April 6’s Devil’s Reign #6 (opens in new tab) by writer Chip Zdarsky and artist Marco Checchetto was chock full ‘o big changes for Marvel Comics street-level heroes.
We’re not gonna spoil all the surprises, other than to say one long-time Marvel character looks like he’ll be getting a surprising new job, while another long-time Marvel character surprisingly retired and literally sailed off to a brand new life into the sunset – while one character has a whole new lease on his career.
Guess which one we’re about to talk about now?
Yeah, the one that we didn’t give you a link for another story to.
Without getting into the full play-by-play, let’s just say Daredevil-Matt and Daredevil-Elektra and the Marvel superheroes of New York City overcame the mind-controlled Thunderbolts, defeated the Purple Man who was doing all the mind-controlling, and then Daredevil (the Matt one), flirted with killing Wilson Fisk to avenge the Kingpin murdering his twin brother Mike Murdock (who he believed was Matt, who he believed was Daredevil … whew).
But with the Kingpin defeated after a mano-a-mano street brawl, Matt remembered who he is and doesn’t kill him. Kingpin was (seemingly) arrested, and removed from office as Mayor of New York City.
While Fisk’s ultimate fate is tied up in one of those previous stories we told you about, with the streets of New York City now once again safe for superheroes and costumed vigilantes like the Daredevils to operate as they always have, surprisingly that isn’t the direction Elektra and Matt go in.
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We already knew the heroes would have something of a new direction after Devil’s Reign, as on June 8th Marvel relaunches the series with a new #1 (opens in new tab) in what the publisher calls the “explosive beginning of an all-new era for Hell’s Kitchen’s guardian devil.”
Now, ‘new eras’ at Marvel Comics is pretty much standard operating procedure at this stage, but interestingly, the publisher’s copy is something of misdirection, as the promised new direction revealed at the end of Devil’s Reign #6 seems to suggest be the Daredevils won’t be the guardians of Hell’s Kitchen at all.
The duo now has bigger fish to fry (sorry Hell’s Kitchen).
With Matt Murdock dead in the eyes of the world and New York City free of Kingpin, Matt tells Elektra he’s ready to leave the city, to put streetfights behind him, and to “think bigger.”
Matt tells her he’s ready to join The Fist, the organization dedicated to taking down the long-time criminal organization The Hand, but that he also has bigger ideas beyond that – ideas to save the world.
And with that declaration, the Persons Without Fear leap off a rooftop onto their new mission statement, with Matt once again saying “let’s go save the world!”
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It’ll be interesting to see where now long-time DD writer Zdarsky (who’s staying with the title in its new direction along with Checchetto) takes things from here. During his near-six decade history, the Man Without Fear has mostly operated as a street-level urban vigilante in New York City and has never fully embraced being a part of the superhero community with memberships in superteams like the Avengers.
How Matt and Elektra plan to save the world as not-very-well-financed hand-to-hand-fighters with limited to no superpowers at all will be something to keep an eye on in the coming months.
Now that Devil’s Reign has concluded, will it find a place among the best Daredevil stories of all time?