Date: 2017-05-18 03:15 am (UTC)
It really is, and not just because I liked Kirsten. This story completely and utterly robs her of the thing Waid usually took care to give her: agency.

Soule does do a lot of justice to her character in other respects. She is a not-superhuman but strong woman, made stronger by her sense of humor, and handles the craziness of Daredeviltry with relative ease. (I was very pleasantly surprised to find that her "voice" was recognizable.) For that matter, even Matt's character seems about right to me here. He's falling into old patterns-- "All my girlfriends die, I'm lying to protect her, something violent will always happen to us because I live in a serial comic book, blah blah"-- but doing so as a believable reaction to the identity crisis that left him extra vulnerable to the Purple Man in the first place.

And regarding that crisis, the struggle is real, but there's nothing about it that really sells the idea that the fix for all Matt's problems is to go back to more or less the way he was when Frank Miller was writing him, only single. With all due respect to his Father Confessor, this is not a good decision.

I *believe* this story, I just don't *enjoy* it. Because in the end, no matter how you dress it up, this is still a story about Matt giving up on personal growth as soon as Kirsten and Foggy are not in a position to stop him, whereas Waid's run was very much about the decision to make personal growth, and the importance of friends and loved ones who'll keep you on that path. (Foggy doesn't get much agency either, but he has less of an excuse. Dude should never have let this stand.)

Maybe there was no way to do a new Daredevil series that honored that, especially since the much jollier and self-actualized Matt of Waid's last issues was about as far from Netflix Matt as Adam West's Batman was from Ben Affleck's, and at some point, media synergy's gotta synergize. But that don't mean I gotta like it.

Another way to go with this story would be for the Purple Kids to put Matt's secret ID back in the bottle, Matt to tell Kirsten just like he told Foggy-- and for Matt to insist on keeping his secret ID secret from anyone else, from then on. That's a decision his best friend and girlfriend would have a VERY hard time accepting after all the events of Waid's run, and ultimately it's one they might not condone. You still get to the exact same place, but you do it without making Kirsten a half-brainwashed patsy.

I dunno which version makes Matt look worse, though: the one where he surrenders to his anxieties right at the moment where it's easiest to do so and makes the "clean break," or the one where he clings to those anxieties all the way through weeks of arguing with those who knew him at his happiest.
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