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DAREDEVIL Episode 7 Recap: Punisher in the Spotlight

Warning: This recap contains spoilers for the Daredevil episode “Semper Fidelis.” Leave the ring and find a fight away from this page if you haven’t seen the episode yet.

Reyes didn’t kid around. She accelerated Frank’s trial, and while Nelson and Murdock should be completely focused on how they’re going to survive the onslaught, only half the lawyer team was invested. The seventh episode of Daredevil’s second season, “Semper Fidelis,” brought Matt’s multi-tasking abilities to a head. Semper fidelis means always faithful or loyal, which is exactly what Matt wasn’t throughout this episode. He tried to balance helping Elektra with preparing for Frank’s trial and failed miserably.

Matt and Elektra went on a couple of forgettable jaunts looking for the next clue to what the Yakuza have been hiding. The second outing was fruitful and gave them useful information and also ended up with them tending to each other’s wounds. Even though it’s been years since they ended their relationship, they were really comfortable about showing their literal scars. It was matter of fact for both of them to stitch cuts closed and to clean up blood. I appreciated how there wasn’t much sexual tension in that scene, only two fighters taking care of business.

I didn’t appreciate how Elektra shoved her nose where it didn’t belong. It was bad enough she spied on Matt and Karen and did nothing but insult Matt’s life–she found his choices exceedingly boring–but she mucked around with their case. Her actions led to their latest path of success with Frank’s trial going completely off course. Elektra was mean and petty, and yet Daredevil still continued to work with her. The trail led them to a building that belonged to Fisk in season one, and they found a very large hole. No, really.

One aspect we didn’t see much of in the first season was the courtroom. It didn’t make sense for Marvel to turn their first superhero series on Netflix into a courtroom drama or procedural, obviously. But, the lawyer aspects have been turned up slightly this season, and they smartly connected them to Frank. Foggy and Karen have had to research, problem-solve, speak legal jargon eloquently, and it’s all worked splendidly. Matt’s had a few chances to act like a lawyer too, and it’s been a welcome turn of events.

Foggy in particular stepped up in “Semper Fidelis.” He had to fill in for Matt when his partner didn’t do what he said he would, and he did so in a way that was perfectly Foggy. He didn’t knock the opening statement of the trial out of the park, but he handled it in an honest way. He’s not a dazzler, but he gets the job done–I respect it.

After Matt hugely fucked up by being late to court, he worked doubly hard for a minute to attempt to make up for it. He and Karen teamed up to look more into getting the medical examiner to admit he altered the autopsy reports for Frank’s family and just when ducks seemed to be a row, they got into an argument about Frank’s methods. Karen didn’t entirely disagree with Punisher’s actions because he got results where the legal system couldn’t. Knowing how Matt reacted to Frank’s reasoning for why he does what he does, he didn’t take Karen’s opinions so well.

And because it wasn’t enough to have one relationship in an awkward state, Foggy and Matt argued too. Matt admitted Elektra was back and was the one who threatened the medical examiner. Matt tried to push the blame around and say her was being coerced, but Foggy, precious Foggy, didn’t tolerate it. He’s one of few people that know about Matt’s secret, and given his knowledge, he was in a unique position to call Matt out. Matt so deserved it. He has severe issues with taking ownership for his actions.

On the whole, “Semper Fidelis,” was on the lackluster side. Elektra’s mission with the Yakuza still feels like a weird tangent (maybe that will change because of the gaping gap in the ground), and she’s too mean to be likable. I can see why Matt is having trouble saying no to her, but I hate it. Still, the Foggy-ness of the episode saved it for me. You rule, Elden Henson. You. Rule.

Random thoughts:

  • Props to Frank for saying using PTSD to defend his actions and try to escape conviction would be an insult to the veterans who are actually dealing with trauma from the battlefield. Other things can of course trigger PTSD, but I get why’d he feel that way.
  • Foggy, you said everything we all wanted to say. Never stop being you.
  • Pro tip: Never go out and vigilante (yes, I’m using it as a verb) when you’re angry.

Favorite quotes:

  • “If anyone can kill anyone in this town, where does the sanity end?” – Potential juror
  • “I’m no doctor, but I’d say he’s at least driven past crazy town.” – Foggy
  • “Stop acting like these things just happen to you.” – Foggy

What are your thoughts about Frank’s trial so far? Any theories about the giant hole in the ground? Sound off in the comments or come tell me about your bingeing on Twitter.

IMAGES: Netflix, Malisse Icons

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