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Daredevil will be Marvel’s answer to The Dark Knight
The news from Hollywood today is that Fox and Marvel are currently in heated discussions about the future of aproposed Daredevil reboot. The character who first appeared on the silver screen in 2003 and has long been pegged as the latest picture to be thrown onto the back of Hollywood's remake bandwagon. The problem is that if Fox don't begin production by October then the movie rights for the character go back to Marvel. Wherever the fate of the film one thing's for certain, the studio behind it have a real gem on their hands; in fact for my money Daredevil is the obvious successor to Christopher Nolan's Dark Knight.
Now anyone who's only experience of the character comes from the Ben Affleck starring abomination will no doubt think that I've lost the plot, after all words like gritty, gloomy and intelligent aren't exactly the first adjectives that spring to mind when describing Mark Steven Johnson's spectacular flop. But as someone who's been collecting the comics for my entire adult life, then take it from me when I say that the character's history is crammed full of everything that's made the recent Batman trilogy such a success. Like the Caped Crusader Daredevil is an everyman kind of a hero. Sure he has superpowers - his senses are enhanced by a chemical spill - but there are no alien genealogy, cosmic rays or intergalactic rings that have muddied the waters and stretch the realms of believability for characters like Superman and the Fantastic Four. Instead you can easily imagine him existing in modern day New York which is just the kind of realism that Nolan pegged his wildly successful trilogy on.
But above all else the key to the character lies in his alter ego Matt Murdock. The very best comic book adaptations come from the characters themselves rather than their costumed counterparts. Sure it's great fun to see spandex clad heroes beating the hell out of each other - just look at the success of Marvel's Avengers Assemble - but the days when cinemagoers wanted to watch the all conquering 'boy scout' style champion are long gone. Instead it seems we prefer our protagonists to be altogether more flawed, which is why Christopher Nolan's trilogy tells the story of Bruce Wayne rather than the Batman.
Therein lies the enduring appeal of a Daredevil movie. Matt Murdock has one of the most depressing lives in the superhero fraternity. He's an inherently conflicted character who's existence has been dogged by disaster. Girlfriends have come, gone and been brutally murdered; friends have been exploited, secrets exposed and decisions questioned.
He's an altogether more grown up kind of superhero whose stories are more likely to centre on prostitution, drug addiction and religion than evil geniuses and alien invaders. Troubled, flawed and vulnerable, he's the closest thing Marvel have got to Nolan's Dark Knight and the obvious successor to his mantle as comic book character of choice for adult audiences.
Of course his previous outing has already proved a lot depends on the direction the studio decide to take him in. But Batman has shown that there's an appetite for cinemas to show the more serious side of superheroism, and now it's up to the studios to make sure that Daredevil continues to feed it.
What do you think of the proposed Daredevil reboot? Let us know your thoughts in the comments section below.