While I want to hate the "reboot" trend, I can't. I write too many of those "If they had just done it right!" rants. For a studio to offer the chance to see a movie done right is just too tempting – and it's not as though it obliterates the original attempt, the fans of that film can still go geek out over it and pretend the rest of us are collectively insane. It's not a trend that I would want to see expand beyond comic book films, though – unless there's some classic novel that's been totally bastardized onscreen or something. It really only works if there's source material to go back to, and treat right. And given that comic books are an industry that is built on revision, retro-con, rewriters, and alternate universes, I can't really complain when movie studios try to do the same thing.
I've been in favor of a Daredevil reboot even before it became officially tossed around. Now, I must be honest here and admit I've largely encountered Matt Murdock when he pops up in supporting roles. I think the last time I may have seen him was Mark Millar's Enemy of the State, where Wolverine wondered aloud how Murdock got lucky with the ladies in a thought bubble I have since tried to eradicate from my brain. But I know that when he's done right, he's the perfect mix of heroic and tormented, a character who lives in a gritty, real world that everyone is loving thanks to Christopher Nolan. Yet there's enough of a dose of the supernatural that allows a Daredevil movie to have a little more fun, at least in the villain department, than Nolan's Batman can. Wouldn't it be cool to have a superhero franchise that could introduce the fantastic elements, like The Hand, while still retaining a veneer of reality? And what about the possibilities of cross-over? You'll never see the X-Men or Wolverine pop up in the Marvel Studios universe – but there's no reason they couldn't visit Hell's Kitchen. (Unfortunately, the wrong studios own the rights to Luke Cage and Iron Fist – do you think Sony would sell off Cage?)
Daredevil also has a vital element that Nolan's Batman lacks – women. Saying Murdock has a history of bad relationships is an understatement, but it's ample fodder for film, and could offer the emotional complexity Pepper Potts and Rachel Dawes lacked. Even better, four of his flames have superpowers or talents, which could lead to those much desired spin-off movies. (A Black Widow film? Heck yeah! Wait, who owns her?)
But the best plotline, good for at least two films, would be his thorny and violent affair with Elektra Natchios. I won't lie, it's this aspect of Daredevil that I most want to see redone, erasing all memories of a martial arts battle on a kid's playground. The only Daredevil/Elektra story I own is Frank Miller's Elektra Lives Again – and if there's one reason alone to bring these two back onscreen, it's this book. It's oppressive with Catholic guilt and late winter snows, horrifically violent, and beautifully drawn. (The panels of stained glass would work like a sugar high on a good director.) It's an icy, haunting and nightmarish love story – the sort of thing that could redefine the comic movie genre. Why, I might even give up all possibilities of a third Batman to hear "But she's cold. She's someplace cold." before the screen fades to black.
Of course, one has to remember that while "dark," "gritty" and "complex" are the new superhero keywords, and that we're likely to get another Daredevil that's flashy and devoid of substance, it's worth throwing out there, though, just in case Fox is browsing the Internet for ideas. But since I know I'll be disappointed in my dreams of Elektra Lives Again, can it all lead to a future film where I see her fight zombie ninjas with Wolverine? Because if there's a second reason to reboot Daredevil, it's to bring on the mystical ninjas.