Daredevil #155-157 (November 1978-March 1979)

These three issues of Daredevil feature Captain America alongside the Avengers—including the Black Widow, who reunites with her old flame Daredevil while he’s having some issues of his own (as he often does). Cap’s involvement is scant but surprisingly significant, and if this Winghead post gets you interested in Hornhead, all the better! (I’ll link to some terrific Daredevil resources at the end.)

For most of issue #155—drawn by familiar names from Cap’s own title and Invaders, Frank Robbins and Frank Springer—we see Daredevil experiencing some disorientation and headaches due to a recent concussion, which affects him both as he swings about the city and as he goes to work at his law office with best friend Foggy Nelson. (Notable event: Matt and Foggy hire a new office assistant, Becky Blake, who will go on to be a major character in the Daredevil world for decades to come; by 2007, she will have earned a law degree and joined the firm.)

Meanwhile, Cap and the Beast reconnect with their old friends and teammates Black Widow and Hercules, whose own band has just broken up. Cap is welcoming, as we would expect, but their reverie is interrupted by an intruder…

dd155a

…who is none other than Daredevil, seemingly out of his head after hearing that the Black Widow is back in town, and willing to fight all four heroes to confront her. And he does a fine job of it, for the most part, exploiting the darkness that gives him a natural advantage (and hides his identity).

Below, we see him redirect Cap’s shield against Hercules, and then demonstrate how his enhanced senses make him such a formidable opponent as he tosses the famous judo instructor around.

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Naturally, Natasha is the first to recognize her former partner, but must be thinking that he took their break-up really badly.

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Happily, she learns the truth behind his maniacal behavior in issue #156, which (along with the next issue) is drawn by Gene Colan, another guy more than familiar with Cap.

dd156a

Wait a minute… what is that I see at the top of that page? Is that… yes, it is…

america's ass

While Cap’s laid out buns up, Daredevil once again avails himself of the mighty shield, this time using it against Natasha…

dd156b

…before he comes to his senses and collapses into unconsciousness. A revived Cap rushes to his aid and joins the Widow in defending the fallen hero, showing his forgiveness, compassion, and generosity of spirit. (Take that, Hank!)

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When the heroes get Daredevil to the hospital, they learn of Matt’s concussion as well as his current state, which Natasha and Hercules both take hard but in very different ways.

dd156d

“You may be a god, but I think I am,” says the doctor. Because doctors all think… oh, never mind. (Tough room.)

Cap tries to calm Herc down, and Herc does the same for Natasha, but she steers things in a more theological direction.

dd156e

(For his part, he counters that he has lost many mortal friends, so he is familiar with death in his own way.)

To make matters worse for the star of the book, as issue #157 opens we see that the Night-Slayer (with his touch of death) pays Matt a visit…

dd157a

…but that deadly hand meets an equally dangerous shield courtesy of you-know-you, who is ready with a speech as well.

dd157b

Cap cautions his fellow Avengers to be careful, but the Beast pays him no heed, and Daredevil has to drag himself out of bed to save his furry friend.

dd157c

Mr. Hand decides he’s had enough and flees, leaving Matt and Natasha to have a proper reunion… much to the consternation of a certain Greek god (which does not surprise Cap in the least).

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Always nice to know Cap keeps up on the office gossip. (For the record, the reunion is short-lived, as Matt is otherwise involved with socialite Heather Glenn. But I’m sure Cap knew that too.)

Daredevil was not at his best in this story, but if you liked what you saw of him nonetheless, check out some of the fantastic websites dedicated to him, including The Other Murdock Papers and Man without Fear. If books are more up your alley, check out The Devil Is In the Details, edited by Ryan K. Lindsay, Daredevil Psychology, edited by Travis Langley, and Frank Miller’s Daredevil and the Ends of Heroism, written by Paul Young. (Speaking of Mr. Miller, he started penciling the title with the next issue, #159, and would start writing it as well as with issue #168, which introduced Elektra.)


ISSUE DETAILS

Daredevil (vol. 1) #155, November 1978: Roger McKenzie (writer), Frank Robbins (pencils), Frank Springer (inks), Bob Sharen (colors), Gaspar Saladino and Denise Wohl (letters). (More details at Marvel Database.)

Daredevil (vol. 1) #156, January 1979: Roger McKenzie (writer), Gene Colan (pencils), Klaus Janson (inks), Francoise Mouly (colors), Gaspar Saladino and Elaine Heinl (letters). (More details at Marvel Database.)

Daredevil (vol. 1) #157, March 1979: Mary Jo Duffy and Roger McKenzie (writers), Gene Colan (pencils), Klaus Janson (inks), Glynis Wein (colors), Joe Rosen (letters). (More details at Marvel Database.)

As of the time of posting, the only place these comics are available, physically or digitally, is in the back-issue bins and the forthcoming Marvel Masterworks: Daredevil Volume 14.


LAST ISSUE: Daredevil #43 (August 1968)

ALSO THESE MONTHS: Captain America #227 (November 1978), Avengers #177-178 (November-December 1978), Invaders #34-37 (November 1978-February 1979), Captain America #228 (December 1978), Amazing Spider-Man #187 (December 1978), Captain America #229-230 and The Incredible Hulk #232 (January-February 1979), and Captain America #231, Avengers #181, Invaders #38, and Black Panther #14 (March 1979)

NEXT ISSUE: Daredevil #164 (May 1980)

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