Matthew Murdock
Alias(es) Matt Murdock
The Man Without Fear
Appeared in Daredevil
Status Alive
Actor Ben Affleck
Scott Terra (young)
"Hell's Kitchen is my neighborhood. I prowl the rooftops and alleyways at night, watching from the darkness. Forever in darkness. A guardian devil."
―Matt Murdock[src]

Matthew "Matt" Murdock is a blind lawyer who lived in Hell's Kitchen and took on the persona of Daredevil in order to fight crime.



As a child, Matt often got into fights with the local bullies. His father, Jack, a washed-up boxer, demanded he never fight back, for fear that Matt wouldn't amount to anything, instead insisting he study and become a doctor or a lawyer. Together they lived alone, albeit happily. One day, Matt saw Jack beating up a stranger, proving that he was operating as an enforcer for the local mob boss, Fallon, despite promising Matt that he never would. A devastated Matt ran away, blindly stumbling into the path of a forklift. Swerving to avoid him at the last second, the forklift smashed into radioactive biohazard chemicals that spilled into Matt's eyes, blinding him. He cannot see, but his other four senses obtained superhuman sharpness, and he learned to perceive his surroundings by human echolocation. Blaming himself for his son's condition, Jack returned to professional boxing to regain his dignity; he was later murdered by Fallon for refusing to throw a fight. Wilson Fisk, the man who would later be the crime don known as Kingpin, gave the final death blow to Jack. Matt promised to fight evil and avenge his father.

Years later, Murdock works as an attorney in Hell's Kitchen by day, becoming at night the vigilante known as Daredevil. As a lawyer, Matt seeks to always defend those who are innocent of any crime, spurning all other clients despite the insistence of his partner Foggy that such behavior puts their business at extreme financial risk. As Daredevil, Matt seeks out and punishes those who escape conviction in the courtroom under false pretenses. He fights crime in solitude, until he meets the martial artist Elektra Natchios. Murdock becomes infatuated with Elektra and courts her. She, eventually, comes to reciprocate his emotions. In the meantime, reporter Ben Urich, who has been investigating Daredevil, finds a clue that reveals Murdock as the vigilante.

After Elektra's father is killed by the Kingpin's assassin Bullseye, she believes the murderer to be Daredevil. Armed with two sais, she locates him and attacks, beating the reluctant Daredevil by stabbing a Sai into his left shoulder. She removes Daredevil's mask, revealing his true face; before explanations can be made, Bullseye attacks. A short battle ensues, ending when Bullseye kills Elektra with her own sai. Daredevil, severely wounded, sets out for the church where he collapsed at the beginning of the film. The church itself is Daredevil's sanctuary, concealed by Father Everett, the priest shown at the opening, who is Matthew's guide and mentor. Bullseye tracks him down and they fight, with Daredevil defeating Bullseye by throwing him through the church window, where he lands on a car.

Daredevil then goes to Fiskcorp to fight Kingpin, beating him in single combat. Here it is revealed that the Kingpin's obesity is an illusion, created by a rotund stomach and the partial concealment of heavily muscled limbs. At one point in the fight, Kingpin gains the upper hand; unable to locate him, Daredevil breaks a water-pipe, causing the water to drench and thereby outline his enemy. He gains the information by which to strike Kingpin down. Matt had earlier used this method to gain a visual image of Elektra's face, which he believed very beautiful.

Daredevil spares the Kingpin after revealing his secret identity as Matt Murdock. The Kingpin promises him that he will be released from prison eventually and that Daredevil's secret won't be safe. Matt accepts this, choosing to meet the challenge when it comes. When Kingpin threatens to reveal Murdock's identity to the underworld, Murdock counters that if he did, the Kingpin would fall into disgrace for having lost a fight to a blind man.

Throughout the film, Murdock deals with the moral implications of being a vigilante, and tries to prove that he is not a villain. His decision to spare Kingpin is a means of proving the latter to himself, on the grounds that a villain would have killed his opponent. In the last moments of the film Murdock finds a good luck charm that is similar to the one Elektra showed him, suggesting that she may still be alive. The film ends with Ben Urich, who realizes that a man like Daredevil is needed, deciding at the last moment to rewrite the article he had composed without revealing the hero's true identity, and even encouraging Murdock to carry on with his fight.


Matt appeared only in a deleted scene and not as Daredevil asking Elektra to come back and stay with him. Elektra said when she is ready. They both gave each other a hug and Elektra then woke up, got dressed and walked out towards where Abby Miller was training.

Character traits

Matt is strictly faithful to his idea of justice, and he pursues it during the day, as a lawyer, as well as during the night, as Daredevil. As a Catholic, Matt is often bound by a strong remorse, which he sublimates in his vigilante activity. He's a lady's man and often has occasional lovers.

Powers and Abilities


  • Superhuman Senses: Daredevil is blind, yet the radioactive isotopes that scarred his optical nerves sharpened all his other senses; such as hearing, smell, touch, taste, etc., to superhuman levels, as Daredevil's senses are far more greatly developed than normal humans.
    • Superhuman Hearing: Daredevil can hear a heartbeat, even from miles away.
      • Lie Detection: Daredevil can sense if someone is lying; via listening to his or her heartbeat.
    • Superhuman Smell: Daredevil can smell anything, even from miles away.
    • Superhuman Touch: Daredevil can "read" a book by touching the ink on the page.
    • Radar Sense: Daredevil possesses a special radar sense, superior to a bat's; which allows him to locate everything on his path better than every sighted individual.


  • Master Hand-To-Hand Combatant/Martial Artist: Daredevil is an excellent hand-to-hand combatant and martial artist, as he is able to go head-on against terrific combatants; such as Elektra, Bullseye and Kingpin respectively.
  • Master Stick-Fighter: Daredevil is an excellent stick-fighter; as he uses his billy club in combat.
  • Master Acrobat: Daredevil is an excellent acrobat, as he is able to perform acrobatic and gymnastic moves; such as somersaults, flips, etc., which allows him to dodge or counter almost any attack.
  • Master Lawyer: Matt is an excellent lawyer; as he runs his own law firm.


  • Daredevil Suit: Matt wears a suit as his superhero alter-ego, Daredevil, to hide his identity from his enemies, when he goes out fighting crime.
  • Expandable Batons: It functions as a a multi-purpose cane with different modes; such as two short sticks, a larger staff or grappling hook.



Behind the scenes


  • Throughout the various Daredevil comics and the film, Daredevil has had many different suits. The original is yellow and black with a large red D in the center. This suit featured a sheath on the right leg to store the cane/staff as well as red eyes. The second suit is similar to the one featured in the film except it has two inter-linking red D's painted on it. The third was created specially for the film. A particular suite is the one design for The Trial of the Incredible Hulk, which is not similar at all at the ones in the comics, having the shape of a black ninja suite with no horns or trademark symbols.
  • In the Daredevil movie, several scenes were taken shot-for-shot from the comic books, especially from Guardian Devil by Quesada.
  • In the Director's cut, Matt's catholic origins are deepened much more than in the movie, as well as his activity as a lawyer.
  • In a deleted scene from Elektra, Ben Affleck reprises his role as Matt Murdock, appearing in dream to Elektra asking her to come back to him.
  • In the comics, the accident that gave Matt his powers was where he helped an elderly blind man avoid getting run over by a truck, and that the canister with a radioactive isotope fell out of the truck and hit him.
  • As a fan of the character, Ben Affleck made a point of reading every single comic book that featured Daredevil as preparation for his role.
  • According to Ben Affleck, Daredevil was his favorite comic book hero.



See Also



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