I was sure I'd seen the first issue of the Daredevil relaunch listed as being out next week, and so I thought it was one of the few books my comics guy missed sending in this package. But now Daredevil #1 was in this week's list of releases, so I guess not. Either way, today I'm concerning myself with the end of the previous volume.
Daredevil #35 & 36, by Chris Samnee & Mark Waid (storytellers), Javier Rodriguez (colorist), Joe Caramagna (letterer) - Up to this point, Rodriguez has been listed as responsible for "color art", at least in the issues he doesn't also draw. Now they shift it to "colorist". No idea if that's significant. Also, I love that cover. The washed out reds, changing the tag line over the title to "There Goes" instead "Here Comes", the drops falling from the direction of the viewer, dragging us into the scene.
The Sons of the Serpent are fed up with Daredevil messing with their business. By apparently drugging Foggy, they've gotten all inds of details about Murdock/Daredevil, and they'll release them all. . . unless Matt defends one of the guys' sons, who is also a Serpent, and is about to go to jail for burning down an apartment building full of people. Except he didn't actually do it. After a conversation with Elektra, and a fight with a couple of members of the Serpent Society, Matt decides on a course of action. He names Kirsten as his co-counsel, has her call him to the stand, and immediately announces he's Daredevil. Which is his way of announcing he's not playing Oglivy's game, by unmaking the dagger they had poised at his throat. Oglivy, in a panic, or a fury, calls in a strike team on the courtroom, right as Matt realizes the judge presiding is the one who actually burned the place down, and hired the Serpent Society members. The goons are easily dispatched, the judge is arrested, Matt and Foggy (I think) are both disbarred, but Kirsten points out Matt might be able to practice law in a place he lived previously, like San Francisco.
The ending is pretty good, as far as it goes. The thing with the Serpents is vaguely unsatisfying, but I think that's because we know Matt only started the process of cleaning things up, and it's something that will have to be carried on by other people, because Daredevil can't punch institutionalized racism. Which is probably why there have so many non-vigilante folks factoring into things. The poor EMT Matt had to protect in the courthouse when all this started, Kirsten and her speech to the people of the New York, the panels of all those people in the courthouse standing up and having to be forced out of the way by the strike team. They (or we) are the ones who have to fix things.
I like how, as Matt laid out his plan to Foggy at the start of #36, there's a silent panel where we view the two of them through the outlines of all the machines Foggy's hooked up to. That quiet reminder of what's looming over them, the fact that Matt's plan is going to severely reduce the resources Foggy has to treat his cancer. Also, on the page where all the other heroes react to Matt's admission, the fact that Hawkeye is beat to hell. While I wonder what exactly he's been doing to get beat up - certainly not much in his own book - he does spend a lot of time wearing bandages these days. Also, Samnee did a good job with Elektra's outfit. Kept it as modest as you can, avoided making it look like it was just painted on her. I wasn't initially happy with Mamba and Constrictor's new looks. Some of that is a leftover mistrust of armored "new looks" from the '90s (see Captain America, Daredevil, Booster Gold), and I think some of it is the large gap between the "jaws" on Mamba's helmet. Just looks kind of odd. But they're not bad, there's at least still a little diversity among them to all for individual personality, and I love the deep blue and gold color scheme. Props to Javier Rodriguez on that one.