Season 3 Episode 1
Matt Murdock is in a bad place physically and emotionally in the first episode of the third season. We witness how he escaped the explosion at Midland Circle in the aftermath of The Defenders and the long road to being him back from the brink of death begins with his old friend Father Lantom and a reluctant Sister Maggie taking the ailing hero in and nursing him back to health. At the same time, Wilson Fisk finds that no matter how much power he has inside prison, he’s still in prison. After finding out that getting Vanessa back into the country legally is harder than he thought, Wilson takes a bold step to secure his release.
It looks like this season is taking Daredevil and Matt Murdock back to basics. Matt is a tortured man full of pain and guilt and his actions in the episode are those of a man seeking to be punished. His sense of guilt is driving a lot of the action and it’s making him more dangerous, especially since he isn’t 100% yet. His first foray back out as Daredevil sees him to return to the black suit and his first fight is more brutal and visceral than previously. There’s less of the calculated dance and more of a brawl style of fighting which works for where Matt is emotionally.
D’Onofrio as Fisk is always engaging when he’s on screen. He continues to evoke both a calculating monster and a scared little boy often in the same moment. There is a look that he gives that is chilling because one never knows what will follow, whether some kind of profound musing or a terrifying physical attack. That uncertainty and unpredictability that D’Onofrio brings to the performance make the character more menacing.
The episode itself moves at a slower pace and that works to give the viewer a recap of where the characters are as well as introduce the conflicts that they will face going forward. The moments between Matt and Sister Maggie are some of the best and for those familiar with their connection in the comics, those moments make you crave for the reveal that fans know is coming.