Examining the 10 greatest creative runs with the Man Without Fear
10: Andy Diggle and Roberto De La Torre
"Daredevil" Vol. 3 #501-512 (2009-2012); "Daredevil: Reborn" #1-4 (2011)
Matt Murdock's life had become a living Hell in the previous creators' runs, and Andy Diggle arrived to help the hero deal with the aftermath. Reeling from the loss of his new wife, Milla, after her breakdown, Matt became a relentless crime lord seeking to conquer the underworld so it could not hurt anyone ever again. Possessed by an ancient demon, Matt was in the lowest place possible as he blurred the lines between corruption and morality.
While Daredevil dealt with his own internal struggle, Diggle focused on Matt's allies who drew strength from Daredevil's past inspirational examples. The White Tiger, Black Tarantula, the new Power Man, Iron Fist, Luke Cage and Shang-Chi all fought the possessed Murdock in order to save him from himself. The "Shadowland" crossover dealt with Daredevil as the new Kingpin of New York and the struggle to save a hero's soul. The crossover saw Daredevil as the central figure of a world altering epic, but by this time, fans were growing weary of Murdock being a tortured hero -- they wanted to see him win, and they rejected the Hell's Kitchen-based event.
In retrospect, Diggle's time on the book was a hyper-controlled narrative of redemption, and fans that stuck around got to see their hero return in the criminally underrated "Daredevil: Reborn." The dark beginnings of Diggle's story resulted in readers judging the writer's entire run as a ponderous narrative, but it was just an exercise in dragging Murdock to the depths of morality in order to pick him back up again. When viewed as a whole, Diggle should be remembered as the first writer in a long time who allowed a little light to shine into Daredevil's world.