When writer Brian Michael Bendis and artist Alex Maleev outed Matt Murdock as Daredevil in the pages of a tabloid newspaper, jaws dropped across the Marvel Universe - and all over the comics industry. Readers were speechless. Nothing would ever be the same, and nothing could possibly be more shocking.
Until the creative team upped the ante again, and the Man Without Fear did the unthinkable. Faced with the growing frustration that his fight with the Kingpin would never end, Daredevil beat him senseless and declared himself the Kingpin. His new ultimatum to the denizens of Hell's Kitchen: Clean up or get out.
Ever the tease, the team of Bendis and Maleev then proceeded to tell stories set a year later. Fans dying to know what happened during Daredevil's reign as the "King of Hell's Kitchen" were treated to only a tantalizing piece of the larger puzzle.
The wait is now over! The details of Daredevil's historic cleanup of Hell's Kitchen will finally be explored in Daredevil #71-#75. Framed around the Ten Commandments, the five-part "Decalogue" story arc is a series of one to two self-contained stories told by people whose lives have been profoundly affected by an encounter with Daredevil himself. Each testimonial will peel back another layer in the Daredevil story. Together, they offer a prismatic look at one of the most complex characters in the Marvel Universe.
The inspiration for this unique story arc came from Bendis's great admiration for the Polish filmmaker Krzysztof Kieslowski, and is an homage to what many consider his seminal work, The Decalogue, a series of 10 one-hour dramas originally made for Polish TV.
"Kieslowski is one of my heroes," said Bendis. "I just love him tremendously, and I'd found a book of scripts for his Decalogue (or Dekalog), which he'd done in Poland about twenty years ago. In the introduction, he discusses quite frankly that he wished a bunch of other writers and artists would do the Ten Commandments as a theme. He said he wasn't the first person to think of this, and hoped that more people would do it."
Kieslowski died in 1996, and Bendis still mourns the loss of one of modern cinema's great storytellers. "I miss him a great deal, and I think it's my way of (A) getting my story across about Hell's Kitchen; and( B) working in religion. But it's also my valentine to him, doing something that he wanted to have done," said Bendis. Readers have been anticipating this story arc for many months. "I've been working on it for a long time; I haven't rushed it. I announced it a while ago, but that was premature. Now the stories are ready to go," Bendis added. Capped with a double-sized 75th issue featuring a gallery of all-star pin-ups, this epic story arc is like nothing you've seen before!
Cover alert: A bold new story demands a bold new cover approach, especially designed by cover and interior artist Alex Maleev. This new look will showcase the monthly Daredevil title for the length of the "Decalogue" story arc.