My rating: 4 of 5 stars
There’s a lot to unpack here…a racist African American albino stalks a series of women he perceives as being rotten and infected in an effort to purify them. It’s deeply creepy and Nocenti juxtaposes Rotgut viewing everyone and everything as rotten with Daredevil seeing everything, and in particular Karen Page, as beautiful through his radar sense.
Whereas Nocenti’s previous issue lacked subtlety, this one is almost too subtle and too nuanced, as I’m left unsure of exactly what she’s trying to say. Especially as in the light of modern times Rotgut railing against plastic pollution and cigarettes seems entirely mainstream and not the ravings of a lunatic. A lunatic who’s twisted view of the world was instilled in him by a mother who expressed her love for him by denying him pollutants like red meat and coca cola. Which he then as an adult orders for himself at the diner where Matt Murdock is working…and then complains that they’re trying to poison him with the food he ordered. But, I guess you can’t expect rationality from someone who goes on to cut up a prostitute.
I have to say it’s weird seeing adverts for Lazer Tag and Cap’n Crunch opposite pages where Daredevil is arguing with a pimp that he doesn’t want to stop the prostitute doing her job, he just wants to make sure she’s safe. But that’s eighties comics for you!
Anyway, this is dark and gritty and uncomfortable reading at times, which is exactly what I was expecting from this run. Oh, and it has an excellent Art Adams cover too!