|DD by Alex Maleev|
|Yes...DD originally wore yellow!|
Faced with declining sales during the 70s, DD was on the verge of being canceled when Frank Miller joined the team as artist. Shortly after being handed the writer job too, Miller embarked on turning the "sightless swashbuckler" into a dark anti-hero.
Roger McKenzie was the first writer to bring the dark tone to Daredevil, but Miller intended to push the character further than many were comfortable with. Original fans were disappointed in the new direction, but new fans came in droves.
|Much coveted DD vol. 1 #181 - The "death" of Elektra|
Miller's reinvention of Matt Murdock included many new elements: Stick (blind mentor), The Hand (ninjas), Kingpin becoming Daredevil's main nemesis, and introducing the iconic character of Elektra. Many of the themes and characters introduced by Miller have been used to great effect in the Netflix television series of Daredevil.
Miller later paired up with artist David Mazzucchelli to create one of the most widely acclaimed storylines in all of comic books: Born Again. In this story arc, Daredevil's secret identity is made known to the Kingpin who then slowly dismantles Matt Murdock's life. It became the story by which all other Daredevil writers were gauged. Miller left Daredevil at the end of Born Again.
|Opening page to vol. 1 #230 - "Born Again"|
Several acclaimed writers and artists followed Miller on the book, among them Ann Nocenti who I blogged about last year: Comic Book Chaos #2, Kevin Smith (the movie director) and Brian Michael Bendis.
Bendis is now a well known name in comics, but at the time of taking over Daredevil he was new to the Marvel Universe, having come over from indie comic books. His success on writing Ultimate Spider-man in 2000 (part of a whole new line-up of rebooted Marvel titles) got him hired on as regular writer on Daredevil.
|vol 2 #32 - Bendis/Maleev|
|Alex Maleev's dark and gritty art was a perfect fit for DD|
Daredevil is still protecting Hell's Kitchen, both in comics and on the television. Season 2 of Daredevil debuted recently on Netflix and Volume 5 of the ongoing adventures of Daredevil is available at all good comic book stores.
|Vol 5 #1 by Charles Soule/Ron Garney|