FORTY YEARS OF COLLECTING DAREDEVIL: 1966-2006
So as a new month is upon us, I thought I'd weave a little Daredevil
tale for everyone.
The year is 1966, the place is the borough of The Bronx in NYC. On
March 8, the second Tuesday of the month, a 12-year-old boy is on
his way to Hebrew school for his daily bar mitzvah lesson. He stops
at the candy store around the corner from the school and checks out
the new comic books on the shelf.
One comic catches his eye. It's called Daredevil The Man Without
Fear. The cover shows Daredevil and Spider-Man over the New York
City skyline. The boy remembers reading one issue of Daredevil in
the summer of '65...it was about Daredevil being in a European
country and something about possibly regaining his eyesight. He
remembers that he liked the writing and thought the character was
kinda cool. And he knows about Spider-Man and that Marvel Comics is
kicking up the dirt around long-time giant DC.
The Bronx boy is tall for his age, and has red hair, so he feels a
certain allegiance to this Daredevil character. He buys the new
issue ...and the next one...and the next one...and he becomes a
loyal follower of the Man Without Fear. Back in those days it was a
bit easier -- and a lot cheaper! -- to buy back issues, so he's able
to get issues 1 through 15 and keep the collection intact.
The boy is so loyal, in fact, that this month he is marking the 40th
anniversary of buying issue #16 and being a lifetime collector of
As you might've guessed, that 12 year old boy was me -- now 52 years
old, with a wife and 3 kids, and I'm still going to my local comics
shop every month to pick up the latest issue. Even when we moved to
London I managed to find a shop near where I worked so that I could
It seems very fitting to me that this anniversary hits just as
Bendis and Maleev end their amazing run on the title, because I
think it ranks in the highest levels of the comic book pantheon with
the first Miller run and Stan Lee's amazing first burst of
creativity on the title -- not to mention the indelible mark that
Gene Colan left on the book.
For me, the original Colan issues were truly a high water mark in
artistic style and creativity. This is no knock on the writers who
followed Stan and the artists who preceded or followed Gene, but
over 40 years, there are moments that stick in my mind, and these
runs are the ones that do it for me.
I've seen this comic teeter on the edge of extinction more than
once, and I think it's a testament to the loyalty and love that fans
have had for DD over the years that the book has stayed alive and
continues to thrive.
So yeah, even after 40 years, I'm in it for the long haul, and can't
wait to see where Brubaker and Lark take our favorite blind attorney
So my thanks go to all those who've worked on Daredevil over the
decades for providing me -- and all of you -- 40 years of great
comic book reading.