Before its release last year Daredevil seemed an improbable concept to pull off. Street level masked vigilantes haven’t faired particularly well on the small screen in recent times. But the combination of engaging characters and a mature aesthetic made Daredevil one of the most refreshing Netflix television productions.
It was smart, dark and at times funny. It was the grounded approach to fight choreography, rarely seen outside of the cinema that won our appreciation the most. Many reviewers criticised the uneven pacing theorising that it was down to the Netflix release format.
Some may blame this open format for the pacing problems in Season 1, when in reality its this format that allows the show to tell its story so enticingly. Without the need to have end of episode cliffhangers or mid-season finales, the show runners have been able to stay more focused on the narrative.
Given that the original plan was not to see Daredevil again until the Defenders TV show, the fact that the Punisher and Electra have been woven seamlessly into the mix is a huge achievement by the show runners. The Punisher and Electra serve a similar purpose, pushing and pulling Matt in different moral directions. In the absence of Wilson Fisk, these two strong anti-hero types go some way to addressing this.
We were luck enough to see the first 7 episodes this week and for fans of the previous season, worry not, season 2 has everything we loved from season 1. Despite losing some friends and enemies, the world seems to have grown since we last saw these characters. The focus has widened to let our three leads (Matt, Foggy and Karen) shine as they expand and investigate their own plot offshoots. What this season does better is making these secondary plots come together to increase the tension and not dissipate it.