Created by Stan Lee in 1964, Daredevil was really blind attorney, Matt Murdock. When saving an old man from walking in front of a truck carrying radioactive waste, Murdock was clocked between the eyes with the dangerous payload. This robbed him of his sight but gave his remaining senses heightened abilities. This new way of sensing the world could tell him what was around, could read heart beats, and detect signature smells. He used his ‘powers’ to become a vigilante to avenge the death of his father, prize fighter Battlin’ Jack Murdock, and to also rid the streets of his hometown, Hell’s Kitchen, of all undue crime.
Guardian Devil - the Kevin Smith penned run, which regards a child that is the second coming and is suddenly put into the care of Matt Murdock, is a very interesting tale. It features Karen Page and Bullseye and plenty of great moments, but with Mysterio as the main villain it probably won’t be chosen. ‘Nuff said.
Bendis Era - this is magnificent as a whole, with the press outing of Daredevil’s true identity, a few tangential arcs featuring old villains and a strange baby demon, all culminating in The Murdock Papers. This run puts Murdock through the ringer as he constantly dodges the truth of who he is, and also takes time to handle Leland Owsley, Jigsaw, ninjas, and his ex, Typhoid Mary, all while getting married to new flame, Milla Donovan. It’s grand, and we all certainly loved it, mostly, but I could not pick one aspect that should be adapted to the screen. I'd steal his overall vibe, the dialogue and the Maleev visuals, but I wouldn't just steal one of his scripts completely.
Brubaker Era - this is even more continuity heavy with Murdock in jail due to the Bendis run, upon release he jets to Europe, becomes entangled with Vanessa Fisk, is played like a fiddle by Mr Fear, and a legacy character leads Murdock back into the Hand. It’s all a bit end game to base a reboot on, though I'd take elements of the Fear storyline and seed for future use.
Going back there are other interesting stories but nothing that screams to be made directly into a film. And so I think there should be no one Daredevil story scripted, shot, and chopped. David Scarpa should look to take a quality Daredevil villain and craft a new tale with hints to the old works but ultimately it should stand alone. If he’s reading this, here’s one idea.
My Daredevil Plot
Zebediah Killgrave is a Croatian spy who, on one mission at a chemical factory owned by a shadowy and ominous figure, is doused with a chemical that alters him. Not only does it give his entire personage a purple appearance, but it gives him the ability to affect others with his pheromones. He can make people do whatever he wants, and what he wants has been shown to be some sick and twisted business. He becomes a pleasure maniac, and a sadist, and as a movie villain could be an interesting role that offers depth and villainy for the purest reason, old school pleasure.
The Purple Man should come to America to experience the greatest of all pleasures, American life. He's a known figure in the world but no one seems to know exactly how deep his evil runs. Those who ever meet him walk away not exactly sure of what happened, and they never want to talk about it, no matter what happened to them. Killgrave gains attention in NYC but not complete illegal status. Then he is tracked down by an associate from the old country, William Taurens.
Taurens was a travelling Russian peasant in a sideshow. With a strange birth defect he resembled, to a degree, a Man-Bull, and the circus slowly added to his appearance over time, nose-ring, shaggy hair, etc. At his height he believed he was really part bull and eventually killed his troop after Killgrave spent a night with them all to enjoy the delights of the acrobatic Siamese twins and such. Taurens tracks Killgrave down to America and wants his help. Taurens wants to be normal again.
Killgrave acquiesces and gets Taurens the requisite surgery to fix his appearance but he is still unhinged. In his mind he still sees a freak. He’s angry at the world and eventually murders someone. Thus, Daredevil finally has a chance to move in. From there, as they say, hilarity ensues.
On the peripherals of all this, the mysterious chemical magnate should be slowly putting pieces together on the board for a much larger plan. Something that could even pay off in a further film.
Daredevil works best as a character steeped in pulpy noir. The crime he fights should be dark, the movie itself shouldn’t aim for the little teens but rather the later ages that can appreciate a dark tale. This is how Daredevil should be approached.
David Wenham as Matt Murdock/Daredevil
On Twitter, Andy Diggle asked his followers who they thought should fill the red horns and many seemed to think that Michael C. Hall (Dexter) would be a good choice. I’m not convinced but it would be better than worse. At least he’s a good actor. And has a good range.
Bradley Cooper as Zebediah Killgrave
Josh Holloway as William Taurens
Rachel McAdams as Karen Page
Jack Black as Foggy Nelson
Liev Schreiber as Mr Fear
Any good Marvel flick has some cameos so why not throw Stan Lee as a pro bono client in the offices of Nelson and Murdock? Maybe have a new intern start, a Miss Blake in a wheelchair, because Murdock doesn’t shy away from hiring those with other abilities. And at the end, have a certain character hit the target in the centre and reveal Jason Statham.
Directed by David Fincher
Because a man can dream, can’t he? Or, much like Sam Raimi, you could pluck Don Coscarelli from very well directed and inventive horror obscurity and throw a stack of cash at him. See what comes out the other side…
At the moment we only have a writer and some intentions for Daredevil, that’s all. Who knows what will happen from here though with an arachnid reboot, a man of iron coming soon, a first avenger heralding the way for the others, an Asgardian god, not to mention a constant want of a third cowled crusader, I’d place relatively good odds on this going ahead. Let’s just hope the odds are as positive for it actually being a decent flick as well.
What do you think? Is a reboot of Daredevil pointless? Are you excited at the news? Who would you cast in the eponymous horns?