Daredevil Season 2 Review (Spoiler Free)22nd March 2016
War is coming and the hero of Hell’s Kitchen returns, but how does this second instalment stack up?
By now superheroes have become the norm rather than the exception. With a hugely over saturated market of movies and TV shows, it’s hard to find anything truly exceptional.
Daredevil, however has proven to be one of those diamonds in the rough with a ground-breaking first season concluding last year and leaving us all wanting more, and boy does it deliver!
Perhaps the most commendable feature of both seasons in the franchise is its genuine attempts to bring something unique and challenging to the table. While directing and cinematography are not something I would ever give the Marvel’s film franchises credit for, Daredevil has an undeniably effective and consistent style while not being afraid to experiment.
The camera shots are given a darkened and grimy colour palette which serves to enhance the gritty feel of the forsaken city its set in. Meanwhile, the famous ‘corridor scene’ from the first season is replicated once again with another impressive single-shot fight sequence, proving that the directors want to do more than just churn out repetitive action like so many other additions to the genre.
Speaking of action, the often scary realism and violence is blended perfectly with an almost spectacular style of highly skilled and choreographed fights. While some have made comparisons to Nolan’s Batman in the way the action plays out, the impressive martial arts and stylistic approach is more indicative of The Raid or Oldboy.
Moreover, the action sequences couldn’t be more enthralling and heart racing and the effort and performance put into them should be admired. With the introduction of The Punisher and Electra, two characters without the ‘no killing rule’ Daredevil himself withholds, the action only becomes more relentless and unforgiving this time around.
When I heard Jon Bernthal was being cast to play The Punisher I had very high hopes. After seeing him play Shane in The Walking Dead, I knew he could bring an intensity and unapologetic strength to the role and that’s exactly what he did.
Daredevil’s interpretation of the character plays out as a mirror to the protagonist himself and what he could become if the need for revenge and hatred of evil outweighs his self-control and compassion.
The Punisher’s almost Terminator like introduction sets him up to be a merciless juggernaut of fury, tearing his way through criminals and bringing into question what it means to be a vigilante in a city owned by tyrants.
Electra is somewhat more underwhelming in my opinion. She appears to our protagonist as the embodiment of how attractive the prospect of pursuing the Daredevil persona is and the temptation to leave everything else behind. She also brings with her the wider story arc of the season, and thus possibly one of its few shortfalls.
Long story short, a war is brewing and the criminal underworld of Hell’s Kitchen is proving to be both sinister and outlandish. Ninjas abound as we flit between the gritty story of The Punisher arc and the fantastical world of Asian crime organisations and immortal beings.
The season suffers greatly in my opinion because of this difference in tones as it becomes difficult to be truly invested in the twists and turns of such a seemingly inconsistent world.
That said though, the season was still extremely impressive and I would highly recommend it to anyone who wants something more mature and intelligent than the average superhero romp while still being entertaining and thrilling.