man and Karen to the Plaza Hotel, [38][37] clashing with wrestlers that Killgrave enslaved. [38] In order to get Daredevil to stop following him, the Purple Man ordered Karen to go to the edge of the hotel's roof and threatened to have her jump. [38][37] Matt tricked Killgrave into explaining how he got his powers and forced people at the bank to give him the money. [38] With this confession, Daredevil was able to wrap up Killgrave so none could be effected by his ability to control people and turned him over to the authorities.[38][note 18] During this rescue, Karen suggested that Daredevil change his costume, making it entirely red as it fit his name better and it was also her favorite color. Matt was shocked when Karen later asked Daredevil out on a date. Karen's sudden romantic interests in Daredevil, also seemingly put the Murdock/Nelson/Page love triangle a rest, at least for the time being. [37] Later when Professor X, leader of the X-Men, was seeking allies to help his students defeat the Juggernaut, Matt was briefly contacted telepathically. However, Murdock was unable to assist as he was in the middle of a court case. Instead the X-Men defeated the Juggernaut with the help of the Human Torch. [39]

Red Costume

Namor McKenzie (Earth-616) vs Daredevil

Daredevil defeated by the Sub-Mariner. [40]

Soon a new criminal named Mister Fear assembled the Ox and the Eel into his Fellowship of Fear. Daredevil attempted to interfere with their robbery disguised as a movie shoot, but was driven off by Mr. Fear's fear pellets. Later, Murdock was lured to Zoltan Drago's wax museum to see a statue of Daredevil being put on display, unaware that Drago was secretly Mr. Fear and this was all a trap to draw out Daredevil. Detecting his foes with his radar sense, Matt returned as Daredevil, but had to flee when Foggy got in the middle of the fight and was injured. When the Fellowship tried to kill Nelson in his hospital room, Daredevil was there to defend him. Ultimately, Daredevil defeated the Fellowship and turned them over to the authorities. [41] By this point, Nelson and Murdock were consulted by the Altantean ruler known as the Sub-Mariner. The Sub-Mariner sought to sue the governments of the surface world for control of the entire Earth. When the two lawyers explained how difficult that task would be, Namor stormed out and caused a rampage to get arrested and a day in court, Matt went after him as Daredevil in his new all-red costume. Daredevil was defeated by Namor, who later surrendered to the authorities. Matt and Foggy then represented the Sub-Mariner in court, but Namor quickly abandoned his case when his lover Lady Dorma informed him that there was trouble in his kingdom of Atlantis. When Namor later broke out of jail to return to his home, Matt tried again to stop him as Daredevil. Unfortunately, the Man Without Fear, was no match for the ruler of Atlantis, and Namor managed to escape.[40][note 19] While Daredevil was busy pursuing Namor, a member of the Teen Brigade failed to recruit him to stop the Encahntress and the Executioner rampage through New York.[42][note 20]

When the Fantastic Four lost their powers, they called on Matt Murdock to be their power of attorney in the event they were killed by one of their foes. Matt's arrival coincided with an attack on the group by their arch-nemesis Doctor Doom. During the attack, the Fantastic Four fared poorly with technological devices fashioned by Mister Fantastic to imitate their lost powers. Matt managed to slip away and change into Daredevil and led the Fantastic Four on a counter attack against Doctor Doom, who had just taken over the Baxter Building.[43][note 21] Daredevil and the FF managed to infiltrate the Baxter Building. While Daredevil managed to keep Doom distracted, Mister Fantastic recovered his re-energizer device and use it to restore his team's power. Doom was soon defeated and sent fleeing by the FF's Thing.[44][note 22]

As the old love triangle between Matt, Karen and Foggy reasserted itself, Daredevil began fighting a new foe called Stilt Man, who could increase his height with hydraulic legs. In his professional career as a lawyer, Murdock also took the case of Wilbur Day who accused his former employer Carl Kaxton of stealing his designs for a hydraulic device. As it turned out, Day was really Stilt Man, was attempting to steal the technology and frame Kaxton of the crimes he committed as Stilt Man. Daredevil quickly got involved, and when Wilbur attempted to flee with a stolen molecular condenser, Day accidentally exposed himself to the device and was shrank to seeming nothingness.[45][note 23] Matt finally relented to Karen's constant suggestion that he go and see optical surgeon Doctor Van Eyck. As it turned out Van Eyck now lived in the nation of Lichtenbad which incidentally ruled by Duke Klaus Kruger, whom Matt and Foggy attended school with. Kruger invited Matt to his nation to see Van Eyck, but Murdock soon learned that this was all in order to gather valuable men of status in an insane bid to take over the world. As Daredevil, Matt battled the Duke, who upon realizing he was going to lose set off a nuclear pile to explode. Dr. Van Eyck then sacrificed his life to stop the pile from going critical while Daredevil dealt with Kruger. With Van Eyck dead, Matt was unable to restore his long lost vision and returned home to the United States. [46]

The Reform Party Conspiracy

Daredevil was later invited to the wedding of the Fantastic Four's Mister Fantastic and Invisible Girl. The nuptials were interrupted when Doctor Doom used an Emotional Changer to gather an army of super-villains to attack the wedding. These attackers were held off by the super-heroes that were in attendance. Daredevil intercepted a team of Hydra terrorists who were rushing the wedding in a truck carrying a vortex bomb. Daredevil diverted this bomb into the Hudson River just as an army of soldiers led by the Atlantean barbarian known as Attuma were surfacing. The detonating bomb forced them back down into the waters below. [47] Daredevil braved the powerful tornado unleashed by the weapon and searched the wreckage for those in trouble, rescuing Daily Globe reporter Phil Sheldon from a overturned taxi cab. [48] Daredevil then joined the other heroes in fighting up the super-villain army until the Watcher provided Mister Fantastic with a Time Displacer that banished all the villains back to where they came from, leaving none with a memory of what happened. The wedding then continued on without incident. [47][48][31]

It was about this time that members of the Reform Party were seeking Foggy to run for District Attorney in the next election. The Reform Party's run for office also coincided with a criminal known as the Organizer and his minions, Cat-Man, Ape-Man, Bird-Man and Frog-Man, began committing a series of crimes and attacks against the Reform Party. Matt Murdock got involved as Daredevil when the four animal men attacked a Reform Party even aboard a yacht. Later, the Organizer's minions tricked Daredevil into assisting them in a bank robbery, so that he would be blamed for it. Daredevil then staked out another Reform Party gathering, and when it was attacked by the Organizer's minions again, he failed to stop them from kidnapping Debbie Harris, daughter of Reform candidate Bernard Harris and Foggy's old high-school sweetheart. It appeared as though Debbie and Foggy's old romance was rekindled, giving Matt the full attention of Karen for once. However, during the altercation, Daredevil knocked out the Cat-Man and he was apprehended. Cat-Man was then taken into police custody for questioning. When the Ape-Man later tried to eliminate his comrade to prevent him from talking, Daredevil attacked. Daredevil allowed the Ape-Man to think he was defeated and followed him back to his hideout. There he was shocked to learn that Debbie was in league with the Organizer. [49]

Matthew Murdock (Earth-616) Daredevil Vol 1 11

Disguised as the Frog-Man[50]

Daredevil was spotted spying outside the animal men's hideout and was attacked. Daredevil fought them off, but unaware that the masked hero knew Debbie was on their side, left her tied up. Matt freed her in order to keep a better eye on her. In his civilian guise he and Foggy sat in on Cat-Man's confessional, learning that the Organizer wanted to ensure that Abner Jonas and his Reform Party won the election. Matt then tried to convince Foggy that there was something fishy about the entire thing. Although Foggy believed Matt was jealous of his party nomination, he agreed to test out his theory. The pair then paid a visit to the three heads of the Reform Party, Abner Jonas, Bernard Harris, and Milton Monroe. At the meeting, they both claimed to have evidence that proves the Organizers identity. When the Organizer's men later sacked the office of Nelson and Murdock to find this supposed evidence, it convinced Foggy that something was not on the up and up. Matt, Foggy, and Karen then spent their time trying to question the three heads of the Reform Party, with little to no success. Confronting Debbie as Daredevil, Matt learned how the Organizer had ordered the destruction of the mayor's residence. There he incapacitated the Frog-Man, and stole his costume. Then tipping the police off on how to patch into the video cameras on the Frog-Man's costume that the Organizer used to witness their operations, he then exposed their plot, although the Organizer and his men fled. Convinced that the Organizer was one of the three men in charge of the Reform Party, Daredevil went to the campaign headquarters. There was a brief hostage situation with the animal men, before Abner Jonas was exposed as the Organizer. With his plot to have control of the Reform Party foiled, Abner and his minions were arrested, including Debbie. However after the fiasco was over and with Nelson and Murdock facing financial problems due to the fact they were focused on the Reform Party, Matt decided to leave the firm, thinking it was best for everyone, and said he was going on a vacation. [50]

Devil Abroad

Matt took a cruise that was later attacked by the modern day pirate known as the Plunderer. Matt changed into Daredevil and battled the Plunderer and his pirates. Impressed by Daredevil's courage and fighting prowess, the Plunderer captured the costumed hero and took him aboard his submersible ship. The Man Without Fear was then taken to the Plunderer's secret hideout on Skull Island in the Savage Land, a prehistoric paradise hidden in Antarctica. Their arrival coincided with an attack by the native Swamp Men and the jungle adventurer known as Ka-Zar and his sabretooth tiger Zabu. During the ensuing battle, Daredevil was struck from a blow from Ka-Zar that stripped him of his radar sense. The battle climaxed when Ka-Zar caused the Plunderer's ammo dumps to explode. Wounded by some shrapnel, Daredevil was dragged to the safety of a nearby cave by Ka-Zar. Realizing his ally needed medical help, Ka-Zar went into the jungle seeking out Ju-Ju Berries, fruit with remarkable healing properties. This left Daredevil at the mercies of Ka-Zar's mortal foe, the savage known as Maa-Gor. [51] Although he was without his radar senses, Daredevil managed to hold off Maa-Gor until the brute was sent fleeing by the Plunderer and his men who easily took Daredevil prisoner again when they discovered that the hero was now totally blind. The Plunderer then went seeking Ka-Zar, and upon capturing the jungle man revealed that he was the Plunderer's long lost brother.

Daredevil and Ka-Zar were then taken back to the Plunderer's castle in England. There the Plunderer drugged his minions and then revealed to Daredevil that his brother had the other half of an amulet that could unlock a hidden cache of Anti-Metal. Matters got more complicated when the Plunderer's butler Feepers turned out to be an international spy, seeking to obtain the Anti-Metal for himself. His attack, caused Ka-Zar to flee the castle with Daredevil in tow. In order to try and get to his brother, the Plunderer used his influence as a British lord to get Scotland Yard to put on a manhunt for both Daredevil and Ka-Zar. [52] Ambushed by a spy who lifted Ka-Zar's half of the medallion, Daredevil followed him back to the Plunderer's castle. Daredevil was forced to flee when Scotland Yard showed up with Ka-Zar as prisoner. This gave the Plunderer the other half of the medallion and free access to the Anti-Metal which he used to develop weapons that could melt metal. After getting Foggy to come to England to defend Ka-Zar in court, Daredevil went after the Plunderer. Disguised as one of the villain's minions, Daredevil witnessed as the Plunderer tried to take over a missile defense base. Ultimately, Daredevil defeated the Plunderer and had him confess his entire scheme, clearing Ka-Zar of all wrong doing. Matt was then reunited with Foggy and Karen, and came up with a flimsy excuse to explain what happened to him after he was reported lost at sea when the Plunderer first attacked. [53] This was the first of many time Murdock would have to come up with excuses to explain his absences.

Not long after Matt returned to the United States, the Ox broke out of prison with criminal scientist Karl Stragg. Stragg promised to boost the Ox's intelligence, but in reality the device he created caused them to swap bodies. Stragg, now in the Ox's body, then went on a rampage across the city leading to another clash with Daredevil. Daredevil was defeated in front of Karen and was left dressed in the Ox's outfit, while Stragg left with Karen as his prisoner. Daredevil was arrested by the authorities, but quickly released thanks to Foggy filing a writ of habeaus corpus. Daredevil then tracked down Stragg and battled him on a rooftop, which ultimately ended when Stragg ended up falling over the edge to his death. [54]

Foggy Nelson: Daredevil

Matthew Murdock (Earth-616) versus Spider-Man from Daredevil Vol 1 16

Daredevil vs Spider-Man. [55]

When a criminal calling himself the Masked Marauder attempted to rob an engine from World Motors his scheme was foiled by Spider-Man. Seeking to prevent his further interference, the Marauder had his minions disguise themselves as Daredevil and had them attack the Wall-Crawler. The attack had the desired results: Spider-Man ended up hunting down and attacking the real Daredevil. While the two fought it out, the Masked Marauder and his men managed to escape with the new prototype engine. Believing that Daredevil was working with the Masked Marauder, Spider-Man's Spider-Sense led him to the offices of Nelson and Murdock while on the hunt for Daredevil. Discounting Karen and Matt as possibilities, the Web-Slinger assumed that Foggy was secretly Daredevil and began threatening him. [55] Although Karen and Matt were able to talk Spider-Man out of harming Foggy, Matt was disturbed when Nelson didn't discourage the idea that he was Daredevil in order to impress Karen. A situation that would have far reaching consequences later. As Daredevil, Matt tipped Daily Bugle owner J. Jonah Jameson to the fact that the engine that was stolen by the Marauder was useless without a special fuel formula. Sure enough Jameson broadcasted this news on television bringing the Marauder and his minions back to World Motors. This time, Spider-Man and Daredevil worked together to stop their mutual foe. Although the scheme was foiled, the Masked Marauder escaped capture. Unknown to all, the Marauder late overheard Foggy Nelson claiming to be Daredevil to Karen Page at the scene. [56]

In order to further convince Karen that he was Daredevil, Foggy costume designer Melvin Potter design a Daredevil costume for him to wear. Potter, who sought to prove himself to be a great villain, convinced Foggy to stage a fake battle to further impress Karen. By this time, Matt was following Foggy around to make sure he remained safe, and soon learned of this plan. When Potter later attacked Foggy in his costumed identity of the Gladiator, Matt quickly realized that Potter was playing for keeps. When Foggy was knocked out, Matt stepped in as the real Daredevil and defeated the Gladiator, leaving him for the authorities. However, this did nothing but further convince Karen that Foggy was really Daredevil. [57] This idea backfired on Foggy when the Gladiator "outed" him as Daredevil and was later broken out of jail by the Masked Marauder. When the Marauder later sent his minions to attack Foggy in his home, Daredevil came to his rescue. The battle got the news out that Nelson was not really Daredevil. Matt was dishearted to hear that Karen was still impressed by Foggy led Matt to believe that he had lost her for good. [58] Later when the Avengers were looking to add Spider-Man to their ranks, the group tracked down Daredevil to ask questions about the Wall-Crawler. While Daredevil gave Spider-Man a sterling recommendation, the Web-Slinger failed to complete his initiation task of trying to capture the Hulk. [59]

Identity Crisis

Daredevil soon became aware that someone was looking to kidnap his alter-ego when he stumbled upon an ambush at his office. Returning to his apartment and changing back into his civilian guise, Daredevil allowed himself to be captured. He was then taken to the Owl's Aerie, and learned that his foe had survived their previous encounter. Murdock learned that Owl spent some time in jail and was putting on a mock trail for Judge Lewis the man who put him there. Murdock asked to bring a witness, and the Owl mockingly allowed him to do so, giving him five minutes to find one on the grounds. This allowed Matt to change into Daredevil and attack his old foe, however he was quickly captured. [60] Daredevil broke free and during his battle with the Owl, his foe unleashed a giant mechanical version of his name sake. With the island becoming destabilized by a sudden volcanic eruption, the Owl fled the scene, allowing Daredevil to rescue Judge Lewis and escape on the mechanical owl. [61]

Shortly thereafter, the Masked Marauder and Gladiator resurfaced. While trying to make a bid for leadership of the Maggia criminal organization, the Masked Marauder created his Tri-Man android, empowering it with the skills of the Mangler, the Dancer and the Brain. They had the creature attack Madison Square Gardens to issue a challenge to Daredevil. Because Matt was stuck at the office with Karen Page, he had to think quickly. He convinced Karen to help him bluff the Tri-Man by "pretending" to be Daredevil until the "real" hero arrived. When at the Square, Matt managed to slip away and battle the Tri-Man. However as he began to gain the upper hand, the Masked Marauder threatened to kill both Karen and Foggy if he did not surrender. [62] Stalled for time, Daredevil quickly grabbed the Tri-Man as the Masked Marauder attempted to teleport the android away. Taken to the Marauder's lair, Daredevil defeated the Mangler, Dancer and Brain in battle. While engaging the Gladiator, the Masked Marauder used his teleporter to send both DD and the Gladiator to an abandoned movie set in Europe so the Maggia bosses could witness the battle first hand. When their battle unleashed a lion, Daredevil rescued the Gladiator from the big cat. Unwilling to fight someone who saved his life, the Gladiator called the battle over. The Maggia agreed, and welcomed him into their ranks while rejecting the Masked Marauder. They then left Daredevil stranded in Europe with no money to get back home. [63]

While wandering through Europe, Daredevil came across some revolutionaries and fought them off. Stealing one of their aircraft, he managed to fly to England where he then learned that his ally Ka-Zar was being accused of being the "Midnight Stalker" and was surrounded by authorities at his castle. Coming to his ally's aid, Daredevil quickly learned that the Plunderer had escaped prison. Finding their mutual foe hiding below the moat of Plunder Castle, Daredevil and Ka-Zar defeated the Plunderer and turned him over to the authorities. In thanks, Ka-Zar gave Daredevil the money he needed to return home to the United States. However, Daredevil was in for a rude surprise when he returned home, as during his absence Karen and Foggy opened a letter addressed to him. The letter was from Spider-Man, revealing that he knew that Matt Murdock was secretly Daredevil. [64]

Mike Murdock

Establishing Mike

Matthew Murdock (Earth-616) posing as Mike Murdock for Karen and Foggy from Daredevil Vol 1 25

Posing as Mike Murdock. [65]

When Mike returned to New York, he witnessed a new villain calling himself Leap-Frog testing out his coiled spring boots. When Matt returned to his office, he was shocked to hear that his friends figured out his double identity. Matt quickly explained his absence with another flimsy excuse. When they pressed him further to confirm his double identity, Matt quickly came up with another weak explanation: Daredevil was secretly his previously unheard of twin brother, Mike Murdock. After he failed to capture the Leap-Frog during a robbery, Matt cemented this idea by posing as "Mike Murdock". To this end, Matt wore loud clothes, talked flippantly, and used his enhanced senses to appear that he was not blind. This convinced both Karen and Foggy. Karen was fascinated by "Mike" while Foggy disliked him. Later, Daredevil easily trounced Leap-Frog and turned him over to the authorities. Ironically enough, the Leap-Frog requested that Nelson and Murdock represent him in court. [65]

While Foggy defended the Leap-Frog in court, Matt attended the trial as Mike Murdock. Things went sour when the prosecution foolishly allowed Leap-Frog to put on his spring boots, allowing him to escape. The Silt Man, who also survived his previous encounter with Daredevil, also was on site attempting to break Leap-Frog out of court to form an alliance. The plan went south when Leap-Frog broke his leg jumping out of a window giving Mike time to change into Daredevil. Although Daredevil defeated Stilt Man, he was rushed from the scene by the Masked Marauder. [66] On the trial of Stilt Man, Daredevil crossed paths with Spider-Man and asked the Wall-Crawler to keep a look out for his foe. Meanwhile, the Masked Marauder and Stilt Man had formed an alliance and utilizing a helicopter armed with a disintegrating force field, flew to the offices of Nelson and Murdock and kidnapped Matt, Foggy and Karen due to their association with Daredevil. Growing impatient, the Masked Marauder sent Stilt Man out to find Daredevil. Matt disappointed Karen by "outing" his brother and was tossed from the helicopter. This allowed Matt to change into Daredevil and swing back. While battling the Masked Marauder, their foe was knocked out of the helicopter and into the disintegrator and was seemingly slain. Daredevil then defeated Stilt Man leaving him in the Hudson River for the authorities to recover.[67][note 24] Matt was later invited up to Carter College where he was to give a lecture on the legal implications caused by visits from extra-terrestrials on Earth. Incidentally his lecture coincided by an attempt by the Queega to render everyone on Earth blind so they could harvest the Earth's mineral resources. Daredevil turned down their officer to join them and have his sight restored and destroyed their "Weapon Supreme" that was causing the entire world to go blind. With their mission failed, the Queega fled the Earth.[68][note 25]

Reinforcing the Charade

Matt decided that he was finally going to stop beating around the bush and ask Karen to marry him, but was at a loss as to propose to her as "Mike or Matt". When the Masked Marauder's men found a note tying Nelson and Murdock to Daredevil's secret identity they agreed to work with a mobster calling himself the Boss to try and learn this secret. To that end, they kidnapped Karen and left Foggy tied up for Matt to find. Matt decided to use this opportunity to further cement the idea that Matt's "brother Mike" was really Daredevil. Matt dressed up in his Daredevil and went to the hideout of the boss with a gun. Then posing as a truly blind man, Matt allowed himself to be captured. Then, after being left alone, broke free and attacked the Boss as his men as "Mike". Although the Boss and his men were defeated and Karen saved, Matt realized that Karen would be at great risk if they were ever married and decided to continue keeping his secret. [69] Later when hearing Thor's foes Mr. Hyde and the Cobra had broken out of prison, Matt decided to capture them as Daredevil. To this end, he disguised himself as Thor to try and capture the crooks, but this earned him the ire of Thor who attacked him. When the reason for Daredevil's ruse was revealed, Thor gave DD his blessing to find Hyde and Cobra but not while posing as him. The two villains were secretly watching this altercation and attacked Daredevil, then fled, allowing him to follow them to Mr. Hyde's secret lab. During the ensuing battle, Mr. Hyde doused Daredevil's eyes with a chemical that meant to blind him. It instead stripped the Man Without Fear of his radar sense, leaving him truly blind. Hyde and Cobra then fled, leaving Daredevil to stumble around their hideout with the authorities closing in. [70]

Still seeing this as a means to further adding credibility to his triple-identity, Matt managed to find his way back to his apartment and change back into Mike Murdock. Then going to Nelson and Murdock, convinced Foggy that "Mike" had gone blind. When the Cobra and Mr. Hyde later resurfaced across the street from their building, Daredevil tried to get Foggy to whisper visual cues to him while he tried to cross between the buildings on his billy club. Thinking Daredevil somehow managed to restore his eye sight, both crooks fled. However later while walking out in the street with Foggy, Daredevil was spotted by the Cobra who knocked Foggy out and took Daredevil prisoner. [71] The pair took Daredevil to another one of Mr. Hyde's hideouts located in a lighthouse where they intended to kill Daredevil. Hyde let it known that there was an antidote on hand as well. Daredevil then managed to break free and kill the electricity in the lighthouse. The trio struggled with each other in the dark, but Daredevil managed to recover and drink the antidote. With his radar sense restored, he easily trounced the two villains in the cover of darkness and turned them over to the authorities. [72]

Daredevil later failed to stop the Beetle from committing a robbery. Needing a rest from everything, Matt as "Mike" convinced Karen and Foggy to accompany him to an exhibition in Montreal, Canada, for a short vacation. Their train was also carrying a rare necklace which the Beetle sought to steal. When the villain struck, Matt changed into Daredevil to face him. Chasing his foe across the Canadian wilderness, he let his guard down when entering a small town, allowing himself to be captured by the Beetle's men who were the only occupants there.[73][note 26] Exhausted after his recent ordeals, Daredevil allowed the Beetle and his men to take him to the exhibition in Montreal where they planned to unmask the hero before a televised event. This gave Matt plenty of time to rest himself. When the Beetle took over one of the exhibition shows and attempted to unmask Daredevil, the hero fought back. He also received unexpected help from Foggy who was witnessing the scene with Karen. At his full fighting peak, Daredevil was able to trounce the Beetle and his minions and turn them over to the RCMP and recover the stolen necklace. [74]

Body Swap

Matthew Murdock (Earth-616) explains his Mike Murdock disguise from Daredevil Annual Vol 1 1

Matt Murdock explains his Mike Murdock disguise. [75]

Soon Matt earned enough money to purchase a brownstone in order to own a home, as he began to feel that having the two apartments would cause other to be suspicious and potentially discover that he was Daredevil. The brownstone was also equipped with a secret gymnasium which Matt used to train. While out on patrol Daredevil crossed paths with Electro and the Matador, learning that the former was trying to gather a group of criminals he called the Emissaries of Evil, to get revenge against Daredevil. Although the masked hero got the drop on his foes, they managed to escape. Electro also gathered the Gladiator, Stilt Man, and Leap-Frog. After battling a number of his foes individually, he managed to follow the Leap-Frog back to the Emissaries hideout and battle them as a group. The group was not trained to fight together and Daredevil easily trounced then. Tying them up with electrical wire and tying it to a dynamo, Daredevil left the villains incapacitated by Electro's powers for the authorities to collect. [75]

Later the offices of Nelson and Murdock was attacked by the villain known as the Trapster, who came to let them know that he intended to murder Daredevil to boost his reputation knowing that the law office had connections to the hero. Matt slipped away to change into Daredevil and battled the Trapster over the city on the villain's anti-gravity craft. Pasting the Wizard's anti-gravity discs to Daredevil and leaving him afloat in the atmosphere, the Trapster then disguised himself as Daredevil to plant a bomb at the Baxter Building. [76] Daredevil managed to free himself and rush to the Baxter Building and dispose of the bomb, saving the life of the Invisible Girl in the process. After being thanked by the Fantastic Four, Daredevil continued on his chased the Trapster into the subway. There the Trapster was incapacitated by Doctor Doom, who had heard of their battle over the radio and hoped to capitalize on the situation. [77]

Doom then incapacitated Daredevil and brought him to the Latverian embassy. After toying with Daredevil and explaining how he survived his last encounter with the Fantastic Four, he then trapped Daredevil in a device that caused them to swap bodies. While Doom was freed to get his revenge against the Fantastic Four in Daredevil's body, the Man Without Fear found himself trapped in the body of Doctor Doom.[78][note 27] Daredevil was far from helpless, as he used Doom's tyrannical reputation to trick the embassy guards into freeing him from his cell. He then sent the guards after "Daredevil" before going to warn the Fantastic Four via radio. However by the time Daredevil went after Doom, the Latverian monarch managed to convince his men that he had swapped bodies with the Man Without Fear. After fighting off Doom's goons, Daredevil caught up with his enemy with a plan in mind. Handing Doom a radio, Daredevil returned to the Latverian embassy and declared war on all nations bordering Latveria. Hearing the news, Doom rushed back to his embassy and reversed the body swap and cancelled those orders. While Doom was busy, Daredevil smashed the body swap machine and fled. Doom got a revenge of sorts by calling ahead to the Fantastic Four and tricking them into thinking that Doom was still masquerading as Daredevil.[79][note 28]

When Daredevil went to warn the Fantastic Four about Doom's schemes, he was attacked by the group. After defeating the Human Torch in battle, Daredevil crossed paths with both Spider-Man and Thor and convinced them to help him warn the Fantastic Four. This led to a battle atop the Baxter Building until the Invisible Girl intervened and corroborated Daredevil's story, ending the conflict. [80]

The "Death" of Mike Murdock

Not long thereafter, Ape-Man, Bird-Man, and Cat-Man broke out of prison and formed the Unholy Three who began working for the criminal scientist known as the Exterminator. Daredevil went on the manhunt for the trio of criminals but failed to capture them. By this point, Foggy was being sponsored to be the District Attorney for New York once again, and in a bold move began dating Debbie Harris after her release from prison. Foggy's renewed romance with Debbie left the playing field clear between Matt and Karen. When the two couples went on a double date, the dance club they went to was attacked by the Unholy Three. Using their T-Ray blasters they seemingly disintegrated Debbie, however Matt's enhanced senses allowed him to detect that she wasn't really dead, but displaced out of sync with time.[81][note 29]

Matthew Murdock (Earth-616) fakes Mike Murdock's death from Daredevil Vol 1 41

Faking Mike Murdock's death. [82]

Going back out searching for the Unholy Three as Daredevil, Matt fell victim to their T-Ray weapons as well and found himself in a time displaced limbo along with Debbie and other victims of the weapons. However soon the effects began to partially wear off on the other victims and they faded from sight, leaving Matt all alone. [83] Realizing his radar sense could help him find a portal out of this timeless realm, Daredevil pierce through the barriers keeping him out of normal time. Finding himself mostly back in sync, but a intangible wraith, Daredevil managed to force himself back in sync with time by hitching onto the back of a speeding car. Rushing back to his home to get a spare costume, Daredevil crossed paths with Karen and learned that Foggy had since been captured by the Unholy Three. Able to track them thanks to the vibrations set by the T-Rays, Daredevil was able to find the Exterminator's hideout. Seeing this as an excellent opportunity to finally ditch the Mike Murdock identity, Daredevil jumped into battle. He trounced the Unholy Three, and when battling it out with the Exterminator, he set his massive T-Ray device to explode. While the Executioner was seemingly slain in the blast, Matt left a shred of his costume behind to leave Foggy to believe that Daredevil was also killed in the blast.[82][note 30]

The "New" Daredevil

The Jester

With the "death" of his Mike and Daredevil identities, Matt attempted to leave the world of costumed heroics behind and pursue a relationship with Karen Page. However Foggy's run for District Attorney earned the ire for Richard Raleigh, a crooked politician running for mayor of New York. To try and force Foggy out of the race, Raleigh hired the criminal known as the Jester to do the job. The criminal later took Matt hostage in order to force Foggy to quit the race. When left alone, Matt changed into Daredevil and battled the Jester. When the Jester attempted to flee back to Raleigh's headquarters, the pair found him killed following another unrelated scheme in his bid for power, the Jester meanwhile escaped.[84][note 31]

Not long after this, Karen reached her breaking point over waiting for Matt to express his feelings for her. Unable to do so for fear of his enemies harming her, Matt pushed her away and Karen abruptly left Foggy's employ. A move Matt instantly regretted later. While stopping a thief from stealing a supply of radium, the radioactive materials had an adverse effect on Matt altering his personality. Hearing that Captain America was putting on a charity fight at Madison Square Gardens, the addled Daredevil attacked the Star-Spangled Avenger there until the effects wore off and he abruptly ended the fight. [85] The Jester resurfaced shortly thereafter and in his civilian guise of actor Jonathan Powers, announced that he would reveal Daredevil's identity on the George Washington Bridge later that night. Sure enough Daredevil was lured to the location where Powers faked his death, making it appear as though Daredevil had murdered him. As the Jester, Powers vowed to bring Daredevil to "justice" and lured the Man Without Fear into a battle with the police waiting in tow. [86] Now on the run from the law, Daredevil fled to the Statue of Liberty where the Jester followed and engaged him in battle. During the fight a police helicopter arrived on the scene and Matt was forced to break from the fight to save the life of an officer on board. This moment of heroism led to his captured as DD was injected with a tranquilizer and placed in a police infirmary. [87]

While the authorities did not unmask Daredevil to maintain his civil rights, when another prisoner tried to unmask Daredevil, Matt used this as an opportunity to escape. Matt managed to find his way home, and when taking the time to think about his situation he recalled how Jonathan Powers and the Jester wore the same cologne. Realizing the Jester had faked his death, Daredevil posed as his foe on live television in order to draw the real Jester out of hiding. In a one on one battle, Daredevil trounced the Jester and unmasked him on live television, exposing Powers' scheme and clearing his name of murder.[88][note 32] Daredevil later attended the wedding of for the Avengers Yellowjacket and the Wasp. [89]

Identity Compromised

Daredevil later made a guest appearance for soldiers that were fighting in a conflict in Southeast Asia. There he met a wounded soldier named Willie Lincoln whose injuries were slowly robbing him of his vision. Willie's last sight was of Daredevil's performance for the troops. Meeting with Willie one-on-one, Matt learned how Willie used to be a police officer back in New York before being framed for accepting a bribe from mobster Biggie Benson and lost his job. Detecting that Willie was telling the truth, Daredevil recommended that Lincoln look up his alter-ego when Willie returned home. Months later, Willie took Daredevil's advice, and Murdock was able to clear Willie's name. When Benson sent men to eliminate Lincoln, Matt was there to stop them as Daredevil. In the aftermath of the battle, Willie learned that Murdock was actually blind, and this inspired him to rejoin the police force, despite being blind.[90][note 33]

On the eve of the election, Daredevil learned that his foe Stilt-Man was hired to assassinate Foggy Nelson to prevent him from being elected. With the attack happening at the offices of Nelson and Murdock, Matt had no choice but to order Foggy and Debbie out of his office alienating Matt from his best friend. As Daredevil, Matt defeated Stilt Man, and Foggy eventually won the election. However, because Matt had no explanation for his sudden rude behavior, their friendship had been adversely affected. [91] Matt's troubles began to get much worse when Biggie Benson hired robotics expert Starr Saxon to build a Plastoid, a robot that tracks its prey by scent, to destroy Daredevil. The robot was able to track down Daredevil, even in his civilian guise. Just as Matt was deciding to give up being Daredevil for good, the robot attacked and caught him off guard. [92] Daredevil managed to briefly incapacitate the robot, but their fight spilled out into the street where the robot lost its programming. When it returned back to Saxon's lab for new orders, Daredevil followed it. In the confusion, Saxon accidentally programmed the Plastoid with Biggie Benson's scent. With his lab now ablaze, Starr Saxon fled the scene. Daredevil went after the Plastoid, following it to the prison. Before DD could reach Benson he was accidentally winged by an officer's bullet injuring him. [93] Daredevil was too weak to stop the rampaging Plastiod so it was taken down by the authorities, but not before it crushed Biggie Benson to death. Daredevil was given medical attention an injected with a pain killer while being treated and a blood test was taken. Meanwhile, Saxon located a tracking device/detonator for his Plastoid in Murdock's home and deduced Daredevil's double-identity before destroying his Plastoid. With Daredevil's most guarded secret revealed, Saxon vowed to make Daredevil's life a living hell. [94]

The "Death" of Matt Murdock

Matthew Murdock (Earth-616) first kiss with Karen Page from Daredevil Vol 1 51

Matt and Karen share their first kiss. [94]

The injection began reacting with he radioactive particles in Matt's blood, causing him to suffer dizzy spells. Still wanting to retire as Daredevil, Matt began patching things up with Foggy and managed to track down and set a date with Karen Page. En route, Matt was confronted by Starr Saxon who revealed he knew Daredevil's double identity before leaving. Later while on his date with Karen, the couple finally shared their first kiss. The date was later interrupted by Saxon. With his mind deteriorating and illness setting in, Matt fled into the streets before passing out in an alleyway. [94] The authorities, with an antidote to cure Daredevil's deteriorating condition, managed to convince the Avenger known as the Black Panther to assist them. Although the Black Panther managed to administer the cure to Daredevil, he accidentally discovered the heroes identity, but kept this a secret at the time. The pair managed to track down Starr Saxon, who was hiding out at Murdock's home with Karen as a hostage. Although Matt defeated Saxon, he was forced to let him go free in order to preserve his identity. Going after Saxon alone again, Daredevil could not bring himself to kill his foe and was forced to once again let him go free. [95] Spending a moment to think about the events that led to obtaining his powers, Daredevil later came to the conclusion that his problems were not because of Daredevil, but because of his civilian identity and decided that in order for Daredevil to live, Matt Murdock had to die. [20]
Matthew Murdock (Earth-616) faking his death in Daredevil Vol 1 54

Matt Murdock fakes his death. [96]

Assuming a false identity, Matt rented a plane to "pilot himself". While in the air, Matt set the plane to explode and jumped ship, leaving the public -- including Foggy and Karen -- to believe that Matt Murdock died in a horrible accident. Continuing his hunt for Saxon Starr was forced to steal back his walking stick/Billy Club from Karen. [96] Daredevil later happened upon the electrical powered villain known as Megawatt in the middle of a robbery. Easily trouncing Megawatt and his men and leaving them for the authorities. [97] During his hunt for Saxon, Daredevil heard news that Mister Fear had apparently been released from prison and was on the loose again when he openly challenged Daredevil to a battle. DD battled who he thought was Mister Fear, but suddenly became frightened and ran from the fight, altering public opinion of the Man Without Fear, who now branded him a coward. [96] Although addled with fear whenever he ran into action, Daredevil decided to look into what led to Drago's release. Not only did Daredevil learn that Drago was released from prison and subsequently murdered, Daredevil soon discovered that whoever was posing as Fear managed to slip the last of his enemy's fear pellets into the holding compartment of his Billy Club, causing his bouts of fear. Tracking down the new Mister Fear, Daredevil defeated him in combat and unmasked him and was surprised to find that his foe was Starr Saxon. Utterly defeated, and with no means to further blackmail Daredevil, Saxon then seemingly committed suicide by jumping off his anti-gravity disc to the ground below.[98][note 34]

Crime-Wave

Matthew Murdock (Earth-616) reveals his identity to Karen Page in Daredevil Vol 1 58

Daredevil reveals his identity to Karen Page. [99]

With the threat of Starr Saxon over, Daredevil decided that it was time to reveal his true identity to Karen Page. However when he went to Foggy's office, Daredevil learned that Karen had returned to her family home in Fagan Corners, Vermont. It was here that Matt learned that her father was scientist Paxton Page, a scientist who successfully invented the cobalt bomb, but was branded a traitor by refusing to share his secret with the government. Daredevil tracked Karen to her parents mansion and learned that her father had gone missing, and that a strange creature calling himself Death's Head had began terrorizing Karen and her mother. When Daredevil eventually clashed with the Death's Head, the mystery menace defeated him and left the hero dressed up in a spare costume when the authorities arrived. [100] Narrowly escaping begin gunned down, Daredevil then began a manhunt to find Death's Head, but Karen found him first hiding in her father's old lab. By this point, Daredevil had correctly deduced that Death's Head was actually Karen's father, driven mad by his experiments with cobalt. In the ensuing battle, Paxton sacrificed his life saving Karen from a tipping vat of molten cobalt. After Paxton's funeral, Daredevil confronted Karen at her father's grave, revealing to her that he was actually Matt Murdock. [101]

After explaining everything to her, Matt and Karen decide to, the two rekindled their romance. Returning to New York, Matt revealed that he faked his death convincing the public that it was to "assist" Daredevil in defeated the new Mister Fear. Upon his return, Foggy offered Matt a chance to be his Special Assistant while trying to stop a the crime spree set about by a costumed criminal only known as Crime-Wave. After a press announcement, Matt asked Karen to marry him. However Karen refused to do so unless Matt gave up being Daredevil, a condition that Matt agreed after he made an appearance in a parade being put on by the United Way. This parade was interrupted by a motorcycle riding assassin called Stuntmaster, a aging stunt man seeking fast money and one last chance at fame by taking a job to assassinate Daredevil for Crime-Wave. Daredevil easily trounced Stuntmaster, and realizing that Crime-Wave needed to be stopped by any means possible did not announce his retirement as planned. When Karen realized that Matt wasn't retiring from costumed heroics, she walked away on him. Later in the court room, Matt was able to try and convict Stuntmaster for attempted murder. [99] When Matt and Foggy's friend Willie Lincoln literally stumbled upon Crime-Wave's hideout in a night club, he was able to get out by playing the role of a homeless blind man. Later recounting this to his friends, Willie made headlines news. Later when Crime-Wave sent his assassin Torpedo. Daredevil was on hand to defend Willie from his would-be assassin, who fell to his death from the top of a building batting the hero. [102]

Notations

  1. The circumstances that led to this departure differ from account to account. In Daredevil: Battlin' Jack Murdock #1, Jack Murdock's account states that Maggie realized she was pregnant, she came to believe she was living a life of sin and ran off to a convent. There she gave birth and raised Matthew for six months, before turning the boy over to Jack to raise. While not outright stated, it may have been due to Jack's inability to get into matches and began drinking heavily while also working as an enforcer for a mobster known as the Fixer. In Daredevil Vol 4 #7 Maggie Murdock later stated that she didn't initially leave Jack until well after Matthew was born. Suffering from Postpartum depression, Maggie soon grew paranoid believing that her husband was working against him and neglecting her in favor of their son. One night she finally snapped and attacked Jack who was completely shocked by the attack. Maggie quickly fled the Murdock home and wandered the streets until she eventually found shelter in a missionary where she eventually became a nun. Maggie's account of events sound more likely, as Jack was not only an alcohlic with a low-self image, his profession as a boxer could have also led to brain injuries. Any one of these things, or a combination of all could have led to false recollections on his part.
  2. In Daredevil: Battlin' Jack Murdock #2 which features Jack Murdock's account of events, he struck back at his son to teach him a lesson that there will always be someone stronger. When Matt stood his ground, Jack struck his boy again and Matt ran out on his father. In Daredevil: The Man Without Fear #1, Jack merely struck his son for not listening to him.
  3. Variations of these events have also been told, but omit mention of Jack's work as an enforcer, his alcoholism or abusive behavior as well as any reference to Stick or the Chaste. Namely the original telling of Daredevil's origins in Daredevil #1. Daredevil #53 and Uncanny Origins #13 among others. It was not until Daredevil: The Man Without Fear Vol 1 was published that these plot elements became common parts of Daredevil's mythos.
  4. Rough estimation, per Daredevil #500 published in 2009, the narrative states that Murdock's accident happened 18 years prior. In some schools of thought the general rule of the Sliding Timescale of Earth-616 is that for every four years of publications one year of has elapsed in the Marvel Universe. "Year One" in the Modern Age of Heroes is 1961. Between 1961 and 2009, 48 years of publications had been printed. Divided by four makes it about 12 years as having elapsed on Earth-616. 18 minus twelve makes these events having occurred six years prior to the birth of the Fantastic Four.
  5. Also recounted in Daredevil #53, Daredevil: The Man Without Fear #1, Daredevil: Yellow #1, Daredevil: Battlin' Jack Murdock #3. The name and appearance of the opponent Jack Murdock fights in the ring changes from telling to telling. Originally in Daredevil #1, his opponent is referred to as "Rocky Davis," in Daredevil #53 it's a boxer whose first name is Pedro. It was not until Daredevil: Yellow #1 was Carl "Crusher" Creel -- the future Absorbing Man -- was retconned as the boxer that Jack faced in the ring. Per Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe: Daredevil 2004, Creel is the "official" opponent to Jack Murdock and lists Daredevil #1 Creel's first appearance.
  6. The narrative of this story was originally framed in a way that states that Matt's father was murdered prior to his going to University and that he was still a teenager when he went after the Fixer. However this contradicts all other established continuity. However as elements of this story pertaining to the Fixer are considered part of Daredevil's origin story, they must be "pushed forward" in Murdock's timeline. As confirmed in Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe: Daredevil 2004 all events regarding Matt getting revenge against the Fixer in Daredevil: The Man Without Fear #2 should be placed here.
  7. Most accounts show Daredevil in costume here, mainly Daredevil #1, Daredevil #53, Uncanny Origins #13 and Daredevil: Yellow #2. The exception being the recounting in Daredevil: The Man Without Fear #2. Since the outcomes in any case are basically the same, Matt being in costume or not is all a matter of artistic license and interpretation. Also of note, Daredevil #1 states that Matt and Foggy had already started their law firm Nelson and Murdock at this point. This has now become inconsistent with other re-tellings of Daredevil's origin story.
  8. Although this fact was not established until Daredevil #8, it makes logical sense that Matt had done this from the start once he got his first dwelling in New York City.
  9. Although Mister Fantastic initially bought the Baxter Building circa Fantastic Four #3 after going bankrupt in Fantastic Four #9 he was forced to sell it to Walter Collins who rented it out to the Fantastic Four since then as revealed in Fantastic Four #111
  10. RE:Daredevil: Yellow #3, The events of this story place the Owl hiring Nelson and Murdock in Daredevil #3 as having happened prior to Matt going to inspect the Baxter Building and battling Electro in Daredevil #2.
  11. As revealed in Fantastic Four #39, Matt managed to convince the Fantastic Four to continue to employ his legal services.
  12. RE: Daredevil: Yellow #4: This places this admission as happening before Daredevil's fight with the Owl in Daredevil #3, while an earlier account places this as occurring around the time Daredevil faced the Matador in Daredevil #5
  13. It should be noted here that the hood that Daredevil eventually abandoned the hood in Daredevil #4. This is interesting to note due to the fact that in many of the cross-over and flashback stories that have seen been published and have been identified as happening between these issues neglect to include the hood. This should be viewed merely an oversight on the part of the artists. In reality the hood was merely a one issue gimmick.
  14. As depicted in both Daredevil #3 and Daredevil: Yellow #4. The Owl survived as revealed in Daredevil #20
  15. These damaging news reports from the Daily Bugle resulted from Spider-Man abandoning a fight against the Green Goblin in Amazing Spider-Man #17. Unknown to all was the fact that Peter fled the fight after hearing news that his Aunt May had suffered a heart attack. Spider-Man relatively cleared his name in Amazing Spider-Man #19
  16. Daredevil's trip to Gotham City in the DC Universe was the result of Darkseid's attempt to conquer both Earth-616 and his native universe. Access defeated Darkseid and his allies with the help of the Avengers and the Justice League of America in Unlimited Access #4.
  17. The events of Daredevil: Yellow #6 place the events of this story as happening before the events of Daredevil #4. The story actually fits pretty well here, the only issues being the fact that Daredevil officially stops using his hood in Daredevil #4 and still had the single "D" on the chest of his costume. However, as previously identified in prior footnotes, given the trivial nature of these costume alterations the reader can assume that these are merely aesthetic issues that can easily be ignored.
  18. Daredevil #4 states that he did this with a plastic screen he built into his Billy Club, while Daredevil: Yellow #6 states he accomplished this by wrapping up Killgrave with a storefront awning.
  19. Namor's kingdom was taken over by Warlord Krang. Namor liberated his home in Tales of Suspense #70 through 76
  20. The Enchantress and Executioner were terrorizing Thor's then-lover Jane Foster. Eventually, Thor's ally Balder the Brave rescued her as depicted in Journey into Mystery #117.
  21. The Fantastic Four were stripped of their powers after being exposed by radiation from a Q-Bomb detonated by their foes the Frightful Four in Fantastic Four #38.
  22. Mr. Fantastic developed his re-energizer weapon the first time the Fantastic Four lost their powers while battling the Skrulls in Fantastic Four #32
  23. Stilt Man recovered as seen in Daredevil #26
  24. The Masked Marauder survived as revealed in Iron Man #60, apparently his "disintigrator" force field was really a teleportation device.
  25. The Queega were officially named in Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe #8
  26. Daredevil #33 states that Matt, Foggy Nelson and Karen Page were going to see Expo '67 in Montreal. Expo '67 was the 1967 World's Fair that took place in Montreal, Quebec, Canada from April 27 to October 29, 1967. Per the Sliding Timescale of Earth-616 this should be considered a topical reference relative to the date of publication. As such, the purpose of the trip has been generalized here.
  27. Doctor Doom stole the Power Cosmic from the Silver Surfer in Fantastic Four #58 he was seemingly destroyed in Fantastic Four #60 trying to pierce the barrier put around the Earth by Galactus to punish the Silver Surfer for betraying him back in Fantastic Four #50. It's interesting to note that in this story Doom uses a machine to swap bodies with Daredevil instead of using the technique of body swapping he learned from the Ovoids in Fantastic Four #10
  28. For as sense of perspective, per Marvel Atlas #1, Latveria borders Symkaria, Romania, Serbia and Transylvania, four of these countries are members of the United Nations, as such declaring war against them would have grave repercussions.
  29. Foggy Nelson was both being petitioned to be D.A. again and began seeing Debbie Harris again starting in Daredevil #36.
  30. The Executioner survived, but was displaced in time as seen in Daredevil #113
  31. Richard Raleigh died during a battle between Spider-Man and his creation the Man-Monster in Spectacular Spider-Man Magazine #1.
  32. This story depicts Daredevil appearing on the The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson which was filmed and air from New York City from 1962 to 1972. This should be considered a topical reference relative to the date of publication per the Sliding Timescale of Earth-616.
  33. Daredevil #47 states that Daredevil went to Vietnam to entertain the troops during the Vietnam War. This should be considered a topical reference per the Sliding Timescale of Earth-616. As such, the region where the conflict took place has been generalized.
  34. Only mentioned here, the death of the original Mister Fear was depicted in Daredevil #91. Starr Saxon barely survived and his mind downloaded into a robotic body in Marvel Two-In-One #47

References

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 Daredevil: Battlin' Jack Murdock #1
  2. Daredevil #229
  3. 3.00 3.01 3.02 3.03 3.04 3.05 3.06 3.07 3.08 3.09 3.10 3.11 3.12 3.13 3.14 Daredevil #1
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 4.3 4.4 4.5 4.6 4.7 4.8 4.9 Daredevil: The Man Without Fear #1
  5. 5.0 5.1 5.2 5.3 Daredevil: Battlin' Jack Murdock #2
  6. Daredevil #349
  7. Daredevil #500
  8. Daredevil #226
  9. Daredevil #-1
  10. 10.0 10.1 10.2 Daredevil #168
  11. 11.0 11.1 11.2 11.3 11.4 11.5 11.6 11.7 Daredevil: The Man Without Fear #2
  12. 12.0 12.1 Elektra #-1
  13. 13.0 13.1 13.2 13.3 13.4 Daredevil: The Man Without Fear #3
  14. Daredevil #324
  15. Daredevil Vol 2 #37
  16. 16.0 16.1 16.2 Daredevil: Yellow #1
  17. Daredevil: Battlin' Jack Murdock #3
  18. 18.0 18.1 Daredevil: Battlin' Jack Murdock #4
  19. 19.0 19.1 Daredevil: The Man Without Fear #4
  20. 20.0 20.1 20.2 20.3 Daredevil #53
  21. 21.0 21.1 21.2 21.3 21.4 21.5 Daredevil: Yellow #2
  22. 22.0 22.1 Uncanny Origins #13
  23. Daredevil Vol 2 #66
  24. 24.0 24.1 Daredevil: The Man Without Fear #5
  25. 25.0 25.1 25.2 25.3 25.4 Daredevil #2
  26. Daredevil: Yellow #3
  27. 27.0 27.1 27.2 27.3 27.4 Daredevil #3
  28. 28.0 28.1 28.2 28.3 28.4 28.5 Daredevil: Yellow #4
  29. 29.0 29.1 Daredevil: Yellow #5
  30. 30.0 30.1 Amazing Spider-Man #16
  31. 31.0 31.1 Marvels #2
  32. Amazing Spider-Man #18
  33. Unlimited Access #2
  34. Untold Tales of Spider-Man Annual #1997
  35. Daredevil Father #4
  36. 36.0 36.1 Daredevil #5
  37. 37.0 37.1 37.2 37.3 37.4 Daredevil: Yellow #6
  38. 38.0 38.1 38.2 38.3 38.4 38.5 38.6 Daredevil #4
  39. X-Men #13
  40. 40.0 40.1 Daredevil #7
  41. Daredevil #6
  42. Journey into Mystery #116
  43. Fantastic Four #39
  44. Fantastic Four #40
  45. Daredevil #8
  46. Daredevil #9
  47. 47.0 47.1 Fantastic Four Annual #3
  48. 48.0 48.1 Marvel: Heroes & Legends #1
  49. Daredevil #10
  50. 50.0 50.1 Daredevil #11
  51. Daredevil #12
  52. Daredevil #13
  53. Daredevil #14
  54. Daredevil #15
  55. 55.0 55.1 Daredevil #16
  56. Daredevil #17
  57. Daredevil #18
  58. Daredevil #19
  59. Amazing Spider-Man Annual #3
  60. Daredevil #20
  61. Daredevil #21
  62. Daredevil #22
  63. Daredevil #23
  64. Daredevil #24
  65. 65.0 65.1 Daredevil #25
  66. Daredevil #26
  67. Daredevil #27
  68. Daredevil #28
  69. Daredevil #29
  70. Daredevil #30
  71. Daredevil #31
  72. Daredevil #32
  73. Daredevil #33
  74. Daredevil #34
  75. 75.0 75.1 Daredevil Annual #1
  76. Daredevil #35
  77. Daredevil #36
  78. Daredevil #37
  79. Daredevil #38
  80. Fantastic Four #73
  81. Daredevil #39
  82. 82.0 82.1 Daredevil #41
  83. Daredevil #40
  84. Daredevil #42
  85. Daredevil #43
  86. Daredevil #44
  87. Daredevil #45
  88. Daredevil #46
  89. Avengers #60
  90. Daredevil #47
  91. Daredevil #48
  92. Daredevil #49
  93. Daredevil #50
  94. 94.0 94.1 94.2 Daredevil #51
  95. Daredevil #52
  96. 96.0 96.1 96.2 Daredevil #54
  97. Spider-Man Unlimited #2
  98. Daredevil #55
  99. 99.0 99.1 Daredevil #58
  100. Daredevil #56
  101. Daredevil #57
  102. Daredevil #59