The following review/opinion piece contains major spoilers about the Netflix original series, Marvel’s Daredevil. Be warned, here and now, that I’ll be giving rundowns of the episode and commenting here and there about what I’ve watched and opinions on certain scenes or events. Read on if you’d like to share your own comments below, or come back another time after you’ve watched the show. Thanks for your time!
36 hours earlier …
Don’t you love it when a show starts out with a flashback? Well, it isn’t a full flashback, but one that adds a small amount of humor to what we are witness to in the opening of episode 3 of Marvel’s Daredevil. A gentleman interrupts closing time at a bowling alley to murder a man who I take is a member of the mob? Either way, as the police arrive, he simply gets calmly down on his hands and knees and puts hands behind head to ask for a lawyer.
And voila! Our very interesting setup for the latest episode on my watch list.
Matt Murdock is still beat up and hurting from his last adventure. He meets a priest who remembers him from confessional, and as Jack Murdock’s kid. The Father offers him a latte, but Matt must get to work. It’s nice to see the continuity between episodes. Matt’s still suffering from his injuries of running into the Russians and saving the kidnapped boy. Most superhero shows would have him fully recovered (powerless or not).
To continue the “next day” feel of the show, Foggy comes into the office with a hangover and complains about their staying out the night before. Seeing Matt’s battered face, the group wonders if Matt needs a dog, to which he declines. Everyone is suddenly frozen in their tracks as a knock at their door signals the arrival of a potential client.
The new arrival – Mister Wesley from the premier episode, under the employ of Mr. Fisk and liaison to the various mobs in Hell’s Kitchen – shows that he has researched Foggy and Matt and their backgrounds. He’s also willing to hire them straight out, presenting a check from his “employer,” to simply continue doing the right thing and sticking to the side of the right and just. When Matt still doesn’t seem convinced, Wesley decides to take a shot at Karen being “employed” by the firm. He offers them a chance to review the case he’s offering them and gives them a set amount of time to go to a certain location. He then gets up and leaves with no further explanation. Matt follows him to the point where he gets into a car and tells him employer that everything’s been taken care of.
The client in question is the gentleman from the bowling alley. He is claiming self defense, and when in doubt, he asks Foggy how he feels he should relate the case, wondering which sounds better. He then recites sentences that any jury would be happy to hear, claiming his innocence, how he realizes he has made a mistake and so on. In other words, he’s practiced his plea in detail. Matt and Foggy seem to just be a means to an end.
This episode also introduces us to a news reporter. Ben has contacts with the mob, but his big story is on a new player in the game of Hell’s Kitchen. His editor doesn’t like where he’s going and tries to direct him to a story on subway lines. Ben is an old fashioned reporter, though, and he wants to stand firm and deliver the news of the underbelly of the city. His boss just isn’t giving, though, which makes me wonder if he has ties to Fisk as well, keeping the paper afloat in this day of blogs and online information.
Matt continues to question their new client, switching sides with Foggy and wanting to push this guy and see if he has any real ties to Mister Wesley (which, keep in mind, that he never actually revealed his name to the guys). While Foggy wants out, Matt tries to throw a bunch of legalese at the client, but he shows he already knows how things are going to play out by telling Matt and Foggy how the case will play out.
I like how quickly Foggy changes his mind when he actually sees how despicable their new client is. He’s the one who originally claims they need to open up their range of clientele but then decides it may be just too deep.
Meanwhile, Karen Page is being offered a deal and threatened with legal action because she broke a confidentiality agreement with the company she exposed (Union Allied). Karen attempts to defend herself by bringing up her murdered coworker, however the lawyer counters her and thanks her help in exposing such criminal activities. She’s offered 6 months of pay to keep her mouth shut and a clean slate to start anew.
Whatever Union Allied is really behind, you can see Fisk’s power in action as he draws all his cards in close and begins to play his hand. He’s offering bribes to keep Karen quiet. Matt and Foggy are offered a guilty client and money to continue doing what is “right.” Where are they going with all of this?
Our favorite reporter, Ben, has insurance problems. His wife is in the hospital and seriously ill. She’s on the verge of losing coverage, from the sound of it, and he’s struggling to find a way to keep her in the hospital to get the treatment she needs.
In the court room, Matt uses his sensitive hearing to discover a white female on the jury is having some issues. A plant, perhaps, to throw the trial. While focusing on this lady, he’s distracted by the fact that Mister Wesley’s watch has entered the picture again. He’s entered the court room and is sitting in the back row. As the woman on the jury leaves to go home, she’s stopped in an alley way by a thug that assures her to keep her wits about her until the trial is over. As she walks away, Daredevil comes in and threatens the guy, wanting to know who his boss is. The thug doesn’t know so Daredevil tells him to get the woman to drop out of the jury. The next day, she does and Matt delivers the closing argument for the case against their client.
Matt asks for forgiveness as he’s been having issues with morality and humanity. He points out that his client is the one who murdered the victim. He doesn’t claim to know what was in his clients heart when it happened. Matt states the exact facts as given to everyone. He is basically clearing himself of the fact that they (he and Foggy) are simply doing their job based on those facts. That’s a nice way of overcoming an impression that their firm defends the guilty.
Wesley takes a ride with Leland, another gentleman from episode one who is involved in embezzlement and was responsible for transferring funds from Union Allied. He demands they take care of the client of Foggy and Matt, but Wesley insists that they’ve left too big of a trail of dead bodies already. Matt and Foggy are their way of trying to brush things up into a tidier pile.
Karen visits her coworker’s wife and discovers she’s been offered the same deal – and accepted it. She encourages Karen to let it go and move on, just as she’s going to do. Ben discovers the insurance has approved more treatment. And then Karen walks in and wants to discuss more on the story of her former employers.
In the courtroom, Mister Wesley quietly joins the gang again, just in time for the reveal of a hung jury. The client tells Matt that he gave a hell of a speech, and the rest of the scene fades out. Cut to night, and Daredevil comes out of the darkness and attacks Healey, enciting his own brand of justice while trying to discover who hired Nelson and Murdock for the case.
And it’s out.
Wilson Fisk is the man behind the events Matt and Foggy have been dragged into. Healey regrets it immediately, realizing he is as good as dead. He blames Daredevil for not killing him, telling him he’s going to be punished anyway once Fisk finds out he revealed his name. In desperation, he turns and stabs himself through the eye on a piece of metal.
We end the episode with our first real introduction to Wilson Fisk. He’s big, he’s bald and he’s buying art. Ladies and gentlemen, we have our Kingpin.
I feel this was a solid episode that showed excellent continuity between episodes and had a great storyline that advanced the series forward. Excellent acting, brutal combat scenes, especially in the beginning at the bowling alley. Daredevil (I know, I know, he still doesn’t have an actual name, yet) is taking it personally, referring to Hell’s Kitchen as his city, trying to get that sense of fear into his enemies. Continuing with the embezzlement storyline and giving Wesley more screen time was probably the most boring part of episode 3, but still vital to the overall tale being crafted.
Now that Fisk is on screen, I look forward to seeing more of him in action for the simple fact that I enjoy Vincent D’Onofrio’s work. Foggy is still a great sidekick to Matt, allowing the two to play off one another in such a natural fashion.
How’d you like this episode? Or have you already forgotten it in your binge watching induced coma?! Either way, I’ll continue on with my episode-by-episode reviews because I need the practice in writing them out. Who knows, I may even be able to craft a spoiler-free review one day! Yay!