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 - The Devil's Hand

 
Post new topic   Reply to topic    Daredevil Message Board Forum Index -> The comics
View previous topic :: View next topic  
Author Message
Mike Murdock
Hardcore


Joined: 08 Sep 2014
Posts: 1567

PostPosted: Sun Aug 01, 2021 5:11 pm    Post subject: DD Book Club - The Devil's Hand Reply with quote

I still haven't decided how far into Andy Diggle's run I'm prepared to go, but I thought it would be worth continuing a bit longer.

Daredevil Vol. 2 #501 - The Devil's Hand, Part One

Quote:

Meet Daredevil as you’ve NEVER seen him before! The cataclysmic events of issue 500 left Matt in the toughest place of his life – and forced him to make the hardest decision he’s ever made. Now’s the start of a radically different chapter in Daredevil’s adventures, and the perfect jumping-on point as the new creative team of Andy Diggle (THUNDERBOLTS) and Roberto De La Torre (IRON MAN) take DD to entirely new highs…and lows!


Due 8/6
_________________
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
Wake Up


Joined: 16 Feb 2006
Posts: 1262
Location: Toronto

PostPosted: Tue Aug 03, 2021 2:19 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'll begin by complimenting artist Roberto De La Torre. He was a very worthy successor to Michael Lark -- capable of a high level of detail while retaining the grittiness that Hell's Kitchen needs.

Writer Andy Diggle's first issue of the main series is fine. I think the scenes go on a little longer than they need to, and the dialogue could be trimmed by a lot, but otherwise they're fine. Diggle had a tough act to follow; Ed Brubaker is still my favourite comic book writer of all-time, even if Daredevil wasn't his best work..

Back in the day I was very bothered by the entire premise of this story. I thought Daredevil would never be so stupid or naive to assume leadership of the Hand. I still think that, but now I feel that, in looking back and assessing this story, I can accept that the decision was made by the creative team to go this way. Now I have to just evaluate how the story was carried out.

I think, under Diggle's pen, Daredevil's broodiness tips over too much into whiny territory. His passiveness as the Hand attacks Izo can be seen as out of character, but Daredevil had displayed similar passiveness previously during Bendis and Brubaker's runs.

The next seen has Foggy whining about how what's happening is actually his fault. It's a lot to confront two grown men cocooning in their security blankets whining about how much things suck. At least Daredevil is doing what he thinks must be done, misguided as it is.

I think the Kingpin scene proved to be a true step down for Lady Bullseye. Marvel introduced her with an enormous fanfare, and now she's relegated to being a Kingpin underling on the same level as Turk.

The final scene with Izo in chains recycles a lot of the chatter that began this issue, and it goes on way too long. Daredevil is ordered to kill Izo, and what follows is too easy to disbelieve. Daredevil punches him very hard, and Izo flies back into a wall. A Hand ninja checks on Izo and pronounces him dead, and the ninja all bow to "Lord Daredevil." It's obvious that Izo's death is going to prove faked. Who fell for this?

I thought Dark Reign was one of the best Marvel-wide crossovers in a long, long time. As a premise it may have been hard to accept that Tony Stark would trust Norman Osborn with running things, but it provided very worthy conundrums for a lot of heroes throughout the line. If Marvel was going to push Daredevil in this direction, whether I liked it or not (and I didn't), at least the threat posed by Osborn was a solid motivation for Matt's actions.

On a personal note, I thought the opening scene with the church service was very powerful. As someone who has lost family in ways that make no sense to me on a religious level, the priest's dialogue hit hard. It was a bold choice by Diggle and De La Torre.

So, this wasn't a bad way for them to start. I miss Brubaker and Lark's more economical instincts when it comes to laying out scenes and pages, and I would like Matt to act more nobly, but if this was what was decided, this is fine. I give this a 3.5 out of 5.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Visit poster's website
Mike Murdock
Hardcore


Joined: 08 Sep 2014
Posts: 1567

PostPosted: Wed Aug 04, 2021 7:38 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The issue starts by doing a good job setting the stakes. This is a world turned upside down. Norman Osborne controls everything and justice can't be found either in the courts or conventional superheroics. The corrupt system aspect is why the Kingpin always made an effective villain - he couldn't be attacked through legal means. This led to the idea of whether Matt's faith in the legal system was justified. On top of that, Matt is obviously in a bad psychological state - although, at this point, that's a well-worn card since he hasn't been in a good psychological state since Karen Page died if we're going by what everyone has written. Finally, there's the idea of temptation - that the Hand is just a weapon to be used. Matt feels guilt for failure to stop Bullseye and feels he has a way to fix everything. It's all interesting themes. It's just a question of how it plays out - how far can they push the character without ruining what makes the character great.

The ending would be the big shock. I think at the time, I was sickened and saddened. It would clearly be a line too far. Matt killing someone solely for the greater good. With a re-read knowing where this goes, I don't really have an emotional reaction at all. Part of it is I didn't find Izo all that interesting this time through. Part of it is just knowing what's up ahead so I'm not so surprised by it all.

Four Stars. I think the issue starts really strong with the funeral and the moral dilemmas, but it ends very weakly.
_________________
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
Hardcore


Joined: 08 Sep 2014
Posts: 1567

PostPosted: Mon Aug 09, 2021 6:37 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Sorry for the delay.

Daredevil Vol. 2 #502 - The Devil's Hand, Part Two

Quote:
Matt Murdock's spiral of self-destruction spins out of control and threatens to consume everybody! After painting a target on his own back in Daredevil # 500, Matt's got dozens of new enemies...including some old foes and familiar faces! The scorching new arc by the creative team of Andy Diggle (THUNDERBOLTS) and Roberto De La Torre (IRON MAN) intensifies...now's the time to jump on!


Due 8/14
_________________
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
Hardcore


Joined: 08 Sep 2014
Posts: 1567

PostPosted: Wed Aug 11, 2021 7:00 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

There's a quick opening scene with the Owl that doesn't contribute much before a dream sequence that honestly should be the opening. It also doesn't contribute much, but I like that it's showing Matt's psyche (it actually reminds me of one of Nocenti's issues). I do like that Matt can still see in his dreams. That's a nice attention to detail, although he wouldn't be able to see people he's never physically seen before.

When Matt wakes up and reveals that Izo is still alive. Not a very long fakeout.

The "people question Fisk to his face and one of them dies" trope has been very played out by this point.

The main thrust of this issue continues the Norman Osborn ruins everything train, a Judge is overruling a jury to convict a defendant. I would definitely be upset by something so blatantly unconstitutional and maybe I'd get held in contempt too. I would hope that it wouldn't stand on appeal, but that doesn't mean the client wouldn't suffer in the meantime. We also see that the police are blatantly, terribly corrupt. So much so that you definitely appreciate Daredevil intervening. I would argue it's even a cool moment to see Daredevil and the Hand intervening. I think Diggle does a good job so far at selling the stakes of Matt working with the Hand.

Four Stars. I like the Osborn stuff quite a bit.
_________________
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
Wake Up


Joined: 16 Feb 2006
Posts: 1262
Location: Toronto

PostPosted: Thu Aug 12, 2021 2:58 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Another fine issue. Not great, but fine.

Roberto De La Torre provides more top-notch art. The plot moves along nicely from scene to scene. It does a good job telling the story it wants to tell. I just don't think the story moved forward very much at all.

In this issue the Owl's underlings move over to working for the Kingpin. A judge overrules a jury's not-guilty verdict. Izo is revealed to be alive, which shouldn't be a surprise to any readers out there. There is yet more emphasis about how far-reaching Norman Osborn's corruption pervades throughout society, but even typing that betrays how that was present in the previous issue.

The opening scene with the Owl just makes me sad. The Owl was portrayed as a loser all throughout Volume 2 -- never much of a threat at all. I don't like Daredevil's antagonists portrayed as losers. I'd rather they challenge him, and show themselves to be as dangerous as possible.

De La Torre does a great job with the dream sequence. My only problem is why are only Matt's female love interests pointing out how he's losing control of himself?

As I pointed out earlier, Izo's survival is the least surprising thing in this whole story. It's pathetic that the Hand bought the ruse. Four pages are dedicated to the reveal of Izo being alive, and that's too much. I did like that Black Tarantula's healing factor helps him overcome the Hand's conditioning, but how is White Tiger able to overcome it?

The panel at the end of the court scene with one guy asking another "What, uh... what just happened" seems like a waste of space. Who are these guys? Is this just a lame attempt by Andy Diggle to button the scene? What was so hard for this guy to understand about what just happened?

Lady Bullseye's relegation to being Lady Bullseye's henchwoman continues to be a waste of her character. I agree that this type of Kingpin scene has been done many times, but I thought it was laid out well, and it had an impact on me.

The final scene at Oscorp cargo dock should have been condensed a lot, because none of us know any of these characters. These are generic drug runners and dirty cops, but we spend four pages with them until the big cliffhanger. This scene really dragged for me until the disappearance of the cop's hand.

As I typed, the issue has forward momentum going before that cargo dock scene. I have issues of varying size with all the scenes, but most of them aren't much bigger than quibbles. I actually liked the court scene the best out of everything. But the issue is weighed down by the lameness of the Izo reveal and the amount of time given to the dirty cops and drug runners. I'm giving this a three out of five.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Visit poster's website
Mike Murdock
Hardcore


Joined: 08 Sep 2014
Posts: 1567

PostPosted: Fri Aug 13, 2021 7:06 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

You know, I thought I remembered White Tiger being cured, but since I can't remember how, I have no idea. I was going to suggest that Izo had something to do with it, but I'm not sure.
_________________
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
Hardcore


Joined: 08 Sep 2014
Posts: 1567

PostPosted: Sun Aug 15, 2021 5:31 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Daredevil Vol. 2 #503 - The Devil's Hand, Part Three

Quote:
It's blood, sweat, and brutal truths as the new creative team of Andy Diggle (THUNDERBOLTS) and Roberto De La Torre (IRON MAN) continue their first breathtaking story arc! While the Kingpin secretly builds his power base, Daredevil and Master Izo collide violently over the furure of the guild of assassins known as the Hand, and Foggy fears the Matt Murdock he once knew may be gone for good.


Due 8/21
_________________
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


Last edited by Mike Murdock on Wed Aug 18, 2021 7:27 am; edited 1 time in total
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Dimetre
Wake Up


Joined: 16 Feb 2006
Posts: 1262
Location: Toronto

PostPosted: Tue Aug 17, 2021 9:28 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

This issue sees Roberto De La Torre splitting art duties with one Marco Checchetto. This seems to be Checchetto's Daredevil debut, and it's eleven years ago (at the time I'm typing this). Both artists provide fantastic work in this issue, but in much different ways. De La Torre's opening scene showing Daredevil taking down the corrupt cops is breathtaking. The action flows beautifully from panel to panel. Checchetto's scenes are more conversational. Becky and Dakota are both drawn to be gorgeous, and Checchetto gives you a lot of tilted angels and details like clothing folds and tousled hairs to immerse yourself into.

Once again we're given a scene where we don't know any of the characters, and we're asked to care. Two thirds of the way into this issue comes a scene that takes place in "Lower Manhattan." A bus full of prisoners originally bound for Rykers is being rerouted. The bus pulls into some yard, and some guy named Todd Mosley pays off a guard. The guards get slaughtered and Mosley tells the prisoners they're now working for the Hood, who I've never found compelling in any way. This was the weakest scene in the issue. I don't know why we couldn't have been introduced to Mosley earlier so we could have been invested somewhat. At least in the next scene we're let in that the Kingpin is behind the scheme to tell the prisoners they're working for the Hood, because he's trying to figure out why Osborn is allowing the Hood to operate with impunity. Both of those scenes were three pages long, taking up six pages in total, and the whole scheme is very convoluted.

The final scene just highlights how naive Matt is in thinking he can control the Hand, and I don't like seeing Matt like that. It just speaks to my larger problems with this whole Hand story.

Checchetto and De La Torre are the major draws to this issue, both providing gorgeous art. I like the scenes with Black Tarantula and White Tiger, and the scene at Nelson, Murdock and Blake is fun. Otherwise writer Andy Diggle is rehashing his older Matt and Izo scenes, and Kingpin's scheme needs to be tightened up a whole lot. I give this a three out of five, mainly for the art.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Visit poster's website
Mike Murdock
Hardcore


Joined: 08 Sep 2014
Posts: 1567

PostPosted: Wed Aug 18, 2021 7:25 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

^ I thought I recognized Checchetto, but I didn't go back to check.

Daredevil has a choice about just how violent he wants the Hand to be. The whole idea is whether a violent organization can lead to lines crossed. This hints at that, but doesn't reveal what happened to the police officers. Daredevil is still not advocating for loss of life, but he doesn't seem interested in destroying the Hand anymore.

Meanwhile, there is a clear conspiracy to attack Nelson and Murdock with Nelson being disbarred and Dakota losing her investigator's license. I don't think what happened last time would be as dramatic as a disbarral, but the story presents it as something out of the ordinary anyway so that makes sense.

The Kingpin's subplot is a bit confusing because he's playing identity games, pretending to be the Owl and the Hood. It makes it a bit unclear when the Hood is acting for real. That being said, since the Hood seems to be working with Norman Osborn, Fisk is seemingly working at the same goal as Matt.

There's a lot of bouncing back and forth and only a little plot development here. I wish they took a bit more time with each plot, but I'll still give it 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
Hardcore


Joined: 08 Sep 2014
Posts: 1567

PostPosted: Sun Aug 22, 2021 7:21 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Daredevil Vol. 2 #504 - The Devil's Hand, Part Four

Quote:

The first story arc from the creative team of Andy Diggle and Roberto De La Torre reaches its shattering climax. Backed-up by the ruthlessly loyal ninja army known as The Hand, Daredevil declares war on a murderous cadre of dirty NYPD cops -- and Hell's Kitchen is the battleground! But can Foggy Nelson and Dakota North find out who's really behind the recent spiral of violence before the city burns?


Due 8/28
_________________
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
Wake Up


Joined: 16 Feb 2006
Posts: 1262
Location: Toronto

PostPosted: Sun Aug 22, 2021 12:42 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

This issue, for what it is, isn't bad. Matt has been in a mental descent throughout Volume 2, so it can be argued that writer Andy Diggle is just continuing that trajectory. My problem is that I'm tired of that trajectory. It seems to me that Matt has badly lost the plot by this point. He is so rattled from losing everything that he is clinging to this idea that the Hand can give his life purpose, and that is shockingly naive.

I think Diggle's story would be improved if he had given Detective Kurtz and Judge Kramer larger roles in the narrative. That way we would care more when their scenes show up. At least Dakota and Foggy are there in the Kramer scene. I also think some of these scenes could easily be cut down to a single page to make them drag less. For sure the Kingpin's scene could be cut in half, because the only purpose it serves is to send Lady Bullseye into action, and she continues to be nothing more than Fisk's latest underling, a role I don't think she'd be willing to serve.

These four issues moved very slowly, and now H.A.M.M.E.R.'s move against the Hand is all crammed into the last two-thirds of this issue. You'd think they'd want to show all of this, but instead we get a half-page panel of Daredevil leaping into the fray with a horde of Hand ninja behind him, and the next page brings us the aftermath of the battle. It's not very satisfying.

It also seems like a bad idea to yank Daredevil out of New York at this point for him to deal with Hand business in Japan. Ideally he should be set for a showdown with Osborn and Bullseye, but Marvel had Osborn all busy with Dark Reign and Siege at this point, and Daredevil wasn't his main preoccupation. Bullseye would be dealt with shortly in Shadowland.

I think this story has problems, and I think Diggle could have been a more economical writer to give this story more punch. But I don't think it's bad. I give it and the entire arc a three out of five.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Visit poster's website
Mike Murdock
Hardcore


Joined: 08 Sep 2014
Posts: 1567

PostPosted: Wed Aug 25, 2021 7:11 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

This is a lot of bouncing plots that never really seem to add up to a whole. This is theoretically the end of a story arc (although, to be fair, the trade doesn't really even seem to pretend this is the end of anything). The Kingpin is stirring things up, Daredevil is angry and shouty (I seriously can't picture his dialogue without spit coming out of his mouth). Foggy and Dakota are threatening the Judge that disbarred them. Probably the most shocking thing is the ending and seeing the troops there. But this story does sort of just seem to drag.

Three and a Half 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
Display posts from previous:   
Post new topic   Reply to topic    Daredevil Message Board Forum Index -> The comics All times are GMT - 4 Hours
Page 1 of 1

 
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