Marvel To End ‘Daredevil’ With Issue #36
Daredevil artist Chris Samnee revealed his cover art for issue #36 via Twitter today, simultaneously announcing that the issue would be the series' last. As yet there's no word as to why the title is ending, but if recent history is any indication, and you're one for making guesses, it seems likely that this issue will very soon be followed by an all new Daredevil #1.
When the newly launched Daredevil debuted in 2011, it was a bit of a revelation for Marvel. With a creative team of Mark Waid, Paolo Rivera and Marcos Martín, as well as strong editorial guidance from Senior Editor Steve Wacker, it represented a revival of sorts of the publisher's strategy of assigning top flight talent on books with B List characters, allowing the titles to function without being entirely beholden to current Marvel continuity. Daredevil was instantly a critical success, and when Samnee came on to replace Rivera and Martín, the book retained its acclaim. It's won multiple Eisners, and almost certainly influenced the decision to launch Matt Fraction and David Aja's Hawkeye, among other titles.
Sales on the book are still solid, and it remains one the most critically lauded monthly titles on the stands, so it seems unlikely that it will be gone for long. Last week we ran an editorial about the preponderance of #1 issues from Marvel in recent months (and today ran a follow up piece regarding how that strategy affects retailers), and the trend is continuing into the new year with the roll out of the publisher's All New Marvel Now initiative. So it's possible this is nothing more than the first step toward a relaunch with the same creative team, and maybe a new direction. Or perhaps the departure of Samnee and/or Waid is the impetus behind the decision. It could be either of those, or something else entirely. We'll just have to wait and see. ComicsAlliance contacted Marvel, but had yet to hear back as of press time.
Wacker addressed the announcement in the letters column of this month's Daredevil issue: "Javier [Rodriguez] will be back to draw issue #34 in a couple months to give Chris time to focus on our big two-part finale to this era of Daredevil. Sad, I know, but all things must end, right?"
Daredevil #36 arrives in stores in February.