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CSBG Archive

A Year of Cool Comic Book Moments – Day 123

Here is the latest cool comic book moment in our year-long look at one cool comic book moment a day (in no particular order whatsoever)! Here‘s the archive of the moments posted so far!

Today we continue our look at what is most likely the greatest Daredevil story ever told, Born Again, by Frank Miller and David Mazzucchelli. It might last longer than a week, as there are a lot of cool moments, and they just keep coming with greater frequency as the series continues its slow build towards the ending.


As Daredevil #233 begins, Nuke and his helicopter support are killing innocents at random. Daredevil steps in and does his best to take out Nuke, but then the helicopter starts machine-gunning the crowd.

Daredevil takes extreme measures to stop the carnage, and then, in one of the more “out there” moments of the storyline – the Avengers show up!

Miller’s juxtaposition of the Avengers against the gritty noir feel of this storyline is just brilliant.

That is about the closest you could get (maybe Marvels?) to showing how superheroes would seem in the “real” world.

Good stuff by both Miller and Mazzucchelli.


What is this? The Avengers actually paying attention when someone is tearing up New York City? I am shocked. Simply shocked.

Next you’ll be telling me that the Human Torch realizes he could do far more good as a fire-fighter than as a super-hero.

Ah, yes, the start of what is possibly my favorite “runs” on Captain America ever.

“A soldier with a voice that could command a god…
… and does”

Still love that, but didn’t you show us that bit before?

“Miller’s juxtaposition of the Avengers against the gritty noir feel of this storyline is just brilliant.”

Like I said yesterday, I have to disagree. This is all very well written and illustrated (“raining so hard it hurts”–that feels like Thor in a way that I’ve rarely seen), making it a very cool moment on its own. And it’s brilliant in the way it shows the many different sides of the Marvel Universe, yes.

But it doesn’t belong in this story.

Brian Cronin

May 4, 2009 at 7:34 am

Still love that, but didn’t you show us that bit before?


Wonder why Iron Man feels the need to be such a d*** to Daredevil in this scene? At least Cap works somewhat politely with him later in the story. Maybe Iron Man sees DD as a “street level” guy not worth his time. Sheesh.

I think it’s interesting that Urich can hear Iron Man’s suit hum.

Stephane Savoie

May 4, 2009 at 8:14 am

I thought this approach to the Avengers very reminiscent of the JLA appearance early in Moore’s Swamp Thing run.

Brian Cronin

May 4, 2009 at 8:27 am

Totally, Stephane. Almost to the point of copying Moore’s approach.

That moment will definitely be appearing at some point!

Rob Barrett, you mention that this started your favorite run on Cap. Can anyone tell me which run this would be? I’m trying to find some Cap classics.
And yeah, Iron Man has a very condescending attitude, immediately threatening to blow him away instead of appealing to his reason. On top of that, Nuke gets out right away after the Avengers take him in, whereas DD would have probably killed him right away.

See and people say that Tony Stark was soooo out of character in Civil War. That feels just like him in that title to me.

Brian Cronin

May 4, 2009 at 8:44 am

He’s referring to Cap’s actions in the rest of the issue, Jake.

Cap’s facial expression when he see that Nuke is wearing the flag is just perfect. It speaks volumes without saying a word.

I wish Miller could still be that economical.


Huh. That’s strange, as I’ve never read the story, and I remember people talking about that particular bit…

Must have been one WEIRD dream…

Furious George

May 4, 2009 at 9:53 am

Wizard did this scene about ten years ago as one of their top Avengers moments. Maybe that’s where you saw it, Blackjak.

This is storyline is probably my favorite of all of Miller’s work. Great stuff, Brian.

@ Stephane Savoie:

Alan Moore had a run from the early ’80s until the middle of this decade in which he generated more fresh comic book ideas than anyone since Kirby. It really seemed like that made Miller better. Not just in the sense that he could swipe ideas, but that he felt the need to innovate himself.

Sadly, both could use an editor these days. Miller created a shared universe with Sin City that started promisingly and has allowed him to devolve into self-parody. Moore has done exactly the same thing with League of Extra-Ordinary Gentlemen.

Brian got it, Jake: Miller’s Cap only shows up in this issue, but it’s one of the best portrayals of Cap ever. Much like the sequence in DKR where Superman stops the Russian missile turns out to be one of the best bits of Supes writing ever.

Huh. That’s strange, as I’ve never read the story, and I remember people talking about that particular bit…

Must have been one WEIRD dream…

No, I saw it too. There was a recent post somewhere about real-world approaches to superheroes, and that last page was posted, along with something from Marvels. I thought it was here too, but it may well have been somewhere else.

Definitely wasn’t Wizard.

Pretty sure it was somewhere on CSBG…

Oh, well…

Maybe someone else on CSBG?

I always thought Mazzucchelli’s portrayal of Iron Man in front of the blazing helicopter was clunky and static when compared to Cap, Thor, DD et al on the same page. I never could figure out if it was the new armour Mazzucchelli had trouble with or he just wasn’t comfortable drawing Iron Man.

As an aside, for those who have not seen the original comic….

This issue was respectfully dedicated to Jack Kirby on the first page. It was Marvel’s 25th anniversary and I then thought it was nice for Miller to remind us that it wasn’t all about Stan Lee.

Daredevil 233 was a 30 page finale in standard 32 page comic at no extra cost (75cents/40pence then). That was nice of Ralph Macchio & Jim Shooter.

It was printed on cheap’n’nasty newsprint when all the other issues on higher quality mando paper.

I believe the last two points are related.

one of my favorite issues ever. I actually got mine signed by Frank Miller (along w/some “Dark Knight” thing he did) at a charity signing.

Yes, I t have nothing worthwhile to contribute; I just hadda say it : )

Mars Bonfire – Personally I thought that was the idea – Cap’s the super-soldier, Thor’s the God, and Iron Man’s the impersonal, clunky robot. My impression, anyhow.

more and more proof of why the story is the best daredevil. as dd relized he is not going to win with the avengers over nuke and also the caption a voice that can command a god and does. is one of the coolest things miller put in the story too bad if a movie version of born again happends that the avengers will not be able to make a cameo

I dunno, Chad. Due to how poorly received the Daredevil and Elektra movies were received (and conceived, for that matter), the Avengers cameo is probably more likely than another DD movie to begin with.

Born again should be the plot for the next daredevil movie that will never be made.

One of the best Avengers cameos ever, except for Iron Man’s attitude towards Daredevil. They had worked together before (DD was even turned to stone once while aiding Tony Stark) so it’s not like Tony has to treat Matt like the freaking Punisher. I think Miller just wanted one of the big three to play “bad cop” and Cap wasn’t going to be it.

Cap’s look at the flag on Nuke’s face after all the carnage is over, is simply heartbreaking.

I appreciate the part later where Cap asks Daredevil about Nuke. Daredevil wonders why he’s interested, and Cap simply mentions that Nuke wears the flag. Daredevil says “I hadn’t noticed,” and jumps off the roof. Cap takes this as a sign of general apathy and wonders why no one respects the colors anymore. It’s hard for the reader not to think that Daredevil is pretty rightly focused on his own terrible problems, and might be forgiven overlooking that detail, and that Cap is really being too hard on the guy.

But that’s not it at all, of course, the reader realizes a second later. Daredevil really DIDN’T notice. Daredevil is blind.

I never really liked Frank Miller until I read this book.

I can’t get too pissed at Iron Man here. A neighborhood is burning. Innocents are dying. He just saw DD blow a helicopter out of the sky. What he is saying is, “Stand down now! We got this.”

This is the Avengers through Urich’s eyes. If anyone can find ten panels that better define the Big Three Avengers, I’d love to see them.

Mazz draws Iron Man there to look like a Japanese Giant Robot, which is what that costume design was meant to evoke in the first place.

Andre Fairon

May 4, 2009 at 8:48 pm

Mars. I agree with you that the Iron Man panel’s kind of clunky. They shouldn’t have continued the ground coloring at the same level as the panel before it. it looks like one continuous picture at first. Kind of distracting. Still. Pretty great moment. One of the nice parts of the movie is the sounds Iron Man’s armor makes. I don’t think about those little sounds so much in the comics but someone not used to seeing Iro Man like Ben Urich would notice it right off. Good writing.

Thor panel’s my favorite.


May 4, 2009 at 8:56 pm

I’d just like to point out that the shot of Thor is amazing! One panel and it sums up everything umm… mighty about him.

I also think that Miller and Mazzuchelli’s short take on Capt. America is far better than Gruenwald’s entire run.
They really pulled off the “man out of time” bit that is central to Cap’s character.
Just my opinion though.

I loaned my copy of the trade paperback to somebody I used to work with, never saw it again.
I guess that’s what you get for trying to spread the word.

Thanks Brian, all of these DD moments have been outstanding.

“I also think that Miller and Mazzuchelli’s short take on Capt. America is far better than Gruenwald’s entire run.”

Um, the entire run, maybe (it did start to go bad towards the end), but not certain stories.

And yeah, I think Iron Man was supposed to appear clunky. Thor is the force of nature, and Cap appeals to Americans sense of patriotism (by that logic, the Wasp and Vision also command God with their voices ;)

First time I realized that ‘Born Again’ coincided with the Silver Centurion Iron Man era. Had to get caught up on my Iron Man, I guess. Thing is, it might be incongruent to see the Avengers in a film noir story, but as it was pointed out above, it’s not incongruent to see the Avengers show up when somebody blows up Manhattan. (well, it is, ironically, but …) You see a good noir story, it interacts with all the other good stories. Builds up the shared universe. Can’t speak for anybody else, but I liked it.

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