Merging real life events with that of the fictional super-hero world can be a recipe for mediocre and questionable storytelling. When Marvel Comics decided to respond to the events of September 11, 2001 with its publication of Amazing Spider-Man #37 (Vol.2), the story contained so many flaws that it simply proved that this was nothing but a poorly conceived sales gimmick. This is why I was somewhat apprehensive to purchase Daredevil: Redemption since the plot is inspired by the true story of "The Robin Hood Hills Murders".
However, David Hines' writing skill on the District X series made a convincing case that while I await the eventual release of the over-sized hardcover of Daredevil Volume 5, this trade paperback could somewhat appease my insatiable desire for more Brian Michael Bendis tales about Hell's Kitchen guardian. I do not regret putting my faith in him. Alongside Frank Miller, Dennis O'Neil, the often forgotten Roger McKenzie and the aforementioned Bendis, Hines' name has to be listed as the author about one of the character's best all-time stories.
This is not your standard super-hero garbage where Doctor Doom wants to avenge himself against The Fantastic Four for being second best to Reed Richards or The Avengers going head to head with Kang in order to thwart his plan for world domination by time travel.
Hines offers the reader a disturbing glimpse about police corruption, bigotry and the terrifying influence of Christian doctrine on a community that is as small-minded as its church. He also addresses cringing topics such as child sexual abuse and domestic violence. This is not the kind of evil that can be solved with mutant powers or gamma-radiated monsters.
Oddly enough, Daredevil is barely utilized throughout the story.Read more ›
Set against the backdrop of a rural Southern town in Alabama, this story tells the tale of three teenagers who are accused in the murder of a young boy. The story follows the three characters through their trial, and introduces us to a cast of characters who occupy the town. Like every small town, secrets abound, and many are uncovered as the story proceeds. The ending does not give the reader full closure, which makes the story feel all the more realistic.
At its core, this is a story about culture clashes, prejudice, truth, and unchecked human passion. The story merely happens to be told in comic book format, but could have easily made for a full length Grishalm movie, or an excellent episode of Law & Order.
I am a huge Daredevil fan, and have a large library of DD titles: the Miller run, the Bendis run, Brubaker's work, the current Andy Diggle material, and a few other authors as well. This story is riveting for its human drama. Those looking for an action/adventure story full of explosions and fight scenes will be disappointed. But the story delivers on another level, which leaves a lasting emotional impact. As a parent, I found the theme of a father looking out for his son particularly moving. Highly recommended, not only for comic fans and daredevil fans, but for anyone who likes a legal thriller.
There's already a brilliant review on this page, but I feel it's my civic duty to plug it some more so someone buy's it, because it deserves to be read. As mentioned in the other review it explores some pretty shady and very real social issues within a small, deeply religous town that has been shattered and pushed to the edge by a gruesome murder of a young boy. Alongside that, it also contrasts Matt's role as both a lawyer and a vigilante, and seeks to show wheter working within the law or outside the law achieves more good, and kinda leaves it up for the reader to decide. For instance as DD he jeopardises somewhat his own legal case by elimanating a key suspect but as a lawyer he faces an extremely uphill and slanted battle, where justice is elusive. For example Matt suspects strongly someone else as the killer, so why doesn't he just beat the guy up, and turn him in? Cause he knows as a lawyer that doesn't achieve anything in the long term. He's not the Punisher, he's way cooler and more complicated.
The art, by Michael Gaydos (who provided the art for Alias by Bendis) is also great as it is very suited to the story and to Daredevil (I hope he gets to draw him again someday)though it may not be everyone's cup of tea if your more used to art in more "Super-hero" titles like the Avengers or X-men. Covers, however, are by Bill Sienkiewicz.
The only complaint I have is that it could have been shortened by an issue, as about mid-way through it starts to slow down, hampering the flow and excitement of the story, but thankfully picks up again.
Few comics dare to explore the notion that, as powerful as they are, even superheroes can't save everyone. Inspired by the 1993 Robin Hood Hills Murders in West Memphis, Arkansas, David Hine and Michael Gaydas didn't just create such a comic; they tested the limits of what is wrong with our society. In the ironically-named town of Redemption, ace attorney Matt Murdock defends a teen with an interest in the occult, who stands accused of a brutal murder. As he conducts his own investigation as Daredevil, Murdock has his hands full with the victim's vindictive father, a corrupt sheriff, and a god-fearing public.
This being my first "Daredevil" comic, it doesn't have as much superhero action as I would expect. But the story 'redeems' itself by portraying a man torn between his desire for justice and the duties of his profession. Hine knows drama, and Gaydas knows the art that goes with that mood; a combination that puts them both in a favorable position.
This comic is unrated: Violence, Adult Situations.