Daredevil #243 by Ann Nocenti

Daredevil #243Daredevil #243 by Ann Nocenti

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

First off I should say that I don’t feel qualified to comment on the possibly problematic racial aspects of this issue. I simply don’t know enough about voodoo and Haiti to know if there are issues with those parts of the story.

That said, this is really good stuff. The writing is, at times, poetic and it combines with the art to create a comic which is, at times, incredibly atmospheric. At times dark and mysterious and also quite disturbing in places. A Haitian drug dealer, who goes by the peculiar name of Danny Guitar, is exploiting people’s superstition and using voodoo, which he’s clear he doesn’t believe in, to control the drugs trade in Hell’s Kitchen. However, a mysterious pair intend to make him pay for his cynical misuse of voodoo.

Beyond that, the underlying theme of this comic is whether or not it’s right to mete out justice with your fists, or to gather evidence and prosecute wrongdoers in a court of law. Both the equally oddly named Detective “Bucko” Leary and Karen Page challenge Daredevil on this point, and so he seeks to gather evidence of Danny Guitar’s drug dealing to hand over to to the proper authorities.

Look, this is an entirely valid point, and probably should be explored in super hero comics…but, at the same time, if the system worked in Marvel’s New York then there’d be no need for costumed heroes and this book wouldn’t exist. The very premise behind this book is that Matt needs to work both within and without the system to see that justice is served.

Overall this is a very strong issue, with some great writing and some appropriately gritty and atmospheric (yes, I’ve used that word twice) art.

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