I love Daredevil and I really enjoyed Mark Waid’s run when it was coming out. I’d wanted to get the trade edition for a while, but the price had put me off. The value for money here is iffy for the casual reader, especially as the book is now out of print. I got a decent deal on eBay (originally retailed for $100, I got it for $119 vs the $130-150 it’s going for on Amazon), and I had wanted this for years so it was worth it for me as a splurge that’s staying in my library. I like that the edition is oversized, which lets you really see the art. The back has a cover gallery, some behind the scenes stuff showing you the artists’ processes, and two short interviews with Mark Waid and Paolo Rivera from other publications. Standard Marvel trade stuff.
This omnibus collects Daredevil #1-27 and a few tie-in issues from other series to give you the complete story arc. The story follows Matt Murdock/Daredevil after a truly awful time in his life when his secret identity was revealed and his life was destroyed. Now Matt is back in NYC and trying to rebuild his life. Waid decided to do a more cheerful and swashbuckling Daredevil after all the grim stories of recent years, and this series is just really fun to read. The overall story is very coherent and does a lot with the existing relationships and building new ones. Waid has a great handle on all the characters and how they interact. Paolo Rivera and Chris Samnee’s art is a particular highlight for me as well, as they did some very innovative and interesting stuff to show how Matt sees the world. I also find some of the body horror/scare type of stuff that Waid puts in to be very effective and creepy. The only thing I didn’t like was the continued fat jokes about Foggy, which are really old at this point (especially the scene where he eats a whole cheesecake with his bare hands, which was just weird and gross — Foggy isn’t a disgusting person, he knows how to use utensils!).
For new readers, I feel like some of this would be incomprehensible because of the layers of past relationships and previous events, but I do think with comics you just have to leap in and be confused at some point. This would be a good place to start in that it’s a fun Daredevil story with a clear arc. The only downside is the price due to the book being out of print, so it’s probably best to try to get it in a cheaper format or to start somewhere else. It’s a real shame because it’s one of the best Daredevil runs in years and one I’m happy to have in my library.
Warnings for: body horror, eye trauma, sex trafficking, human trafficking, murder, desecration of corpses, fat jokes