Beware, spoilers for Marvel’s DAREDEVIL and DAREDEVIL: YELLOW!

Season 2 of Marvel’s hit Netflix series, DAREDEVIL, left the titular hero at a personal crossroad. His relationships with those closest to him, Foggy Nelson and Karen Page, are strained at best. Former lover Elektra Natchios is dead, and her body is in The Hand’s possession. With this, his encounters with The Punisher led him to confront his no-killing rule as well as doubt his contributions to combating crime in Hell’s Kitchen.

DAREDEVIL: YELLOW is a graphic novel helmed by writer Jeph Loeb and artist Tim Sale. It is a part of a series that explores the superhero’s introspective reaction to a tragedy. It is a unique, innovative work that strays from action-packed sequences in favor of detailed, poignant flashbacks that contribute to the evolution of a superhero. Ultimately, DAREDEVIL: YELLOW explores a solemn Matt Murdock, who spends the majority of the work reflecting on his relationship with the recently deceased Karen Page.

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Both the television series and the graphic novel depict the Daredevil mythos in similar fashions; because of this, I cannot help but wonder if the two mediums will intertwine through the portrayal of Karen Page’s journey as well as Matt Murdock’s personal regrets.

Art by Alex Maleev

Dear Karen, I’m Afraid

Daredevil is often referred to as “The Man Without Fear;” because of this, it is quite alarming to find that the first issue of DAREDEVIL: YELLOW opens with Daredevil acknowledging his fears. The sources of these fears are many. Explicitly, Matt is afraid because the memory of Karen Page continues to haunt him. Beyond this though, Matt fears the escalation of criminal violence. As he reflects on his superhero origins, he realizes that super-villains used to be less sinister and more arrogant and aloof. Fame rather than bloodlust motivated these villains. Regarding this, Matt states, “Villains would talk a lot back then. They did not leave innocent women in a pool of blood.”

Due to the graphic novel’s introspective nature, it does not depict much violence. Rather, the work portrays a hero who is struggling to accept the evil capabilities of human beings. On the other hand, the Netflix series has always maintained a realistic tone, never shying from showcasing gritty violence. Despite this, the Matt Murdock of the television series struggles to accept the tangibility and permanence of evil. In a tense conversation with The Punisher in season 2, he states that the reason he refuses to kill is to allow that individual a chance at redemption, no matter how small that chance may be.

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Now, if Karen Page were to be killed off in the upcoming season of DAREDEVIL, would that tragedy challenge Matt’s worldview? Sure, the character has witnessed the deaths of close companions throughout the series, including his father. However, Matt has rendered himself vulnerable around Karen. By revealing himself as Daredevil, Matt sacrifices his guard in favor of living honestly for her. Thus, her death may unbalance Matt’s moral compass since he would have encountered evil so closely. As a result, audiences may witness a wrathful Daredevil that loses his composure.

Courtesy of Netflix, Inc.

Dear Karen, I’m Daredevil

In his retrospection in DAREDEVIL: YELLOW, Matt wonders if revealing his identity to Karen earlier in their relationship would have changed the outcome of her fate. The conclusion of the graphic novel suggests that Matt accepts his inability to change the tragic events of Karen’s life. It seems as though he understands that one’s fate is inscribed in nature, completely immutable.

Now, will the third season of DAREDEVIL feature Karen’s death? Her involvement in THE PUNISHER Netflix series suggests that her role in the Marvel Cinematic Universe television series is growing. Season 2 emphasizes Karen’s evolving skills as a reporter, so her characterization is still developing. With this, it will be interesting to see the resolution between her and Matt following the revelation of his alter ego. So, regarding Karen Page’s personal narrative, I cannot see her death taking place anytime before the finale of season 3.

READ: Get the exclusive details on Daredevil and Elektra’s fiery relationship, here!

Karen’s storyline needs the development it deserves. The DAREDEVIL writers should not rush her death; they should not include her death solely for shock value. Rather, Karen’s death should only take place if her character achieves full evolution. With this, her death will contribute to a legacy that will maintain her impact on the plot and characters.

Art by Tim Sale

Dear Karen, I See Now

In the comics, Bullseye is responsible for Karen’s murder. There has been no confirmation on which Daredevil villains will appear in season 3. However, due to the omission of a substantial lead villain in season 2, Bullseye would be an ideal inclusion for the upcoming season. Perhaps Wilson Fisk will employ Bullseye’s services to take the Guardian Devil down.

Ultimately, the third season of DAREDEVIL needs a more engaging narrative than the previous season. Audience members need to see Daredevil face off against a villain that will challenge him beyond his mental and physical capabilities, similar to Fisk’s challenge in season 1. With this, the reveal of Matt’s alter ego to Karen will inevitably affect their relationship.

I believe this transparency between the two will bring them closer together. However, I believe it will also draw Karen into more danger, even though she has encountered evil face to face before. As Matt renders himself even more vulnerable to Karen — she, in turn, consumes this vulnerability since she now maintains a responsibility to protect his secret.

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It is a common trope for those who maintain a relationship with a superhero to be caught in harm’s way one too many times. I do not believe DAREDEVIL will operate any differently; so, I do not think Karen’s death will play out too soon. Though, I do believe it is a significant event in comic book history that will inevitably translate onto the small screen.

“And since we never know what is going to happen tomorrow, I wouldn’t trade all my yesterdays for the time we had together” – Jeph Loeb (DAREDEVIL: YELLOW).

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