Will it wipe out the mixed feelings from 2003's Ben Affleck starring take on the blind superhero? And more importantly, will it successfully help kick off the series of shows the companies have planned over the next few years, including "Luke Cage," "Jessica Jones" and "Iron Fist" - all leading to an "Avengers" style team-up called "The Defenders?"
Before that, though, Marvel TV head Jeph Loeb took a moment to shut down some rumors. Though he noted they wouldn't be talking about other series down the road, he added, "There's an awful lot of stuff out there on the internet on Jessica Jones and Luke Cage. Neither one of those roles have been cast."
Then we watched the first scene, where Karen Page (Deborah Ann Woll) is attacked by a thug – only for that thug to be attacked by Matt Murdock decked out in black clothing, and a half mask/hat over his eyes.
The scene wasn't hyper-stylized, but did have an air of the comic booky (Loeb noted it was based in part of artist John Romita Jr.'s work on the character), with Murdock fighting in and out of shadows, eventually crashing through a window to the alleyway below.
Courtesy of Netflix © 2014 Netflix, Inc. All Rights Reserved.
Then several actors were brought out – including newly announced guest stars playing the villainous Owl (Bob Gunton), newsman Ben Urich (Vondie Curtis Hall), Kingpin's right hand man Wesley (Toby Leonard Moore), and The Kingpin's wife Vanessa Fisk (Ayelet Zurer)… But before bringing out star Charlie Cox, though, Loeb told a very sweet story about Marvel's Joe Quesada calling Loeb back before Marvel had the rights to the character, and telling him that without a doubt he had, "Found Matt Murdock."
Turns out, that's the guy they got, too!
With the cast all on stage, Loeb revealed a second clip, and the news that Rosario Dawson would be playing Marvel character Clair Temple, The Night Nurse. The clip picked up right where the last left off, with Murdock on Dawson's couch recovering from a knife wound. Again, the clip was very noir-inflected, with Dawson and Cox unwilling to give up each other's secrets.
Back to the stage, showrunner Steven DeKnight noted that back when he and Loeb were working on "Buffy The Vampire Slayer," they talked about working on "Daredevil" some day and, "doing it right." He also plugged pulling inspiration from Frank Miller and Brian Michael Bendis' runs on the title, as well as the, "dark and gritty tone."
To emphasize that, a third clip was shown where Vanessa meets Wilson Fisk (Vincent D'onofrio) for the first time. In the clip, Fisk is wearing black suit, perfectly framed from the back standing in front of a white canvas. Vanessa approaches him, and discuss how one can sell a white canvas, as well as how it makes them feel. "Alone," says Fisk looking at Vanessa with love.
"Our Fisk is a child, and he's a monster," D'Onofrio said back on stage. "Everything he does in our story comes from his foundation of morality inside of himself. Meeting Vanessa brings him out of the shadows. It's about how he becomes this iconic character everyone seems to dig."
On the flip said, DeKnight said Daredevil is, "One step away from becoming Frank Castle, from becoming The Punisher. The Kingpin is the other way. That murkiness is what I loved about the script."
Moving on to Deborah Ann Woll, Loeb noted the actress left her role on "True Blood" and the same day started shooting "Daredevil."
"She is trouble, and she loves trouble," Woll said about Matt Murdock's love interest.
Barry Wetcher © 2014 Netflix, Inc. All Rights Reserved.
Speaking of Murdock, Cox said the show is, "grounded in gritty reality, but there is the superhero element." Also of note? The reddish tinge in his hair, clearly dyed to look more like Matt Murdock. Just sayin'.
Then it was time for a fourth clip, featuring Page, Murdock and Foggy Nelson (Elden Henson). In it, we learn that Page was in prison, and bailed out by the law firm of Murdock and Nelson. A bit of a love triangle between the three was set up in the clip, as well as an important plot development: Page gets hired by the firm.
Talking about how Cox felt HBO shows (he was on "Boardwalk Empire") are different than the Netflix experience, the actor said, "You have to spend less time reminding audiences what happened, and ending an episode with a cliffhanger is fruitless, which is great. If anything else, it's going to feel like a 13 hour movie."
Asked whether there would be any crossover between ABC's "Agents Of S.H.I.E.L.D." and "Daredevil," Loeb at first differed, and then added, "I think you know, it's all connected, man" to huge cheers from the audience.
Wrapping up, Loeb teased that the scene at the beginning of the panel was only half the full fight scene. Turns out, after Murdock falls from Page's apartment, he blacks out - flashing back to a scene with his father reminding him to never stop fighting, and, "Get back to work."
The second half of the fight is a non-stop barrage of punches in the rain. The whole look is reminiscent of Frank Miller, without pushing the hyperstylization of "Sin City." Oh, and we got a touch of Daredevil's radar sense, as he hears a chain gently rapping on a pipe, and uses it to stop the thug.
And that was it! What do you think, fans? Excited for "Daredevil?"
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