Barry Wetcher

War comes to Hell's Kitchen, but it ends rather quickly.

April 10, 2015 at 12:10 PM EDT

Granted, we get plenty of the super when Matt overhears two detectives interrogating Piotr. Well, they’re not interrogating him so much as they’re staging a struggle and then murdering him for revealing the Kingpin’s name. When Matt attacks the one detective, he demands to know where Vladimir is, and he wants to know the connection between Fisk and the cab company. The cop says if those are the questions that he’s asking, he’s pretty clueless. To fix that, Matt takes the detective’s phone, which has—as Claire informs him—a list of locations, one of which is the restaurant where he found the captive boy in episode 2. The revelation leads to a very important moment in Matt and Claire’s budding relationship. His hunt has gone too far, and Claire fears that he’s turning into exactly the thing he’s fighting. That Claire. She’s a smart girl.

Meanwhile, Fisk is enacting his own plan to clean up the city. He’s just going about it in a completely different fashion. After a rather “embarrassing” first date with Vanessa, the Kingpin invites her out again, and they hit all of the usual small talk topics, such as “What kind of gun is that that you have in your purse?” Vanessa admits that, yes, she knows that Fisk is a dangerous man, but that risk isn’t enough to entirely scare her away. She wants a reason to hang around and see where things go. In response, Fisk swears that he takes no pleasure in the violence he perpetrates, that it’s all part of some necessary purge Hell’s Kitchen must make before he can fix the city. “It needs to die before it can be reborn,” he tells her.

Matt gets an intimate look at the purge when he tracks down Vladimir to one of the addresses listed in the phone. What he doesn’t know is that inside, the Russians have an army of men ready to take Fisk out. Vladimir knows that the Kingpin played at the very least a conspiratorial role in the murder of Anatoly, and now he wants his revenge. The Russian’s scheme hits a minor bump in the road, however, when one of Madame Gao’s blind workers delivers a bomb right to him. The blast takes out most of Vladimir’s men, but more importantly, it interrupts Karen and Foggy’s “Please touch my face moment.” (So is she into Matt?) The explosion knocks a door on top of Matt, but it barely touches Vladimir, who stumbles out of the rubble. When Matt comes to, he finds the Russian he’s been looking for, but the police bust up the party before it gets going, leaving Fisk and Vanessa left to look over all that he has accomplished.

The episode ends in a particularly dark place and alludes to many surprising things about Matt’s and Fisk’s parallel journeys. Claire warning Matt and his subsequent failure to take Vladimir without being caught by the police are two big examples of Daredevil ultimately failing. This is timed concurrently with Fisk’s biggest coup to date. In the fight to clean up Hell’s Kitchen, Fisk is doing a much better job than Matt, and that is a statement that I’ve never seen in a superhero show or movie.

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Matt Murdock, the blind superhero, gets his own television show via Netflix.
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