Daredevil’s 9 Kookiest Criminals
The Man Without Fear probably need not fear these ne’er-do-wells and one-shot wrongdoers.
The Man Without Fear’s universe bulges at the seams with big-time villains: Kingpin, Bullseye, Typhoid Mary… Their names stand as legend, of course, but what about all the costumed cut-ups in-between? What about all of his early opponents who maybe tried harder because they’re weren’t Number One, or Two, or Three, or even Fifteen?
In celebration of all things Daredevil – MAN WITHOUT FEAR #5, available now, and DAREDEVIL #1, out Wednesday, February 6 – we risked our necks at the Bar With No Name to put together dossiers on some of our favorite also-rans and wannabes, because who knows? The next time Wilson Fisk slips, these guys may find themselves at the top of the heap and ready to party.
Just goes to show that when you spend a little money on flashy clothes and a solid shtick, you may get your fifteen minutes in the spotlight. Manuel Eloganto called himself the Matador in DAREDEVIL #5, and though claiming only bullfighting and swordsmanship as super powers, he managed to make some impression on our blind hero and returned for a few more engagements.
You know him, you love him, he’s everyone’s favorite vulnerable villain with gumption to spare and a tall order of tenacity. Wilbur Day’s armor sported telescopic legs and a big blaster, and in DAREDEVIL #8 he rose above the crowd as Stilt-Man to duke it out with not only Daredevil but a host of other heroes, too… that is, until the Punisher killed him. Lady Stilt-Man, anybody?
He’s three, three, three bad guys in one! DAREDEVIL #22 introduced the Masked Marauder’s artificial man as possessing the abilities of three different thugs and being able to assume three different forms. Incredibly, the Tri-Man returned to tussle with Spider-Man and Werewolf by Night, but never did get to blow himself up in a nuclear detonation as per his instructions.
Huh, another android? In DAREDEVIL #49, Starr Saxon programmed the Plastoid to capture the Man Without Fear by using “aromagraphs” and its ability to increase in size and power as it went along. Despite all this, DD deactivated the android in their first go-round and blew him up in their second.
Then things got personal. Karen Page and Matt Murdock discovered Karen’s father had gained powers from cobalt radiation in DAREDEVIL #56, and the crazy old coot fashioned himself as a Super Villain with a mutated horse and everything. Daredevil dropped him into some molten cobalt and apologized to Karen later.
Now, this isn’t the hero of the same name; this is the gangster from DAREDEVIL #59 who thought a blaster and a razor-sharp hat brim might be enough to make a name for himself as an assassin. How did that go? This amounts to his only appearance.
We hear you: you wanted to know why Man-Bull wasn’t on this list, but would we do that to you? Bill Taurus took a serum in DAREDEVIL #78 to become a weird human-bull hybrid and snorted his way to fame and fortune… sort of. He’s probably best known for winding up in several different villain groups, but why he avoided an obvious team-up with the Matador is beyond us.
The Blue Talon
Once upon a time, martial arts stood as one of the biggest fads ever, and so in DAREDEVIL #92 a kung fu-type named Yamura took on an assignment from Damon Dran to kill Daredevil. Problem was, he didn’t end up fighting the real DD, but none other than the Black Panther disguised as DD. One gas main explosion later and you’d be able to write that story yourself.
Madame McEvil’s Terrible Trio
Bear with us—after this one, we couldn’t possibly top it. The heroine Moondragon once paraded around under the nefarious name of McEvil and assembled a clutch of criminals to do her bidding. The trio consisted of DAREDEVIL #97’s Dark Messiah, DAREDEVIL #100’s Angar the Screamer, and DAREDEVIL #103’s Ramrod. Together they blasted away at the Man Without Fear with energy bursts, hallucinatory shouts, and a steel-capped skull, but are they remembered today? They are not. You be the judge of whether or not it’s fair.
MAN WITHOUT FEAR #5, written by Jed MacKay with art by Danilo Beyruth, is available now!
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