Issue(s): Daredevil #248, Daredevil #249
After hanging out with the Fatboys...
...Daredevil finds out that Karen Page has rented a space where, as Matt Murdock, he can run a clinic and a hotline dispensing legal advice even though he's been disbarred. He isn't happy about that, saying that part of his life is over, but as Daredevil, he still investigates the case of the first person that calls in, a tenant/slum lord dispute. However, the tenant has the law on his side and Daredevil is powerless to do anything.
Later, Daredevil wanders into New Jersey where (of course!) a boy gets blinded swimming in a lake where someone's been dumping toxic chemicals.
It turns out that Foggy Nelson, who is still unknowingly working for the Kingpin, is the lawyer responsible for defending the chemical company, Kelco, that did the dumping. His girlfriend Glorianna isn't happy about this (it probably doesn't help that Leonardi draws Foggy to look like a pig), and we also learn that the Kingpin is deliberately trying to attract Daredevil's attention.
Matt investigates Kelco as Daredevil and fights a robot...
...but also tries to work within the system by acting as an eyewitness for the dumping crime. However, the fact that he's blind kind of ruins that.
What does any of this have to do with Wolverine, you ask? Well, there's also Bushwacker, a villain that's been hired to kill mutants.
And Wolverine's on his trail.
And while Matt Murdock is getting his legal groove back on by investigating Kelco and helping with the tenant dispute, Bushwacker's wife comes into the clinic. She thinks her husband is just crazy, and she makes Matt promise to get the police to bring him in without killing him.
Bushwacker seems to be targeting artistic mutants specifically.
And Wolverine doesn't like it.
I often say reading a Nocenti comic is like watching a dream, where characters can't seem to stop themselves from saying whatever they are thinking or not being able to stop themselves from doing things that they know are wrong. Here's Bushwacker's latest victim.
I won't even get into the weird sexual stuff and transition to a Bugs Bunny cartoon that follows.
The conflict is between Wolverine, who wants to kill Bushwacker, and Daredevil, who just wants to bring him to justice.
In the end Daredevil does stop Wolverine from killing Bushwacker, although not until after Bushwacker kills another mutant. Bushwacker does wind up badly burnt though, which doesn't win Daredevil any points with his wife. We end with Karen thinking to herself "Oh no. Oh, Matt -- how much can you take? How much can one man take before he breaks!". No, please. No more breaking. We already broke Matt Murdock and he was Born Again, remember? The free clinic idea, although it's an acknowledged rehash of the situation from circa issue #130, is a good one; there's no need to break Matt down again so soon.
Rick Leonardi's art here is unfortunately more on the messy edge of the spectrum we saw from his previous issue with Wolverine. And Ann Nocenti is Ann Nocenti. Since Nocenti is the X-Men editor, i'm surprised to not see any attempt at coordination with Uncanny X-Men; Wolverine talks about there being a war on mutants, but as far as we see Bushwacker isn't related to the Marauders or anything else going on in the X-books, and there's no establishing scene saying when Wolverine leaves the X-Men to appear here.
Quality Rating: C
Chronological Placement Considerations: The MCP place this between Uncanny X-Men #220-221, same gap as Wolverine's Alpha Flight appearance.
Continuity Insert? N
My Reprint: N/A
Inbound References (4): showArranger, Bushwacker, Butch (Fatboys), Daredevil, Darla (Fatboys), Eightball (Fatboys), Foggy Nelson, Glorianna O'Breen, Karen Page, Kingpin, Marilyn Burbank, Wolverine
The boy who was blinded- Tyrone- has a couple more appearances.
Posted by: Michael | April 16, 2014 7:55 PM
I'll wait to tag Tyrone when i get through the other issues and see if he's got a last name or something.
I'm also considering renaming the Bratpack characters as Fatboys since that seems to be the name they use more.
Posted by: fnord12 | April 16, 2014 8:45 PM
I remember enjoying Nocenti's run on this title, but those impressionistic "visceral" interior monologues do grate a bit, looking back. "He's a brutal and fast...always one step ahead of me. You're makin' me feel like an animal!" It's also odd that the X-Men editor has such a poor ear for Wolverine's "voice." "A virtuoso, a genius, on his way to immortality through his magical compositions"? Really? From Wolverine? That sounds more like something Storm, Kitty, or Psylocke would think.
Posted by: Todd | April 16, 2014 10:28 PM
Marvel Age ran a letter criticizing the use of Wolverine here, saying that the character was written like some homicidal slasher. Marvel defended it with something like "Wolverine didn't cut up Daredevil, only his costume!" which makes everything all better, doesn't it?
Posted by: Mark Drummond | April 19, 2014 5:43 PM
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