Daredevil #190 (January 1983) Breakdown

With The Defenders hitting Netflix within a day or so, let’s break down this old school comic book issue of Marvel’s Daredevil  #190.

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In Daredevil issue #181, the titular character’s love interest Elektra fights with and is then murdered by villain Bullseye. During the season two finale of Marvel’s Netflix show Daredevil, on the other hand, Elektra is killed at the hands of… Well, the Hand. The epilog of the finale teased a future featuring the femme fatale when the organization retrieved her body from her grave. Similarly, the end of Daredevil issue #189 hinted at the Hand’s involvement in Elektra’s resurrection.

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The next issue entailed this event.

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In the prologue of the issue, Elektra is tasked with climbing a vast icy mountain as an initiation into the Chaste clan, led by Daredevil’s mentor Stick. Unfortunately, she falls. Stick trains her into a powerful warrior in spite of her failure but kicks her out due to the darkness (“pain and hate”) inside of her. Stone warns they might lose her if the enemy recruits her, but Stick says he already made his decision. Upon returning to Japan, Elektra swears to prove her value to Stick and infiltrates the enemy’s organization. The Hand puts her through a test, and before she knows it, she had killed her old Japanese master.

Cut to the present time of the issue, and she has been dead for quite some time. As Stone and Daredevil rush to the cemetery to stop the Hand from exhuming Elektra, Matt Murdock says she was “never totally evil” to which Stone replies, “Her love for you was her weakness. She fought a war with herself and lost. […] The Hand will use [her as a weapon] so we must destroy her body.” As they approach her grave, they realize it is too late and–with the help of Black Widow–wound up in a fight with the ninjas.

After the ninjas escape with Elektra’s body, Daredevil runs to Wilson Fisk for help in finding the Hand’s hideout. The Kingpin asks for a favor first: to take down the men that sought to assassinate him. Murdock does this, and in return, receives word that the Hand is holed up in an abandoned church. As the Hand starts the ceremony to revive the female warrior, Daredevil, Stone, and Black Widow storm in to stop this from happening. Stone proceeds to behead Elektra but Murdock stops him after hearing her heart beat. He then transfers his energy into her in an attempt to bring her back but fails, much to his dismay.

Right as they are surrounded by ninjas, Fisk’s henchmen save them at the last second and gun down the ninjas. Daredevil and Black Widow make their way out of the church, and Fisk stops by to reveal his intention for coming to his aid: Daredevil came to him and not the police; Kingpin and Daredevil “need each other” and “are the power in [Hell’s Kitchen].” Meanwhile, Stone realizes that Murdock cleansed Elektra’s soul. Matt and Natasha rush back into the church, only to find Stone and Elektra have gone.

In the epilog, Elektra has returned to the mountain, only this time she succeeds on climbing it.

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Who knows what Elektra’s role is in the upcoming series? Perhaps her resurrection will be explored and explained during the season. Maybe its first season will end with her on the mountain.

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Marvel’s The Defenders hits Netflix on August 18, 2017. For more Daredevil, Elektra, and The Defenders-related news and reviews, follow Geek Motivation on Twitter (@GEEKMOTIVATION) and Instagram (@geekmotivation).

Written by: John Tangalin

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