Marvel Knights: Defenders of the Streets by author Chuck Dixon, Illustrations Eduardo Barreto
Marvel Knights: Defenders of the Streets written by Chuck Dixon was first published in the year 2000 and it shows. It’s fast paced, loaded with bright colors, has some casual not politically correct commentary, and tons and tons of butts.
It also includes way too many characters. The main players are Daredevil and Punisher, doing their same battle of to kill or not to kill like always. Cloak and Dagger, Dagger is searching for a Cloak who has lost his memory. And Black Widow. She’s one of the butts.
But we also get cameos from Shang Chi, Moon Knight, Luke Cage, Dr Strange, and pretty much anyone else who was in New York at the time.
Too many characters is one of the biggest problems comic books like these can have. The author doesn’t know how to balance them all or how to keep them busy. Dixon’s answer in this run was to have about 4 different big conflicts going at once.
That means that each conflict lacked focus and everything got to be a big jumbled mess that didn’t get resolved by the end of the book. If the book had focused on just one story line and really developed it, it would have been much stronger than this mess. It ended up reading like a list of characters and a brainstorming session of where to put them.
I also take issue with one brief story line about Black Widow and Dagger. They need to get along and they’re both women so the obvious answer was to have them go shopping and try on clothes together. Get that tired shit away from me. We’re talking about a super spy and a woman with soul altering powers. And they go to the damn mall. Pass.
I am so glad that many comic books have evolved since this era of big muscles and pointless storylines. This book was largely forgetable when it wasn’t ridiculous and really only needs to be read if you’re a completist. Like many of us comic nerds are.
I read it as part of my ongoing attempt to read anything and everything with Daredevil in it but he was underutilized and placed in the same boring plot with Punisher I’ve seen a thousand times already. You know, the DD is lawful good and Punisher kills and therefore they can’t be friends plot.
The main redeeming factor is that the book is not boring. Marvel Knights keeps up the action if it does nothing else. So if you’re in a real rut, give it a shot and enjoy all the butts.
2/5 street signs 🛑🛑
For better Daredevil check out Daredevil End of Days
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