Week of September 4, 2022:

World on Fire (Daredevil s1 e5) released April 10, 2015 (where to watch)
Condemned (Daredevil s1 e6) released April 10, 2015
Erik Bates | July 16, 2022

World on Fire

I'm really torn on the character development of Fisk. D'Onofrio plays a good "torn" man, but I'm not completely buying the emotion... it feels fake, and I don't know if it's because I'm not buying D'Onofrio's portrayal, or if Fisk really is putting on a front to appear more justified in his actions. Is he using the ends-justifying-means as a distraction from an actual goal of control and power, or is he being honest in his intentions?

We all knew that this would catch up with Murdock sooner or later, right?

Scott Hardie | July 21, 2022

World on Fire: Poor Elden Henson as Foggy. I don't know what's worse, the episodes where he barely does anything, or the episodes where he finally does something and it's embarrassing. I liked the contrast between three couples, Claire & Matt and Foggy & Karen and Vanessa & "Wilson," all trying to initiate relationships with their eyes open, the latter behaving considerably more grown up about it than the other two. I also liked the oner from inside the taxi; the show knows how to build tension by restricting our perspective. But very little advances the story in this hour; it's the show spinning its wheels to pad the episode count. And it makes what I consider a mistake just like the Ben Affleck movie, which is showing us what Daredevil "sees." He shouldn't really see anything at all, and should relate to the world in ways entirely other than visual; that's the point. (5/10)

Erik, regarding D'Onofrio's performance feeling fake, it's hard for me to comment because I know more of where his story goes, but I agree that the performance seems "off" in certain ways that don't add up. D'Onofrio is nothing if not idiosyncratic, so who ever knows why he makes the choices he does?

Condemned: Midway through this episode, a lightning strike took out our home Internet and network. It took us over a week to get everything back to normal and resume watching, which I think colored my perception for the better: We picked it back up during an intense moment, and from then on, I really appreciated the relentless intense pressure of this episode, though I'm still not a fan of the bloodiest extremes of the show's violence. I liked that Matt kept goofing up each attempt to sound intimidating on the call with Fisk (Daredevil's many things, but smarter than Wilson Fisk he is not), and that Foggy continued to be amusingly helpless, though Kelly is tiring of Foggy adding nothing but cringe humor to the show.

I also appreciated that the show is finally beginning to drag out into the open its central moral question about the taking of life. Has Matt gotten himself into a kill-or-be-killed conflict? Is he a hero or a fool for refusing to take a life? By way of its sub-current of Catholicism, the show is positioned to bring a different perspective to these philosophical questions than most superhero fiction, and it's maybe my favorite element of the entire series. More like this, please. (7/10)

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