Daredevil/The Punisher #1 Review
Written by Charles Soule
Pencil and Inks by Szymon Kudranski
Colors by Jim Charalampidis
Lettering by Clayton Cowles
Reviewed by David Hildebrand
There is no doubt that the ongoing rivalry between Daredevil and The Punisher throughout the years has been more than entertaining. Add in the interactions and fistifcuffs from the second season of Daredevil on Netflix and you can’t help but get excited for this latest chapter between Matt Murdock and Frank Castle. The title of this particular installment is Seventh Circle. It is written by Charles Soule, who has also taken over the latest Daredevil series. I was looking forward to this book for a couple of reasons. Obviously number one for me, is that The Punisher is in it. The second one is the fact that Soule is writing the story and I have enjoyed his current run of Daredevil so far, so with both of those factors, I can’t go wrong…..right? Well, not really…..
The story begins with Murdock and police officers escorting a prisoner named Antonov to a prison bus. Matt is explaining to him that he cannot get a fair trial and impartial jury in Manhattan, so Texas is his next stop. As the conversation continues, Matt hears a rifle being chambered and he dives to move Antonov out of the bullet’s path. After Antonov is safely on the bus and moving, Matt evaluates the situation, debates between three potential shooters and finally comes to the conclusion that it is indeed The Punisher that tried to assassinate his prisoner. Daredevil rips off his shirt, which is a horrible knock off of Clark Kent exposing his “S”uperman outfit and rushes after Castle. A car chase ensues and even Daredevil’s new sidekick, Blindspot shows up. His first reaction to The Punisher is amusing, but at the same time, I am wondering why the decision was made to put him into this book. Maybe he will be a deciding factor later in the story, but right now, I feel like he is a fifth wheel. He doesn’t fit in right away with the dynamics of Daredevil and The Punisher. It will be interesting to see where exactly he does fit in as the story progresses.
Charles Soule is at the helm for this latest story between Daredevil and The Punisher. It starts out slow and in the beginning you have an overload of Matt’s inner dialogue. I understand Soule is setting up the scene and the story but it just feels like minimal effort is there and it is more filler as we eventually get to the action scenes. The story finally picks up when the action finally does, but it feels like a task to get there. Much like having to eat a meal that you don’t really want just to get the desert at the end. The art by Szymon Kudranski is well drawn out, I like the designs of the characters he draws and it helps get through the slower moments of the story. The colors are dark in nature, the story appears to take place on a cloudy day, all the panels feel gritty, there isn’t anything vivid or bright here!
Borrow it. Or maybe even wait for the trade. It is a very simple story that I am sure will get deeper as the story expands but right now, there isn’t anything here that would make me tell someone to run right out and buy it. I will continue to read the story, I do try and collect as many Punisher stories that I can get my hands on. But I am hoping that my patience will pay off and this will turn into one of the greater stories between Daredevil and The Punisher.