Monday, May 18, 2015

Comics Rant: Daredevil #172

Written and Art by: Frank Miller
Inks by: Klaus Janson

    Now we open up inside the water pipe that Daredevil was tossed in while unconscious. By the skin of his teeth, Daredevil makes it to the end of the tunnel, however he's still underground. He finds his way up to the concrete jungle and heads to the very bar he helped shake up the night before. There he finds Turk, the thug who made the call to drown him, Daredevil confronts him and tells him he's not mad, just curious. He wants this guy to spill the complete and total can of beans about organized crime in New York and out of nothing but fear, Turk complies. After he fills in Matt on everything that's been going on with Fisk, he decides its time once and for all to put a stop to the Kingpin of crime before things get too out of hand. He also lets Turk know that he's done working for the Kingpin, he has a new boss, and he's the man without fear.

    In another part of the city, the Kingpin finally has his plan. All the gangs that have been fighting for control of New York were all working under Fisk at one point or another before he left to Japan. Now that he's back, they haven't stopped fighting and come back to work for their rightful employer. The Kingpin is getting ready for just this, however, and he's got a plan for taking down these smaller mobs one at a time. Even if it means turning the gangs against each other, killing off informants and anything else you may think of that you've seen in a Western classic film staring the one and only Clint Eastwood. On the other side of town, another meeting is being held in a dark conference room. The men who want the Kingpin dead are now sitting with Bullseye. He charges them more money since now he doesn't have to only kill Fisk, but FIND Fisk. Yet again, we're taken across the city and we see the Kingpin training in his private gym. His idea of training is just punching a bunch of dudes in the head. Turk eventually busts in and tells the Kingpin that the Daredevil is after him, but Fisk didn't ask how he knew that. This could be Fisk just knowing he was lying (which he wasn't, but we mean lying about the whole spy to the government thing) and get really harsh on him. Like crying every night to sleep horrid. After the commotion of that, Fisk sends four men to go underground to place the real files in a different safe in another room while Fisk sets up a trap in the first one. Its downstairs in the long dark hallways that Daredevil finds a way to cut the electricity and now has the advantage in the dark. Daredevil leaves the broken men to nothing but the bums and scalpers waiting for them when they come to from the ass whooping from Daredevil.

    Another jump across the city brings us to the Kingpins secret underground hangout where Bullseye has totally snuck into. He and his men have rigged this giant gun to punch a hole in a wall so they can make their way in which they do and all seems to be going well until the ceiling begins to cave in! Naturally this pisses him off to the point where its everyone's fault except his own, naturally. After a bit of yelling, the Kingpin himself walks into the room. He tells Bullseye's men, since he doesn't even know Bullseye is in the room, that all of their men who were on lookout have been spoken to. The smart ones now work for Kingpin, the others are dead. Fisk sits down with the men and talks everything from employment opportunities, Bullseye himself, and all that jazz. The entire time, Bullseye has a gun pointed at the back of the Kingpin's head but never pulls the trigger. Instead, he puts the gun down and reveals he's been working for the Kingpin the entire time. Fisk doesn't even want these men dead, he's prepared written confessions and is having them all sign them and put themselves away under an obvious threat of death, of course. Alone in the room, Fisk calls for his right hand man Lynch. Upon arrival, Fisk begins to beat the ever living hell out of him, blaming him for the death of his wife. He tells Lynch that he knows all Lynch wanted was for Fisk to become the Kingpin again and he knew the only thing stopping him was Vanessa, so Vanessa was eliminated. He continues to beat Lynch until the very desk Fisk was sitting at is nothing but splinters from being hit so much. Lynch is dead, Vanessa is dead, all that's life is the Devil.

     The lights in the entire building get cut and immediately they know its Daredevil. Bullseye lets Fisk know the kill won't cost him a dime since its personal, and then heads to the basement where the generator for the building is. Down there, Bullseye finds the generator and turns it on to find Daredevil standing in front of him. Daredevil tells Bullseye that he WANTS him to see the fight. He WANTS Bullseye to know exactly what this means to the both of them. And then the fight begins. Both men give it all they got, even using each other's weapons against each other. The fight ends when both men on the floor are just choking each other out. It looks like something straight out of that 50 Shades series of books. No man wins nor loses because Kingpin and his men end up surrounding the fight. The Kingpin offers Matt a sort of deal. He'll hand over the files and Matt will be free to take it to any district attorney he wants, the arrest warrants will be place, and Daredevil will have single handedly helped eliminate the Kingpin's competition. He'll even throw in Bullseye as an added gift to hand over to police. Its just not worth it in the end, and Daredevil takes Bullseye and the files and leaves the building untouched. The epilogue of this issue is very intense. It goes back to the destruction from the previous issue where we thought Vanessa had died only to learn that she didn't. She has moved on under ground from the collapsed building and has become one of the beggars down in the sewers. She walks the shallow waters just whispering "Money for food.".

    Whoa, talk about intense man! This was our first look at the ever lasting fight between the man without fear and Wilson Fisk, The Kingpin of Crime in New York City. As I said before, these Frank Millar issues are really laying the ground work for many writers and how comics get written today. One thing that stood out about this particular issue was the detail in the art work. There were some panels of just faces and it didn't look like art from the 80's, it looked like early 00's work. It looked real, detailed, strong. Miller is a master of his many crafts and I'm stoked to see where the rest of this book is going, what other stories he has to tell and who else will be making appearances in this book. Until next time!!!

-Matt Milanes

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