Daredevil continues its phenomenal start from Episode One with another, equally strong second. Cut Man takes a slightly different tack compared to the previous episode, but that makes it feel even stronger.
Dawson’s character takes on the role of the confidant, privy to some of the more gritty aspects of Murdock’s vigilantism as she goes about tending his wounds. The reveal of the hero’s identity allows the show to play upon the traditional tropes that manifest throughout the genre. The fact that Claire knows the face beneath the mask, but not the person, sets up an interesting storyline for the future episodes.
Littered throughout the episode are flashbacks to Murdock as a young boy, and his upbringing with his father. The father-son bond is firmly established, with Murdock sewing up his father’s wounds to mirror his interactions in the present day with Claire. It also shows his father’s changing attitudes to life after Murdock is blinded, forgoing opportunities to make some extra cash through rigging fights, and ultimately paying the price. It is his teachings that help put Murdock on the path to cleaning up Hell’s Kitchen. The moments between the two are touching and provide a break from the main plot.
Whilst the episode took its time to tell the story, the final scene, done seemingly in a single shot, manages to show a beautifully choreographed fight sequence against a group of Russian gangsters. If the quality of the remaining episodes can match this sequence, there is very little to worry about for the future series set within Hell’s Kitchen.
Cut Man is a fantastic second episode for Daredevil. The character arcs are well developed and the seeds of future story lines are enticingly laid down.