ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel
  • »
  • Books, Literature, and Writing

Daredevil Visionaries: Frank Miller A Marvel Comic Book Review of the Complete Elektra Saga!

Updated on October 27, 2014

Frank Miller: Elevating Daredevil to Greatness!

Daredevil Visionaries: Frank Miller Vol. 2 collects issues 168-182 of the original Daredevil series. Issue 168 was the first comic of the series that Miller both wrote and drew. More importantly the issue introduced Elektra, the ninja assassin who had once been Daredevil's girlfriend. The 15 issues in this volume contain her first full saga, making it a very satisfying collection.

Daredevil Comics
Daredevil Comics

Miller Tells the Story of Elektra, the Ninja Assassin!

Introducing Gritty Storytelling to Daredevil

Daredevil was a second-tier character being published bimonthly when Frank Miller began to attract attention to the comic after becoming the artist on issue No. 158. When he took as writer as well with No. 168 the series just exploded.

Right off the bat he introduced Elektra, the ninja assassin who had once been Daredevil's lover. The first issue of this collection sets the tone and pace for the entire volume. There's gritty street violence, gangsters, ninjas, acrobatic fighting, death and a sense that not all is good with this world.

Elektra would become increasing important over the next 14 issues and beyond, but the highlight of her original saga is issue No. 181, which contains one of the most gripping fight scenes I've ever read. This volume collects the story that changed Daredevil to one of Marvel Comics' most popular superheroes.

The illustration to the right is from issue 176, included in this volume.

Buy Daredevil Visionaries: Frank Miller Vol. 2 on Amazon

Daredevil Elektra
Daredevil Elektra

Elektra, The World's Most Lethal Woman

Frank MIller's Greatest Creation

Elektra is introduced in issue No. 168 when she breaks up a fight Daredevil is having with some low-level criminals, knocking him out with a well-placed sai. But he hears her voice and is taken back to his college days when alter ego Matt Murdock meets her and falls in love. Her father is killed, and she runs away, resurfacing all these years later as a mercenary and assassin.

It's a great introduction, and from the start Elektra is captivating.

Over the next 13 issues she'll resurface, helping Daredevil on occasion and replacing Bullseye as the Kingpin's main hitman. That provokes Bullseye to break out of prison, and the confrontation between Bullseye and Elektra in issue No. 181 is just plain stunning. It's as powerful today as it was 30 years ago when I first read it.

The final issue in this collection has Daredevil trying to cope with the events of issue No. 181, and has more depth than almost any comic book that came out at the time. It ratcheted up the emotional impact of everything that happened to Daredevil since Miller took over, and set the stage for following storylines dealing with his emotional psyche. This is storytelling at its finest.

The illustration is from this collection, showing the cover of Daredevil 168 complete with the misspelling of Elektra's name!

Should Elektra Have Been Revived? - Did That Ruin The Drama of Issue 181?

The fifteen issues from the debut of Elektra to the effect her death has on Daredevil in the days following her murder was one of the most powerful sagas I can remember reading in comics at that time. It was more powerful than the death of the Phoenix in the X-Men, because Jean Grey committed suicide while Elektra was murdered! Though Elektra's death originally was supposed to be final, she underwent a resurrection like many other supposedly ''dead'' comic characters do (including Jean Grey!). Do you think Elektra should have been revived?

Do you think Elektra should have been revived?

Yes, she's too great a character!

Yes, she's too great a character!

Submit a Comment

  • Tanya Jones 3 years ago from Texas USA

    Yes, I do.

No, it ruined the emotional impact of the Daredevil stories for me!

Submit a Comment

  • anonymous 4 years ago

    noooooooooooo

  • Fox Music 4 years ago

    It's not a soap opera, you just can't resurrect the dead when the feeling moves you for a cheap plot twist.

  • FloridaDino 5 years ago

    No, it cheapens the previous storyline for me. I like the fact the resurrection 'purified' Elektra! But dead should be dead

  • lyttlehalfpint 5 years ago from Canada

    She was a great character, but once its decided to kill her off (or any character), they need to honour it. Any time they bring them back it cheapens them and they, in my opinion, never attain the same level of interest as before. They become the movie that ended on a dream.

Daredevil Bullseye Kingpin
Daredevil Bullseye Kingpin

Bullseye and the Kingpin

Reinventing Two Mediocre Bad Guys

Both Bullseye and the Kingpin existed in the Marvel Universe before Frank Miller reinvented the characters in his run on Daredevil. I remember when Bullseye first appeared in Daredevil No. 131 and thought he could be kind of cool, but his first few appearances really weren't anything special.

When Roger McKenzie reintroduced him in issue No. 159 (with art by Miller) the character became more complicated but still very much a secondary one. Only with issue No. 169 did Bullseye really start to become the deadly villain he always had the potential to be. Miller made him dangerous but also very psychotic and obsessive, willing to kill just about anyone. Miller also used Bullseye to force Daredevil to re-evaluate his views on right and wrong and his view on the comic-book tradition that heroes never kill.

The comic-book panel to the right is from issue No. 181, as reproduced in this volume.

Kingpin had debuted many years earlier in Amazing Spider-man issue No. 50. He had never been a top-level villain in that series, mainly because Spider-Man had so many great foes that the Kingpin kind of got lost in the shuffle. Because he lacked any superpowers he also just didn't seem to fit in well.

Then Miller brought him into the street-level violence of Daredevil, and everything clicked. Now the Kingpin is seen as one of Marvel Comics' top villains, and deservedly so.

Frank Miller's Debut as Daredevil's Artist

Daredevil Visionaries: Volume 1

The first volume of the Daredevil Visionaries series contains Miller's debut as Daredevil's artist in issue No. 158. For more on this volume, please see our review here:

Daredevil Visionaries: Frank Miller Brings Greatness to the Marvel Comics' Superhero!
Daredevil Visionaries: Frank Miller Volume 1 contains the first nine stories that Miller drew of Daredevil in the late 1970s (issues 158-161, 163-167). Bring...

Frank Miller, Batman and Sin City

Writer and Film Director

Frank Miller, born in 1957, went on to many successes after Daredevil, including his own graphic novels Ronin, Sin City and 300. Batman: The Dark Knight Returns from 1986 moved the comic industry toward darker characters and themes, and is widely considered one of the greatest superhero graphic novels. Several of his works have been made into movies, with 300 very successful and Sin City pretty good. He also directed a film version of The Spirit which was pretty much panned. For more on the artist see: Frank Miller.

Frank Miller Talking About Daredevil - From the documentary The Men Without Fear

Here is a clip of Frank Miller talking about his views on Daredevil, from the documentary ''The Men Without Fear: Creating Daredevil. In this clip, Miller explains what first attracted him to the character and, among other things, why Daredevil is a Catholic.

Before Miller, There Was Gene Colan

Daredevil's First Great Artist!

Before Frank Miller reinvigorated Daredevil, the comic had a run of great artwork by Gene Colan. Colan drew Daredevil from issue No. 20 to issue No. 100, rarely missing an issue. He was cinematic artist, known for scenes that created moods like none other. Sadly, he died on June 23, 2011. I wrote an appreciation of Gene Colan as a separate lens, so please visit it if you are interested in learning more about an artist that also helped define Daredevil's look.

Gene Colan, Comic Book Artist: An Appreciation
Gene Colan developed such a moody, cinematic style during his six decades as a comic book artist that his work was as easily identified as the art of Jack Ki...

Our Comic Book Reviews - Ghost Rider, X-Men, the Avengers and Many More!

Captain America in the 1960s: A Marvel Comic Book Review
Marvel Essential Captain America Volume 1 reprints Captain America's stories from Tales of Suspense No. 59-99 as well as the first three issues of the newly-...

The Ghost Rider Debuts! A Marvel Comic Book Review
The Marvel Essential series contains four volumes devoted to the Ghost Rider superhero, who first appeared in 1972 in a comic book called Marvel Spotlight. H...

X-Men
X-Men: The Dark Phoenix Saga collects issues No. 129-137 of the original X-Men comic-book series, a series of tales that ends with the final battle over Jean...

The Avengers in the Late 1960s: A Marvel Comics Review!
Marvel Essential: Avengers Vol. 3 contains issues 47 to 68 of the comic's original series, as well as Avengers Annual No. 2. For the most part this collectio...

Marvel Essential Fantastic Four Comic Book Review: Dr. Doom and Daredevil Guest Star as the Legend Grows!
The Fantastic Four rocked the comic-book world when it debuted in 1961, with writer Stan Lee and artist Jack Kirby introducing more characterization and real...

The Avengers Debut! A Comic Book Review of the Marvel Masterworks Collection!
The Avengers Volume 1 was one of the first four collections when Marvel Comics began publishing its Marvel Masterworks series in 1987. Since then the company...

The Rampaging Hulk Marvel Essential Comic Book Review
Marvel Essential: The Rampaging Hulk 1 is a collection of Hulk stories from his short-lived late 1970s magazine. This volume includes the tales from issues 1...

Captain America
Marvel Masterworks: Captain America Volume 1 reprints the superhero's adventures in Tales of Suspense No. 59-81 in full color. This was Captain America's fir...

Darwyn Cooke
DC: The New Frontier was a series of six comic book issues in 2004 that focused on the 1950s, when many of the major superheroes that populate the modern DC ...

Spider-Man in the 1970s! A Marvel Comics Book Review
The Essential Spider-Man Vol. 8 contains issues No. 161-185 of the Amazing Spider-Man series, plus Nova issue No. 12 and the Amazing Spider-Man Annual No. 11...

Essential Iron Fist: A Marvel Comic Book Review!
Essential Iron Fist Volume 1 collects the first four years' worth of Marvel comics starring the character, who debuted in 1974 during a martial arts craze. T...

The Amazing Spider-Man Debuts! A Marvel Masterworks Comic Book Review
Marvel Comics began publishing its Marvel Masterworks series in 1987 with The Amazing Spider-Man Vol. 1, among others. Since then the company has come out wi...

Marvel Essential X-Men Comic Book Review: Wolverine, Storm and a Return to Greatness!
Marvel Essential X-Men collects Giant-Size X-Men 1 and X-Men 94-119. Giant-Size X-Men No. 1 introduced the new team of superheroes, reviving the X-Men comic....

X-Men Reborn in the 1970s: Storm and Nightcrawler Debut, plus Wolverine!
Marvel Masterworks: The Uncanny X-Men Vol. 1 highlights the rebirth of the team in 1975-1976, reprinting Giant-Size X-Men No. 1 and X-Men No. 94-100. Promote...

Comic Book Heaven Found in Baltimore!

Geppi's Entertainment Museum

If you are ever in Baltimore you need to set aside time to visit Geppi's, located near the baseball stadium near the Inner Harbor. The museum, founded by the head of Diamond Comics Distributors, has one of the best comic-book collections on display that I have ever seen. I wrote a review of the museum that you can check out in the following lens. The museum is definitely worth a visit!

Geppi's Entertainment Museum in Baltimore: A Tourist's Guide to Comic Book Heaven!
Geppi's Entertainment Museum is located in Baltimore and is dedicated to all sorts of American pop culture: comic books, television, radio, movies, magazines...

Spider-Man, Fantastic Four and Thor! - More Comic Book Reviews

Spider-Man's Earliest Adventures: A Review of Marvel Comics' Essential Spider-Man Vol. 1
Marvel Essential Spider-Man Volume 1 contains the debut story of Marvel Comics' most-popular character, who first appeared 50 years ago in the summer of 1962...

Marvel Essential Fantastic Four: Galactus, Silver Surfer and the Black Panther Debut!
Marvel Essential Fantastic Four Vol. 3 contains perhaps the most-sustained run of great comic book stories of the 1960s. This collection of Fantastic Four No...

The Mighty Thor Debuts: Highlights of His First Marvel Masterworks Collection
Thor, one of Marvel Comics' mightiest heroes, debuted 50 years ago in a comic book called Journey into Mystery. One of the Marvel Universe's earliest charact...

Spider-Man Co-Creator Steve Ditko: Strange and Stranger Book Review
Strange and Stranger: the World of Steve Ditko was published in 2008 by Fantagraphics Books. Author Blake Bell traces the life story of this legendary and re...

Peter Parker, The Spectacular Spider-Man: A Review of the 1970s Marvel Comics Series!
Peter Parker, The Spectacular Spider-Man first appeared at the end of 1976, and was a comic book aimed at cashing in on the growing popularity of Spider-Man....

The Fantastic Four Debuts! A Marvel Essentials Comic Book Review
The Essential Fantastic Four Volume 1 contains some of the most important stories that Marvel Comics ever published. This book contains the first 20 issues o...

Joe Kubert, Comic Book Artist: An Appreciation
Comic book artist Joe Kubert died on Aug. 12, 2012, after more than seven decades of drawing and creating comic books. Over those many years he worked on a w...

The X-Men in the Early 1970s: Neal Adams' Dynamic Art
Marvel Essential Classic X-Men volume 3 is a real hodge-podge of stories that shows just how far below the radar screen the original X-Men had fallen in the ...

Of Comic Books and Family Vacations - About Goldenrulecomics

Of Comic Books and Family Vacations: Who is GoldenRuleComics?
Who is GoldenRuleComics? Actually, the better question is who ARE GoldenRuleComics! I am the father of a teenage daughter, and we live in New Jersey. I hand...

What do you think of Frank Miller, Daredevil, Elektra, comic books or anything else related to this lens?

What do You Think? - Here's You Chance to Speak Up!

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    • Hairdresser007 profile image

      James Jordan 3 years ago from Burbank, CA

      I actually remember some of these

    • Arachnea profile image

      Tanya Jones 3 years ago from Texas USA

      You do a great job reviewing this series. Also, someone relatively unfamiliar with the series will have no trouble following it. Saw your link in projectresolute's book review post in the forum.

    • profile image

      anonymous 3 years ago

      Frank Miller always had something special to every story he ever touched. One heck of a talent!

    • KathyZ1 profile image

      KathyZ1 3 years ago

      Useful lens. Thanks for your sharing.

    • profile image

      GuitarTrainer 4 years ago

      I came to know about Daredevil through the movie. Though the movie was disappointing, I enjoy the comics!

    • Siclone profile image

      Simon 4 years ago from NSW, Australia

      I've enjoyed all the Frank Miller work I've read, great lens, thanks!

    • Fox Music profile image

      Fox Music 4 years ago

      Thanks for sharing this fantastic lens "Daredevil Visionaries: Frank Miller A Marvel Comic Book Review of The Complete Elektra Saga!"

    • TrashBoat profile image

      TrashBoat 5 years ago

      It's a shame Frank Miller went crazy. By this I don't mean his political views, just that he seems to have become a parody of himself. His last book 'Holy Terror' pales in comparison to his 80s and 90s stuff.

    • FloridaDino profile image

      FloridaDino 5 years ago

      Great lens. The Frank Miller Daredevil stuff is among the most prized in my collection, almost perfect for me.

    • lyttlehalfpint profile image

      lyttlehalfpint 5 years ago from Canada

      I have a few old comics I genuinely loved and read ragged, but kept them still, not so much for monetary value as much as personal value.

    • julietarot lm profile image

      julietarot lm 6 years ago

      Love Frank Millers stuff.I've enjoyed this lens.