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Essential Daredevil - Volume 3 Paperback – June 13, 2012

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Paperback, June 13, 2012

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Product Details

  • Age Range: 1 and up
  • Grade Level: Preschool and up
  • Series: Daredevil
  • Paperback: 584 pages
  • Publisher: Marvel (June 13, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0785164243
  • ISBN-13: 978-0785164241
  • Shipping Weight: 3.5 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #15,612,421 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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"Essential Daredevil, Volume 3" collects together episodes #49-74 of "Daredevil: The Man Without Fear!" along with "Iron Man" #35-36, which was a crossover story about the Zodiac gang. This represents a transitional period as Roy Thomas replaced Stan Lee as the writer for the book, although by the end of this collection it is Gerry Gonway who has taken over as scripter. Except for three issues drawn by Barry Windsor-Smith, it is Gene Colan who is DD's artist. In fact, at this point in the history of the comic book Daredevil just did not look right unless Colan was drawing him. We are not yet up to the point when Colan's pencils started being inked by Tom Palmer, so I have a slight preference for Syd Shores as inker over George Klein and Johnny Craig. As for Windsor-Smith, who was still just plain Barry Smith at that point, his art on "Daredevil" was certainly a big improvement over his first work for Marvel, the infamous "X-Men" #53 that he literally drew on park benches in Central Park, but there was still nothing to indicate what he would be doing within a couple of years on "Conan the Barbarian" (although he is already into drawing more panels per page than other comic book artists).

At the beginning of this collection things are not going well for our hero. Now that Foggy is New York City's District Attorney he law firm of Nelson and Murdock has broken up and Matt Murdock no longer wants to be Daredevil. However, Starr Saxon has created a robot to track down Daredevil, even if he is in his civilian identity. But when Saxon discovers that Matt Murdock is Daredevil, that changes everything, especially when radioactive particles in his blood threaten DD's life.
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Format: Paperback
his third volume of Daredevil reprints sees ol' Hornhead on a variety of adventures with the last issue of the Stan Lee run, the Roy Thomas' run as writer and then the Gerry Conway run, with issues 49-74 and Iron Man 35 and 36. With the exception of a few issues where he was on vacation, Gene Colan pencils each of the stories, and that's practically worth three stars itself.

Thomas really had a great handle for the character. His writing style made Daredevil a clever crime fighter. He never quite solved the problem that vexed Daredevil in terms of the B-grade villains, but the way Thomas wrote Daredevil, I didn't care. Daredevil was a great character who didn't great villains to play off of. The plots were fun. First, there was Daredevil deciding to kill off the character Matt Murdock only to resurrect and reveal his identity to Karen Page which turns out to be a mistake. Murdock's overall cognitive dissonance is lessened as he becomes special assistant to District Attorney Foggy Nelson.

Karen wants him to quit being Daredevil but just as he's about to retire, he's drawn into a war with Crime Wave much to Karen's chagrin. She leaves New York and Murdoch's unable to help him thanks to a duel with the Gladiator that's brought about through the ineptitude and cluelessness of Foggy Nelson. Then Murdoch follows her to the West Coast.

The Karen Page story line really is one of the negatives of the Roy Thomas run. Maybe, it was her bad early impression, or the fact that she's just so obviously not the right woman for Matt/Daredevil, but the storyline is painful as Matt/DD continues pining for this relationship that was never meant to be.

Even out of the bad of the Thomas run came some good.
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6 of 9 people found the following review helpful By J. A. Hazelwood on August 25, 2005
Format: Paperback
If you've read any of my other reviews of Marvel Essential books on this site, you may come to the conclusion that I dislike Daredevil, and I want to say that that isn't entirely true. I think that Stan Lee's decision to give a superhero the secret identity of a blind man was a masterstroke, as was making him a lawyer. After all, law enforcement is already a hobby for most comic book characters, so why not make it a profession? However, Daredevil is still among my least preferred Essential books because he is clearly the least powerful of Marvel's Dramatis Personae. I'm not saying that it's the superpowers alone that make the superhero. I'm saying that the central conflicts of a comic tale invariably reflect the capability of the main character to overcome them, and during the Silver Age, when everyone was mostly fighting thieves who had brightly-colored costumes and bizarre gimmicks, DD didn't fit in so well. Daredevil's personal Rogues Gallery were just so wimpy that Spider-Man would more likely laugh at them than fight them (Heck, anybody who has a grappling hook and 50 feet of rope could defend all of NYC from the menace of the Stilt-Man). Today's comic fans are likely to say that Frank Miller is their favorite DD writer and I feel that's because he gave him a gritty, grimy Hell's Kitchen setting and put him against exaggerated but believable underworld figures like the Kingpin, Bullseye, and Typhoid Mary. Miller presented Daredevil as a "nicer" counterpoint to the Punisher, and in my opinion that is where he works best.

Anyway, I'm here today to review the Essential Daredevil 3 (which collects DD's appearances in the early 70's). I thought that it had its moments but it's still exemplary of the personal grievances that I have against the character in the time period.
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More About the Author

Stan Lee is a man who needs no introduction. Nevertheless: Having begun his career with wartime Timely Comics and staying the course throughout the Atlas era, Stan the Man made comic-book history with Fantastic Four #1, harbinger of a bold new perspective in story writing that endures to this day. With some of the industry's greatest artists, he introduced hero after hero in Incredible Hulk, Amazing Spider-Man, X-Men and more -- forming a shared universe for rival publishers to measure themselves against. After an almost literal lifetime of writing and editing, Lee entered new entertainment fields and earned Marvel one opportunity after another. He remains one of Marvel's best-known public representatives.