Greatest Daredevil Stories Ever

Daredevil is a complex character. A superhero that has been around for nearly five decades, he has shown unique staying power despite not being among Marvel Comics’ more popular properties. Obviously, Marvel Comics’ heavyweights are the Avengers and Spider-Man, and Daredevil is usually relegated to the sidelines. But he has been around, which means that he has a loyal core of fans that continue to support him.

Other than the aspect of fan support, Daredevil – as mentioned above – offers complexity. Matt Murdock is a blind attorney by day and super-powered crime fighter by night. He is unique among superheroes because of his handicap – he is blind. And yet, his remaining functions at super human levels. Plus, he has that radar sense that compensates for his sight.

Writers who have handled the character have found themselves producing some of their best and career defining work. Here are some of the best storylines for Daredevil.

Born Again

This story arc is written by Frank Miller and it featured the artwork of David Mazzucchelli. It was later reprinted as a graphic novel combined with some additional stories that tied up the loose ends of the original series. The story is about Daredevils fall into poverty and insanity. It was the Kingpin who was responsible for his fall. It also chronicles how he started to build a life for himself again.

The Elektra Saga

This could be considered to be a spinoff from Daredevil as it focuses more on Elektra. This takes bits and pieces from the original Daredevil tales where Elektra appeared and puts them together into a graphic novel. This should still be an essential reading for all Daredevil fans out there. It recounts the story of one of the most intriguing characters in the Marvel universe.

Out

This story arc tells what happens when one of the greatest fears of masked super heroes happen. His secret identity gets revealed to the world! Matt Murdock’s identity is sold to tabloid reporters. He tries to rebuild his life back but it is not going to be easy.

Guardian Devil

This is a story arc that lasted for eight issues. It was written by Kevin Smith and tells the story of Daredevil caring for an infant who could turn out to be the Antichrist or the Messiah. When the story arc was published as a graphic novel, Ben Affleck came up with an introduction to it. It would be remembered that Affleck was the one who portrayed Daredevil in the rather forgettable film adaptation of the comic book character.

Man Without Fear

This is a retelling of Daredevil’s origin by master storyteller Frank Miller. It tells the tale of how young Matt Murdock was raised by his father who is an over the hill fighter. It tells of how he acquired his powers and how he became Daredevil. This is generally considered to be the best story arc for the hero so far.

These are just some of the top story arcs and graphic novels about Daredevil today.

Money Mayweather and the Greatest Defensive Boxers of All Time

Boxing is also known as the Sweet Science. It might seem a little ironic to many who do not fully understand the sport of boxing. How could any sport that is actually about punching your opponent and trying to knock his senses out be described as sweet? It seems to be the most ironic of descriptions, but one that would be vehemently defended by the foremost proponents of the sport.

So it is already a given that boxing is indeed a brutal sport. Any contact sport could not help but be considered brutal, especially by observers who follow the action and yet abhor some of the gorier results of certain fights. But there is also a very good reason why it is known as the sweet science.

The real goal of the sport is to hit without actually being hit back. That’s one of the true definitions of boxing that might escape many, given the emphasis on all the action that occurs on the boxing ring. However, to evade being hit back by your opponent while being able to land your own shots is the true aim of the sport.

Those who are considered “purists” of boxing love the display of skills and tactics inside the ring over mindless swinging and all guts and heart fighting. And who can blame them, when they love watching a boxer displaying his full arsenal of skills and abilities in order to gain the advantage – and eventually the victory – over his opponent.

To watch a boxer who is gifted with natural abilities as well as superior technical knowhow is truly a sight to behold. Little in the sport of boxing compares to such an experience – except perhaps the greatest brawls that elevate it from all other ordinary blood and guts action.

A boxer who has supreme skills usually displays both offensive and defensive virtuosity. And so we all know that fighters who are able to showcase those superior skills are admired and looked at with awe. But how about those boxers who are more known for their great defense than anything else? The really slick boxers who pride themselves in making their opponents look foolish and inept with their elusiveness and skilful defensive techniques – how do they fare in the public’s opinion?

To boxing purists and those who genuinely love the sport, the defensive geniuses epitomize what boxers should really be. To them those boxers are the epitome of the practitioners of the sweet science – able to hit without being hit back. They are just as exciting to watch, if not even more so, than other types of boxers. At least that’s what people who enjoy the display of skills and techniques like to think.

It would thus be more than a little interesting to look at some of the greatest defensive boxers in history. Those who have been recognized for their greatness in terms of practicing the sweet science and avoid punishment while dishing their own brand of it on their opponents. There have been numerous such boxing champions in history, and that includes the current best fighter on the planet – Floyd Mayweather, Jr.

Floyd Mayweather, Jr.: The Best There Is

Floyed Mayweather, Jr. is the best boxer on the planet right now and that has been true for some time. There is simply no one in the sport who approaches the level of brilliance and smarts that he brings with him each time he steps into the ring. He sits comfortable atop the sport’s pound for pound rankings and he does not have any serious challengers to this title in sight. There is no one among the current crop of boxers that can seriously challenge his pound for pound status, and even those who are near his weight and can conceivably fight him in the ring. From junior welterweight (140 lbs.) to middleweight (160 lbs.), the field is simply too weak.

Mayweather can attribute all the accolades that he is currently getting to his defensive wizardry inside the ring. Money Mayweather is a real defensive genius and his record up to this point in his stellar career says it all. He remains unbeaten after 45 professional fights and he has also managed to knock out 26 of those opponents, even though he is a safety first type of fighter for most of his career. In a professional career that has now spanned over 17 years and which started in 1996, his feat is truly incredible. And on top of that, he has remained at or near the very top of the sport during most of that time.

Mayweather is fresh off his latest victory, a fight in which he schooled and humbled Mexico’s young superstar, Saul “Canelo” Alvarez. The skills and abilities that Mayweather displayed all throughout the 12 round bout with Canelo were just too much for the young superstar to handle. Hi experience was overwhelming for Canelo, but above all that was just the superior ability of Mayweather to actually block and anticipate every shot the younger fighter was going to throw. Canelo just couldn’t find him, and aside from that, Mayweather was able to time him with effective jabs and all kinds of shots that simply frustrated him.

On full display was Mayweather’s otherworldly defense, and of course his shoulder roll was again leading his defensive repertoire. With that latest triumph, Mayweather affirmed his supremacy over the boxing world and he could thank his defense primarily for that. It is probably going to look at how Mayweather would compare against the other defensive geniuses of boxing in the past. It would certainly provide a better perspective on some of the defensive greats who also belong on any list of the greatest pound for pound fighters ever.

Greatest Defensive Fighters Not Named Mayweather

There is no doubt that Mayweather is today’s supreme boxer – with great emphasis on his defensive skills. But how about those who have come before him? Here are a few all time greats when it comes to defense and let’s look at how their careers could be compared to “Money”.

Guglielmo Papaleo

The great Guglielmo Papaleo, more popularly known as Willie Pep, the “Will o’ the Wisp”, is considered by many to be the greatest defensive fighter of all time, greater even than the Pretty Boy himself. In a storied career that spanned a staggering 241 fights, of which only 11 were losses. Pep’s career actually spanned about 26 years, and it is very likely that he was able to last that long because of his defense-first mentality. And Pep was able to display not just great defense through his many fights, but also the unmatched ring generalship that earned him the reputation of being “the greatest featherweight of all time” as well as ranking among the top three or top five of most boxing experts’ lists.

Pernell “Sweet Pea” Whitaker

Pernell “Sweet Pea” Whitaker definitely belongs in any conversation for greatest defensive fighters of any era in boxing. His reflexes and amazing athletic ability allowed him to slip, duck, and also block punches like few other fighters in history have been able to do. Whitaker was able to win world titles in four different weight divisions. He held the WBA, WBC, and IBF Lightweight, IBF Light Welterweight, WBC Welterweight, and WBA Light Middleweight titles. His great defense, combined with his southpaw stance and superior counterpunching ability allowed him to reach the kind of success that he had at the highest level. Sweet Pea had the uncanny ability to evade his opponents’ punches, while maintaining his own steady pressure and attack.

Nicolino Locce

“El Intocable” or “The Untouchable” was truly that, an untouchable boxing specimen showing his remarkable ability atop the boxing ring. In fact, Nicolino Locce, can be said to have more than lived up to that apt moniker. The Argentinean boxing great finished his remarkable career with a total of 136 fights. He won 117 of those bouts, with 4 losses and 14 draws. Locce was only able to record 14 knockouts in his career, which can partly be attributed to his mostly defensive stance. The combination of his naturally great reflexes and unparalleled defensive skills allowed Locce to routinely slip and evade his opponent’s punches, bobbing and weaving even as he remained right in front of them. The only knock on Locce was his lack of power, as he was unable to match his great defense with any comparable offense.

Muhammad Ali

The greatest heavyweight ever’s inclusion in this list might surprise some, but Muhammad Ali possessed sick defensive skills of his own. The fact that it is overlooked by casual fans of boxing is due to his other greater boxing attributes. Those who truly follow the sport however, know that Ali was more than capable of superior defense. A prime Ali had elite reflexes, speed, as well as skills that allowed him to easily move out of harm’s way. He easily slipped, dodged, and moved from the punches that were thrown by his opponents.

All Hail the God of Manga: Osamu Tezuka’s Enduring Legacy

An individual artist who is able to dominate his field is truly exceptional. There have been few artists in history who have been able to achieve that, but then again there haven’t been that many who were qualified or able to do so anyway. Only those who were truly phenomenal creative forces were able to lay claim to such an achievement.

If an artist is able to achieve dominance in several fields throughout his lifetime, however, then that is something else entirely. It would be a feat that can’t just be considered impressive, but something that happens so rarely that it is at first incomprehensible. It approaches genius – which is what many consider Osamu Tezuka to be.

The God of Manga

The God of Manga, the Godfather of Anime, the Walt Disney of Japan – those are just some of the accolades that were heaped upon Osamu Tezuka during his lifetime and beyond. And it is not undeserved hyperbole from his loyal fans and admirers, but rather an apt description of the man who did so much – his legendary creative output alone is enough to earn him his iconic status.

Osamu Tezuka was actually a manga artist and writer, animator, cartoonist, and was even a medical doctor, although he did not actually practice that profession. The incredible body of work that he was able to accomplish during his career that spanned over four decades continues to entertain fans and supporters as well as influence and inspire those who want to follow in Tezuka’s footsteps.

Even if Osamu Tezuka was only able to produce some of the works for which he was best known for – such as Astro Boy and Kimba the White Lion – he is still guaranteed to be looked upon as an iconic figure in his field. But given the fact that he was responsible for producing over 700 manga that’s comprised of about 150,000 pages in total, he was not only a creative force but also a giant when it came to productivity.

It is also of tremendous interest to note that he practically invented the way that Japanese animation or anime is drawn. Of course, he drew inspiration from the early cartoons of Walt Disney as well as the animation that was produced by the Max Fleischer Studios. But he practically invented the look of Japanese animation – especially the signature “big eyes”, which has become one of its most famous characteristics.

For those who are non Japanese, it is probably a little difficult to fully appreciate the magnitude of Osamu Tezuka’s influence. That is, without delving into a little bit of research and background of the man and his incredible body of work. The extent of his influence would surely surprise anyone who was not aware of it before, and would also enable them to finally have the right kind of appreciation for the man who is so revered by artists and creative people the world over.

His Beginnings

Osamu Tezuka (November 3, 1928 – February 9, 1989) was born Shigeru Tezuka in Toyonaka City, Osaka Prefecture. He was the eldest of the three children that were born to the Tezuka family. Ozamu Tezuka grew up in Takarazuka City, in Hyogo prefecture. Even early on, he already displayed a great interest in the arts as well as science. It is notable that he was drawn to both, and even though he would take both paths early on, it is in the arts where he would truly find his calling and ultimately make his mark. It was in drawing where he would first focus his creative energies, and from there he just kept on building his legacy.

When Osamu Tezuka was in his second year of his elementary school, he started drawing comics. About three years later, he found an insect that was known as “Osamushi”. Since the bug’s name sounded just like his real name, he arrived at the decision that he should use Osamushi as his pen name. Osamushi is actually the Japanese name of a genus of beetle or carabus. Tezuka decided that it is through manga that he could help people alter their views and opinions of the world. He started his career in manga after World War II.

Osamu’s Choice: Medicine or Manga?

As mentioned earlier, Osamu Tezuka studied to become a doctor, and he eventually became one. His desire to practice the medical profession started when he was but a child, during the time when he was sick and his arms were swelling. He was eventually cured by a doctor, which inspired him to also become one. Because of his dream to become a doctor, Tezuka attended Osaka University’s medical school. However, it was also while studying to be a doctor when his first work in manga was published.

The first published work by Tezuka was a four page children’s story titled, The Diary of Ma-Chan. He followed that up the very next year with New Treasure Island (Shin Takarajima in Japanese), which was able to sell around 400,000 copies. That figure was an incredibly high number of sales, especially since the manga was meant for kids and the war had just recently ended. It is not a stretch to say that it signaled the start of a golden age for Japanese comics. At the forefront of it all was the young Osamu Tezuka.

In the wake of that initial success, even more followed – titles such as Lost World and Next World. The major turning point in Tezuka’s life came when he was left to decide whether to pursue his career as an artist or as a doctor. He eventually decided to devote his whole life to his art and so even though he was able to complete his medical studies, he never did practice that profession. Or was there ever any need for him to do so, since his success in his chosen field was becoming bigger and better with each passing year. His biggest success was his creation known as Tetsuwan Atomo (or Astro boy in English speaking countries), which literally meant “Iron-armed Atom”.

Tetsuwan Atom aka Astro Boy

Tetsuwan Atom or Astro Boy was Osamu Tezuka’s most famous creation. Originally created in 1951, Astro Boy was actually a minor character in a different story by Tezuka, titled “Captain Atom”. Much positive feedback about the character, however, convinced Tezuka that he should star in his own series, which debuted in 1952 and ran until 1968. After that, there was a newspaper serialization that ran for a couple of years, from 1967 to 1969. A couple of series followed (in 1972-73 and in 1980-81).

In anime, Astro Boy became the very first locally produced animated program in Japan in 1963. It was produced by Osamu Tezuma’s own animation studio, Mushi Productions, which he formed shortly after leaving Toei Animation. It was a huge hit right from the start, and paved the way for the anime craze in Japan. A total of 193 episodes of the 30-minute weekly television program were made. There were also other anime series based on the character produced later, and a CGI-animated feature film was also made in 2009.

Other Notable Works by Tezuka

Tezuka’s entire body of work is massive, as has been described earlier. To give a detailed description of each one would no doubt take a very substantial amount of time. The following lists down some of the more notable of his works from both manga and anime.

Metropolis

Metropolis was created by Tezuka in 1949, which was one of his early efforts, especially in science fiction. The story is about Higeoyaji, a private detective, who is trying to take care of a gender switching robot named Mitchy, after the robot’s creator got killed.

The Jungle Emperor aka Kimba, the White Lion

The Jungle Emperor, or known as Kimba, the White Lion in English speaking countries, ran from 1950 to 1954, and was one of Tezuka’s greatest creations. The Jungle Emperor is the story of Leo the white lion and how he is trying to succeed as the king of the jungle. Leo’s father was killed by a hunter.

Buddha

Buddha ran from 1972 to 1983 and was Tezuka’s attempt to tell or at least recreate in manga the life of Gautama Buddha, the “enlightened one”. It was a critically acclaimed series that was also a very gritty portrayal of the life of the founder of Buddhism. It began in September 1972 and ran until December 1983. It is significant for being one of the last great manga epics that Tezuka ever worked on. In 2011, an anime adaptation was released.

Black Jack

Black Jack (1973-83) was the story of a talented surgeon who does his work illegally. He employs the use of supernatural and different techniques in order to cure rare afflictions and diseases. In 1975, it received the Special Award from the Japan Cartoonists’ Association and in 1977, the Koudansha Manga Award. Several anime series and TV movies have been produced about the series over the years.