It’s nice to have a new series of “Daredevil.” I’m normally opposed to books being renumbered at the drop of a hat, but in the case of “Daredevil” I’m feeling a bit more lenient. This is thanks to two things: first, Mark Waid and Chris Samnee have been telling fantastic stories here and if this means they get more attention, all the better. Second, it’s nice to have another Marvel Universe comic that’s not set in or even near New York City.
“Daredevil” #2 continues to have Daredevil adjust to living in San Francisco again. Here, it’s not so much the complaints from the last issue (most notably how the buildings aren’t quiet as close together as they are in Manhattan, something of which Spider-Man should also take note), but rather the people in the area. Reintroducing the character of the Shroud feels like a fairly brilliant idea on Waid’s part. It’s great that there’s a West Coast character to bring in (having been in Los Angeles-based stories before), but the fact that it’s another blind superhero? What are the odds, right?
That said, Waid doesn’t go the easy route in “Daredevil” #2 when it comes to the Shroud. The character comes across wonderfully disturbed from his first appearance and readers see what’s rattling around in his subconscious. While it would have been easy for the sudden bout of exposition explaining the Shroud halfway through the comic to come across as clunky or dull, here it’s still attention-grabbing. It helps that there are some slightly disturbing aspects of the Shroud’s origin, and they’re played up to good effect as a result.
A lot of that comes from Samnee’s visuals. As always, they’re crisp and clean, a beautiful iconic set of pages. We’re so used to the beautiful from Samnee that here it’s almost a shock to get the darker and dirtier. The Shroud comes across in many ways as a grubby, dirty version of Cloak. His outfit billows and moves in a heavy, less-than-elegant way, and when we see how the Shroud became blind it’s creepy because of how it leads up to the moment, rather than showing us any sort of gore. From a casual dinner to the Shroud’s secret lair, everything here looks great.
“Daredevil” #2 continues what Waid and Samnee have been doing for a while, now: telling excellent “Daredevil” stories. If you haven’t been reading the series, this shift to San Francisco is a great opportunity to jump on board.