It’s time to return to Hell’s Kitchen. Daredevil Season 3 is officially upon us, bringing the Man Without Fear — and his arch-nemesis, Kingpin — back to New York City for another showdown.
If you’re looking to get up to speed on Marvel’s latest Netflix superhero show before you binge the whole season, here’s everything you need to know.
Warning: This story contains some spoilers for Seasons 1 and 2 of Daredevil, as well as for The Defenders.
Daredevil Season 3 launches on Oct. 19 exclusively on Netflix. The season is 13 episodes long.
After his supposed death during the battle of Midland Circle at the end of The Defenders, a much darker Matt Murdock (Charlie Cox) has made a miraculous return to Hell’s Kitchen. Season 1 big bad, Wilson Fisk (aka, the Kingpin), has been released from prison and is determined to get his revenge on Daredevil. The villain looks to be working with violent vigilante Benjamin Poindexter (Wilson Bethel) to frame the Man Without Fear as a murderer.
Daredevil Season 3 Trailer
Based on how The Defenders ended, we expect to learn a lot about Matt Murdock’s mother, Maggie Murdock (aka, Sister Maggie, played by Joanne Whalley), who looks to have an integral role in bringing Matt back from near death.
Daredevil Season 3 sees main characters Murdock, Foggy Nelson (Elden Henson), Karen Page (Deborah Ann Woll) and Fisk (Vincent D’Onofrio) all returning.
Bethel makes his series debut as classic Daredevil villain Poindexter (aka, Bullseye), while Jay Ali joins the cast as FBI agent Rahul “Ray” Nadeem. Whalley plays Daredevil’s mother, Sister Maggie, though there’s no word yet on whether Elodie Yung’s Elektra will make a comeback.
Daredevil Season 1 tells the origin story of Murdock, who is blinded by chemicals as a child and later uses his heightened senses to fight crime as a masked vigilante in Hell’s Kitchen. Murdock goes toe to toe with New York City crime boss Fisk, unraveling a massive criminal empire and eventually sending the Kingpin to prison.
Season 2 sees Daredevil go up against The Hand, an ancient clan of mysteriously powerful ninjas, while also dealing with the return of his ex-girlfriend Elektra Natchios and the appearance of murderous vigilante Frank Castle (aka, the Punisher), who serves as both friend and foe. Daredevil, Elektra and the Punisher eventually win the fight against The Hand, but Elektra dies in the battle, and her body is exhumed and placed in a mysterious resurrection device by the clan’s remaining members.
Daredevil’s story continues in crossover show The Defenders, in which Murdock teams up with Luke Cage, Danny Rand (aka, Iron Fist) and Jessica Jones to take out The Hand once and for all. The villains resurrect Elektra as the Black Sky, an evil, brainwashed assassin taking orders from Alexandra (Sigourney Weaver), the group’s mysterious leader.
After a climactic final battle in the Midland Circle building, Daredevil gets Cage, Rand and Jones to safety, but gets trapped alongside Elektra, who has come to her senses, as the building explodes around them. We later see a bruised and bloody Murdock wake up in a room full of nuns, but Elektra’s status remains a mystery.
While all of Marvel’s Netflix shows take place in the same universe, the only ones you absolutely need to watch before Daredevil Season 3 are The Defenders and the first two seasons of Daredevil. You should also check out The Punisher — not just because it’s a great show, but also because Daredevil’s Page has a prominent character arc in it, and that will likely continue in the latest season of Daredevil.
Reviews for Daredevil Season 3 have been almost universally positive. Polygon‘s Charlie Moss gave high praise to D’Onofrio’s complex, conflicted Fisk and noted that the show impressively translates the classic Daredevil “Born Again” comic story line to the small screen.
Collider‘s Vinnie Mancuso was similarly high on the show, stating that “by ditching most of the more fantastical elements and returning to the nitty-gritty of Hell’s Kitchen with the core characters that made this show great, new Daredevil Showrunner Erik Oleson has created the best Netflix Marvel season to date.” Mike Cecchini’s review for Den of Geek echoes those sentiments, stating that Season 3 feels like a return to the gritty superhero series’ roots.
In a year when the latest seasons of Luke Cage and Iron Fist garnered mixed responses, Daredevil Season 3 is shaping up to be Marvel’s first must-watch Netflix show since Jessica Jones Season 2 debuted earlier this year.
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