Netflix Daredevil Review Episode Five – World On Fire

Netflix’s newest original series, “Daredevil” debuted April 10, with all 13 episodes of the Marvel Comic adaptation’s first season available on the streaming service. Ed Carroll will review each episode here on Monkeys Fighting Robots without fear and let you know if the latest entry into the Marvel Cinematic Universe meets the lofty standards of its predecessors.

Maybe I’m just quick to complain about things, because Netflix’s Daredevil seems to have a habit of revealing information to us viewers as we need to know it. So far, the delayed gratification is paying off, and while the fifth episode, “World on Fire,” probably wasn’t the best episode of the show so far (that honor goes to episode three, “Rabbit in a Snowstorm”), but nearly everything in this explosively-eventful episode worked to perfection.

A lot seemed to happen in this episode,  starting with the pre-credits scene with Matt Murdock and Claire Temple kissing (and then later on, revisiting Murdock’s previous declaration that he enjoys torturing awful people). This was a little cliche, overall, but we did get a glimpse into how Murdock “sees” the world: as if it’s on fire. The affects were both brief and way-better than the crappy 2003 film’s sonar, and honestly, I’m mostly satisfied now. I’m not against the show giving us that viewpoint again in perhaps a sweet action scene, but I would probably be OK even if they only use it there (or only show Rosario Dawson’s Temple in that viewpoint).

The fallout from Wilson Fisk’s anger continued, as he told the Russians that the man in the black mask (Daredevil, although he hasn’t taken the moniker yet) was the one who killed Vladimir. Honestly, the plan to try to pin his murder on Daredevil seemed silly to me at first, but instead it was more of a stalling tactic to buy Fisk some time to set up a pretty explosive way to take out most of the Russians.

Foggy and Karen got some fun screen time together, and the relative levity of their scenes was a nice contrast to the brutality we were seeing in others. Of course, Daredevil reminds us that in this Hell’s Kitchen, danger is everywhere and unfortunately for Karen, Foggy and Ms. Cardenas (Judith Delgato), as one of the explosions set off by Fisk to eliminate the Russians rocked the elderly woman’s apartment. It was also nice to see Foggy spring into action to try to help (rather than his unexpected first date with Karen being spoiled by an explosion).

landscape_xlargeFisk had a ruined date himself in the last episode, and Vanessa (Ayelet Zurer) did return to give him another chance. I don’t remember Kingpin having such nervous tics in the comics (I could be wrong), but I’m not opposed to Vincent D’Orofrio putting his own spin on the character. It’s a bit odd for the main villain in a series to have a love interest, but give credit to Daredevil for humanizing Fisk, but still showing how brutal he can be if provoked. Vanessa also apparently wasn’t as naive about Fisk as we were lead to believe, because she brought a gun because she knew if nothing else, he was a dangerous man. D’Orofrio and Zurer performed really well in this dinner scene, as opposed to their awkward first date last episode.

Murdock’s own assault on the Russians was thwarted by Fisk’s bombs, but we still got some pretty great action scenes in “World on Fire.” This episode ended on a bit of a cliffhanger, but I feel compelled to point out how silly that cliffhanger actually is. No, Murdock isn’t bulletproof, but there appeared to be four police officers, and we know he’s taken on more armed Russians at a time than four. Maybe Murdock was injured from the explosion, but it didn’t appear like he was, so it just seemed silly for him to be scared of this and give up. I’m going to assume he gets away early in the next episode.

But minor quibbles aside, “World on Fire” was a terrific episode of television. This feels a lot like the Daredevil comics come to life, without being a carbon copy of some of those storylines. Netflix’s Daredevil doesn’t hold out on its viewers for longer than it needs to, and as a result I’m falling in love with this show.

Watching Daredevil on Netflix, too? Leave a comment and let us know what you think and feel free to tweet Ed –@EdTheRevelator
You can find his review of episode one here.
Click here for his review of episode two.
Read his thoughts on the jaw-dropping episode three here.
Ed’s review of the fourth episode is here.


Ed Carroll
Ed Carroll
Ed Carroll is a television and entertainment writer at Monkeys Fighting Robots, and also writes about Major League Baseball and other entertainment things at Ed lives in Cleveland and enjoys watching the Indians and Cavs, in addition to playing video games and binging on television.