[WARNING – This review contains SPOILERS.]
Charles Soule’s brilliant Daredevil run reaches its 14th issue, concluding with the “Dark Art” arc. This has been one of the best comic books to come out this year. Charlie Soule has done majestic things for Horn Head and created a whole slew of amazing new characters that readers will never forget.
In Daredevil #14, Matt Murdock must rescue his understudy Blindspot from the mysterious and brutal villain, Muse. While DD is trying to pinpoint their location, in the sewers below, Muse is giving his captive a peak behind the artist’s curtain and it is horrifying. However, that’s the last thing he sees, because once Daredevil catches up with his foe, Muse gauges out Blindspot’s eyes in a comic book moment I will never forget. In pursuit of the mad artist, Matt saves a room full of people that were next in line to be slaughtered in the name of creativity – along with some Inhuman help – but it’s Blindspot who pays the price.
This comic book is chilling and unforgettable. Charles Soule continues his streak of creating instant classics. We finally get to know more about Muse, and every development is more disturbing than the last. It’s a rarity in modern comic books that an established character like Daredevil is faced with true consequences which readers also feel as they experience the journey. Blindspot’s character development through these 14 issues have been vast, and when he loses his eyes it is absolutely gut-wrenching.
The scene where DD sits in the middle of the city street in order to focus his abilities on tracking Muse is a great example of Soule having fun playing around with Daredevil’s powers; something he has done throughout this series. And Muse punishing himself for what he did to Blindspot after he’s been caught has solidified him as a majorly memorable villain.
Ron Garney and Matt Milla have some of the best chemistry an art team can have in comic books right now. Every color choice is as crucial as is every line drawn, and they’re an untouchable duo. The beautiful brutality on display solidifies the lasting effect this comic book has; the imagery lingers with readers. Daredevil has a very deep range of emotions on display as well, in facial expressions and body language, helping to complete the full picture of every panel. Today’s comic book landscape doesn’t often see story and art teams stick together for massive runs, but hopefully these three will be an exception.
Daredevil #14 is superhero comics at their best; every panel of every page is crucial. I cannot recommend this series enough. It’s earning its place among the longtime character’s essential reading. If you haven’t read the 13 issues leading up to this, do yourself a favor and go back, it’s well worth your time. Daredeveil is easily one of the best comic books of 2016.