Comics

Psych Ward: Kingpin

Wilson Fisk seeks to better understand himself!

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Wilson Fisk is an adult male of immense size. He presents as composed and tightly wound, as though he were constantly holding something back. In a case of history repeating itself, he arrived at the office after hours, paid off the rest of the remaining staff to go home, and demanded this writer see him. He seemed aware of this writer breaking confidentiality following our last meeting, stated neither I nor anyone else I cared about was “in danger,” and assured me there would be no such needs to invoke Tarasoff after this session.

Interestingly, there did seem to be a shift in his presentation as the session continued—in comparison with both last time and with his demeanor at the start of session. He seemed far more interactive and far less didactic. Unlike the last session, he did not demand the writer’s silence but invited comment.

That said, there were moments were it was very clear to the writer that a line had been briefly crossed. Despite Fisk’s self-control, his body language often would give him away, showing a kind of coiled anger whenever he felt disrespected or the writer touched upon what could perhaps be best labeled “off-limits” areas—for example his relationship to his deceased wife Vanessa.

Throughout the session, however, this writer had a difficult time shaking the idea that the client was doing this session in a performative manner; as if he wanted someone else to see his willingness to attend therapy. When he left, I saw a woman with him who clearly was not part of his “muscle” nor resembled any of his former woman assassins—Elektra, Lady Bullseye, Typhoid Mary. Perhaps she was the audience?

His session also seemed to be a subtle form of intimidation despite his insistence neither I nor anyone I cared about was in danger. This was particularly evident when, as he left, he paused at the door to ask, “I respect that you are a man of principles who follows the rules of his craft regardless of personal risk That said, I trust there will be far less…phone calls that need to take place after this session?” His manner did not seem merely inquisitive.

In terms of therapeutic content, there was a shallowness to it. He spoke mostly of a desire to push back against his reputation, to find acceptance amongst the New York “elite,” and to help kids like him—raised in near poverty but still with too much income to access many city, state, and federal supports—improve their lives. He largely avoided discussions of his criminal activities beyond vaguely citing “cycles of violence” and absolutely rejected any discussion of the street vigilante Daredevil.

At the end of session, he did request further sessions. Given our prior relationship, I argued that it would most likely be counterproductive to continue to work with me. He accepted this recommendation and a referral to the offices of Doctors Matthew Rosenberg and Ben Torres on April 12 and May 10. Those referrals can be found in the KINGPIN #3 and KINGPIN #4 files, respectively.

Psy D. Candidate Tim Stevens is a Staff Therapist who reminds you that just because he is a man of size with a shaved head does not mean he “looks exactly like that Kingpin guy.”

 

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