Daredevil Message Board
The Board Without Fear!
 
 FAQFAQ   SearchSearch   MemberlistMemberlist   UsergroupsUsergroups   RegisterRegister 
 ProfileProfile   Log in to check your private messagesLog in to check your private messages   Log inLog in 


DD Book Club - Golden Age
Goto page 1, 2  Next
 
Post new topic   Reply to topic    Daredevil Message Board Forum Index -> The comics
View previous topic :: View next topic  
Author Message
Mike Murdock
Wake Up


Joined: 08 Sep 2014
Posts: 1295

PostPosted: Sun Jul 07, 2019 8:17 am    Post subject: DD Book Club - Golden Age Reply with quote

Continuing with Bendis. I skipped #65 because it's basically a recap issue.

Daredevil Vol. 2 #66 - Golden Age Part One



Quote:
Leaping off the pages of last month’s anniversary special, we follow Matt Murdock through a story that literally spans the entire history of Marvel. Who was the Kingpin before the Kingpin and what was his relationship to Matt Murduck?


Due 7/13
_________________
Matt Murdock's cooler twin brother

Not sure what to read next? Check out the Book Club for some ideas!

I'd give the Devil benefit of law, for my own safety's sake!
Thomas More - A Man for All Seasons
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Dimetre
Paradiso


Joined: 16 Feb 2006
Posts: 1093
Location: Toronto

PostPosted: Sun Jul 07, 2019 3:56 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

It's obvious to me that Brian Michael Bendis loves The Godfather. His "Underboss" arc features such phrases as "Cosa Nostra" and "the families" but this issue makes the parallels to Mario Puzo and Francis Ford Coppola's films even more overt. The elder Bont is drawn to resemble Robert Duvall, and another character looks like Marlon Brando. I'm fine with that this time around, since much of Bont's story predates Fisk who, to me, is nothing like the Corleone family. Judging from this single issue, which I've never read before, this arc is going to be more about crime in New York than it will be about Daredevil, and that's not the worst idea.

The story unfolds slowly, as Bendis stories do. Bont gets out of a cab and thinks back to a long ago memory from the era of World War II. He becomes a big shot in crime, and stays on top long enough to run afoul of a young Daredevil clad in yellow. It turns out that the Fixer had to pay up to Bont. We don't actually see how Matt proved that to the cops, but he did, and he's the one who ended Bont's crime career. I suppose that created a vacuum into which Wilson Fisk stepped.

I thought this issue did a good job of explaining Bont's background in a single issue, which is something I didn't expect Bendis to pull off. It's a good set up, done in a stylish way with an economical use of dialogue. I give this a four out of five.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Visit poster's website
Mike Murdock
Wake Up


Joined: 08 Sep 2014
Posts: 1295

PostPosted: Mon Jul 08, 2019 6:35 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The gimmick of this issue of having the art mirror the various styles it's in is pretty good. It's basically The Godfather Part II with Superheroes in it. My Golden Age comic experience is very limited, but I was recently re-reading the original Captain America Comics. Does this feel like that? Maybe a little, but not much The idea of meeting Germans in shady backrooms in New York felt very much the same. Honestly, the Silver Age Daredevil is the one that feels less true to the source. It also seems a somewhat stupid reason to blame Daredevil since the FBI likely would have struck either way.

The effect on someone leaving prison after losing most of their life is a pretty powerful one, though. I can see why you would be bitter at the life lost - especially when he visits his wife's tombstone. Obviously, don't think too much about the timeline of things or else it won't make any sense. Unfortunately, any sympathy I would have seemed to go away in the last two pages.

My biggest complaint is the rushed nature of the ending. It's sometimes hard to imagine I read an entire comic considering how quick the whole thing seemed. And, whatever was in the rest of the pages, maybe some room could have been spared for the ending. But that is pretty much Bendis's style for a sudden and shocking cliffhanger.

Four Stars.
_________________
Matt Murdock's cooler twin brother

Not sure what to read next? Check out the Book Club for some ideas!

I'd give the Devil benefit of law, for my own safety's sake!
Thomas More - A Man for All Seasons
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Mike Murdock
Wake Up


Joined: 08 Sep 2014
Posts: 1295

PostPosted: Sun Jul 14, 2019 8:47 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

If anyone wants to jump in, feel free to give your thoughts on either the first or second issue. Also, if you only have quick thoughts, that's cool too.

Daredevil Vol. 2 #67 - Golden Age Part Two



Quote:
As if Daredevil's present wasn't bad enough, Daredevil's past now comes back to haunt him in a big way.

In Golden Age, learn who was kingpin before The Kingpin. And what does he have to do with the legend of the White Tiger?

Spanning the history of Marvel Comics, join the Eisner-nominated Bendis & Maleev for a 40th Anniversary celebration like no other!


Due 7/20
_________________
Matt Murdock's cooler twin brother

Not sure what to read next? Check out the Book Club for some ideas!

I'd give the Devil benefit of law, for my own safety's sake!
Thomas More - A Man for All Seasons
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Dimetre
Paradiso


Joined: 16 Feb 2006
Posts: 1093
Location: Toronto

PostPosted: Sun Jul 14, 2019 6:31 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The previous issue concluded with Bont murdering someone. This issue opens with Matt, with his shirt unbuttoned and displaying his Daredevil costume underneath, chained up and being beaten by Melvin Potter in his Gladiator duds. It's all very confusing. How did we get here?

Bendis is known for telling a story purposely out of chronological order. He did so with "Underboss," and as those of us in the Book Club figured out, the choice to tell that story out of order was a cheap way to disguise how simplistic that story was. I'm worried that is what's going to happen with Golden Age. However, I kind of like Bont so far. I also like Vito Corleone, and obviously those two characters are very similar.

Bendis is also known for completely disregarding continuity, and I think this issue is Exhibit A. While I like that the black and white pages represent the Golden Age (World War II), and that the pages with the Ben-Day dots represent the early period of Daredevil's career (his yellow period), I'm afraid that I just know too much to be able to freely accept the story Bendis and Maleev are trying to tell. The big problem is the depiction of Melvin. He didn't become the Gladiator until Daredevil #18, twelve issues after Daredevil's last adventure in yellow. For well over a decade Melvin was one of Matt's most irredeemable and dangerous villains, yet Bendis shows Melvin to not only have a long history with Daredevil at this time, but also trying to rehabilitate himself. It just doesn't match up with what I know about Daredevil and his supporting cast at all, and that's a big problem for me.

I don't know why Bendis wouldn't use one of the villains from the first six issues of Daredevil. That would make more sense. Why not have Bont confront Electro or the Matador? Or the Owl? Or one of the Enforcers?

Another big problem for me was the incorrect blades on Melvin's wrists. Instead of drawing circular saw blades, Alex Maleev draws a spinning dagger? Why is he doing this? Does he think it's correct? Or is he like Bendis, and he doesn't care if it's right or not -- it's what he wants to do.

All these little things serve as distractions for me, and prevent me from enjoying what may be a pretty good story. These distractions don't have to be here. I see other choices that Bendis and Maleev could have made that would have been less distracting.

For the most part, I don't mind the story. Bont is a compelling enough character on which to centre this narrative. I'm assuming he heard the news that Matt is Daredevil, and that's why he returned to the kitchen -- to kill him. I would rather know how he captured Matt at the top of this issue, but I assume Bendis will eventually tell us.

As for the World War II era scene with the Defender -- I had never heard of that character before. A quick Google search showed that this character indeed existed, appearing in U.S.A. Comics and The Twelve. He fought enemy forces in Europe and Central America, so it seems odd (and a little disrespectful) to show this character meeting his end by having a lowly gangster get the drop on him and shoot him in the back of the head. I suppose it made Bont look big to the rest of the criminal underworld, but it's sad that it came at the expense of a historic character like the Defender. It comes off as a bit gratuitous. The Defender shows up out of nowhere and gets offed very quickly.

Normally I complain about Bendis' pacing, but I don't find it too bad so far in "Golden Age." My big problems here are with the choices he and Maleev are making. Why start the issue with Matt already captive, and not show us how that happened? Why use Melvin as Bont's accomplice, and not someone from the actual period to which you're referring? Why change Melvin's blade?

I give this a 2.5 out of 5.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Visit poster's website
Mike Murdock
Wake Up


Joined: 08 Sep 2014
Posts: 1295

PostPosted: Mon Jul 15, 2019 6:21 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The continuity of this issue kind of bothers me. Gladiator wasn't really involved with Daredevil back when DD wore yellow and Melvin wasn't afraid to commit crimes. He was very much an aggressive fighter at this point. Now, maybe with the advantage of hindsight (i.e., Frank Miller's retcon), we can say that maybe he was having a rare lucid moment of timidity and, in fairness, he doesn't actually help Bont in the flashback.

The golden age stuff is probably the most interesting. It's very much a Bendis twist on a Golden Age hero. The hero, of course, loses to a random fluke and dies in a way that I don't think would have happened. The modern stuff is not really worth talking about. Maybe next issue will fill in the gaps between 66 and 67. Otherwise, it's all pretty loosely told.

Three Stars. Honestly, not much happened.
_________________
Matt Murdock's cooler twin brother

Not sure what to read next? Check out the Book Club for some ideas!

I'd give the Devil benefit of law, for my own safety's sake!
Thomas More - A Man for All Seasons
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Dimetre
Paradiso


Joined: 16 Feb 2006
Posts: 1093
Location: Toronto

PostPosted: Mon Jul 15, 2019 6:59 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I don't know what you think of the way this arc was solicited.
Quote:
Who was the Kingpin before the Kingpin and what was his relationship to Matt Murduck?

That isn't a question being posed in the comic itself -- yet. I have had issues with the idea of Matt taking the Kingpin title and imposing it on himself, as if he is being what Wilson Fisk once was. To me, Wilson Fisk was a completely original gangster, operating the mobs with corporate efficiency. He does it purely for his own gain, and has no loyalty to anyone else in his organization. When Vanessa showed up, that was the only reason he returned to his position as the Kingpin. He is leagues above legendary gangsters like Al Capone, Bugsy Siegel or the Owl.

So the idea that there was a Kingpin before Fisk seems to betray a misunderstanding of what Fisk represents to the criminal underworld. Only Fisk can do what he does. At least that's how I see it. To me, having only read the first two issues of "Golden Age," Bont is someone who achieved prominence in the underworld by being lucky enough to get the drop on the Defender. He must have done something right to hold on to power for as long as he did, but he so far hasn't shown the criminal genius and cunning that we've seen from Fisk.

So to the question posed in the solicit irks me. Wilson Fisk will, to me, always be the only Kingpin, and the title isn't transferable.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Visit poster's website
Mike Murdock
Wake Up


Joined: 08 Sep 2014
Posts: 1295

PostPosted: Sun Jul 21, 2019 8:02 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Daredevil Vol. 2 #68 - Golden Age Part Three



Quote:

The epic Daredevil anniversary storyline continues, traversing three different eras in Daredevil's life.

As Matt Murdock's past catches up with him, the original Kingpin is there to deal the punishment!

Featuring stunning artwork by Alex Maleev in a style you've never seen before!


Due 7/27
_________________
Matt Murdock's cooler twin brother

Not sure what to read next? Check out the Book Club for some ideas!

I'd give the Devil benefit of law, for my own safety's sake!
Thomas More - A Man for All Seasons
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Dimetre
Paradiso


Joined: 16 Feb 2006
Posts: 1093
Location: Toronto

PostPosted: Sun Jul 21, 2019 3:25 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I didn't get much out of this issue.

The previous issue left off with Matt in captivity by Bont and the Gladiator. This issue finishes with Matt in captivity by Bont and the Gladiator. Otherwise, we get a scene showing some history with Bont, Gladiator and Daredevil. There's a scene from "yesterday" with Matt and Agent Del Toro, preceded by some comic banter between Matt and Foggy. We also have a double-page spread recapping Bont's murder of the Defender during the Second World War. That's it.

My least favourite thing about this issue is how stiff Alex Maleev's art is during the Silver Age fight between Daredevil and the Gladiator. He spends two pages showing the two trading blows, while Bendis has them spout nonsense like "Ha!" and "Argh!" It's okay to have dialogue-free fight panels, you know. Those panels didn't work because I felt no intensity coming off the characters. I didn't know why they were fighting. I didn't feel like this fight meant anything. I didn't know why they were angry at each other, or how angry at each other they were. Neither of their faces showed any emotion. It was a completely ineffective fight sequence, seemingly here for no reason other than to fill out pages.

Bendis and Maleev spend three pages on Foggy and Matt talking about Agent Del Toro watching them from across the street. It is perfectly okay to use Foggy as comic relief; he has served that role well for decades, but a little goes a long way. This banter isn't bad, but even a page of it is a lot. Bendis has no sense of economy. It seems to me that it has come from on high that "Golden Age" has to be four issues long, and he now has to do some serious padding to meet that length. It's like a high school senior adding a lot of verys and reallys to hit the required word count on their essay.

The sudden revelation that Agent Del Toro is related to the late Hector Ayala seems awfully convenient. We now know that Matt is going to be captured by Bont and the Gladiator the next day, so it's obvious to me that she is going to use the powers of the White Tiger to rescue Matt. Bendis couldn't have done more to telegraph this story's ending, and I have never read "Golden Age" before.

"Golden Age" is yet another example of Bendis playing with the chronology of a story for no other reason than to hide how unspectacular his story really is if he doesn't do that. Seriously though, I couldn't find anything in this issue that moved me in any way. Perhaps that one page when Matt goes inside his brownstone and Del Toro follows had a nice noir mood, but that was it.

This may seem harsh, but there aren't many Daredevil issues in this character's 55-year history that are less essential. I give this a one out of five.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Visit poster's website
Mike Murdock
Wake Up


Joined: 08 Sep 2014
Posts: 1295

PostPosted: Mon Jul 22, 2019 6:27 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I feel a little bad that I'm usually a little less positive on Bendis and how he structures his comics, but I will say that I couldn't remember which issue to read at first and accidentally turned to the last page of this issue. I was confused since it felt like it was the same thing as the last page of last issue. That being said, I don't think this story is about the present day anywhere near as much as it's about the past. Maybe it's more about the recent past this time.

There are two opening scenes in flashback that Bendis seems to be tying together: the death of the Defender and the death of the White Tiger. Both were fairly obsolete heroes by the time they died and their deaths were fairly random and pointless all things considered. The connection seems to be somewhat lost after that.

It's a good excuse to continue the story of Detective Del Toro. Unfortunately, it's just a start. I really like the start. She's in about as hypocritical a position as you can imagine seeking out Matt for help, but she's also having a complete crisis of conscience and needs guidance. I'd have loved to read more of that, but then the story ends.

I have to give this Two and a Half Stars. There's just not a lot of substance here. I can't imagine buying this comic monthly. It only works if read all at once and, even then, it's very repetitive.
_________________
Matt Murdock's cooler twin brother

Not sure what to read next? Check out the Book Club for some ideas!

I'd give the Devil benefit of law, for my own safety's sake!
Thomas More - A Man for All Seasons
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Display posts from previous:   
Post new topic   Reply to topic    Daredevil Message Board Forum Index -> The comics All times are GMT - 4 Hours
Goto page 1, 2  Next
Page 1 of 2

 
Jump to:  
You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot vote in polls in this forum


Powered by phpBB © phpBB Group