Following in the chaos of The Hand’s raid on Metro General which bookended this episode and the last, the Daredevil and The Punisher found themselves fighting on the same side in pursuit of the enigmatic Blacksmith.
What could have just been a little action sequence and end to the conflict of The Hand’s prisoners instead held serious ramifications for Claire, which was a smart decision. Seeing the corruption at stake in city council, particularly that one higher-up who was on the phone, shows that to some extent the city knows they don’t want to mess with The Hand. Sweeping it all under the rug and out of sight is disturbing, and while Claire’s boss’ hands were tied, the frustration is completely understandable. Like she said to Matt, they are way in over their head here. This goes far deeper than anyone realizes so far, but considering there are only two episodes left, the intrigue of the mystery is beginning to wear off.
Whatever The Hand’s endgame is here, it seems to have been accomplished. The odd coccoon of sorts which the prisoner’s blood was drained into is “complete” and a whole other kind of devil is prepped and ready to be unleashed upon the world. This is the kind of high-stakes threat that fits more in line with the rest of the MCU and feels decidedly different from the previous low-level conflicts in these Netflix shows. Also of note with The Hand conflict (assuming they are in league with the Blacksmith as we are led to believe) is that Madame Gao and Nobu would seem to be on opposing teams now, after the dissolution of Wilson Fisk’s crime empire.
Speaking of former allies turning against another, Elektra carving her way toward Stick stands out as being disconnected from the rest of the events on display. The Elektra material had this feeling from the start, but after Matt shunned her I find it hard to care about the differences her and her former boss are having, much less understanding why Stick sent Jacques to kill her in the first place. With Matt on the way and Elektra’s wording that they “needed to talk” could imply that they do come to an agreement, but something tells me this isn’t the case.
This was truly Frank’s time to shine however. The relationship between Karen and Frank due to their dubious moral codes is fantastic, and the scenes the two shared are some of the best. As badass as it is to see some goons get Franked, Jon Bernthal’s best material with the character is the emotional moments. Speaking of love, and how it’s all about pain, is a strong indicator of just what kind of man he was before this. You get the sense that Frank truly cares about Karen’s happiness; while simultaneously using her as bait to lure in The Blacksmith’s goons. Karen has killed before, perhaps even twice, but bearing witness to the force of nature that is The Punisher firsthand clearly showed how Matt isn’t the only one who’s in deep over their head.
With both Daredevil and Punisher meeting in the field for the first time since his arrest, it was great to see the two pick up just where they left off. That short fight before realizing they both knew they didn’t need to, that uneasy alliance, and even Matt saying that perhaps his way isn’t the way to go. Even though they might not see eye to eye about the value of a human life, they do see that they are two very different tools forged for two very different purposes. Hopefully we’ll see the duo come to terms with this more formally (because come on, Frank didn’t die there) before the season wraps up.
For my review of the previous episode of Daredevil, “.380.” click here.