This is potentially controversial, and may require a more detailed write up at some point, but pound for pound, I’d argue Daredevil has the most consistently excellent modern solo series of any Marvel hero. When you think about the greats that have blessed Matt Murdock with all time great, era defining runs (Miller, Nocenti, Bendis, Waid) it’s downright startling.
As Daredevil’s Netflix series renewed interest, finally giving us the savior of Hell’s Kitchen we’ve been waiting for, you can read up on the essential Daredevil comics from his origin to present day.
I’d also recommend our Punisher and Elektra reading orders for those seeking even more comics!
Without further ado: the Daredevil reading order.
I) Daredevil’s Origins
You’ll undoubtedly note that my early Daredevil Origins section is fairly sparse. Nothing against the hornhead’s 60’s origins, but I’m not going to lie: most readers will want to get the origins and jump ahead to the Frank Miller era that defines the character we see today.
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The first issue of Daredevil impressively tackles all of the familiar Daredevil origin beats we know and love. It’s impressive just how much of Matt Murdock’s beginnings are captured in that one issue, as well as the number of Daredevil foes we quickly see introduced in those first 11 issues (The Owl! Purple Man! Stilt Man!!!).
Daredevil, Vol. 1 (Marvel Masterworks)
Daredevil #1 – #11
Daredevil: Battlin’ Jack Murdock
#1 – #4
It’s worth noting that the four issue Battlin’ Jack Murdock miniseries was published in 2007. Nonetheless, it’s all flashback, and works best as some surprisingly touching fill-in detail surrounding Daredevil’s origins.
II) Daredevil: The Frank Miller Era
Frank Miller’s run on Daredevil lasted for less than fifty issues (plus two trades), and yet it it introduced virtually everything we know about the character today. The importance of his dad, the way his powers work, his involvement with characters like Stick, Elektra, the Kingpin, Bullseye, and the Hand. It’s all here. (Side note: This is also where Frank got a lot of his ideas for his iconic run on Batman.)
Daredevil by Frank Miller & Klaus Janson Omnibus
Daredevil #158 – #191
Daredevil: Love and War (Marvel Graphic Novel)
Original Graphic Novel
Daredevil #226 – #233
Daredevil: The Man Without Fear
#1 – #5 (1993)
II Redux) Ann Nocenti and Joe Kelly Take Daredevil From the Late 80’s Through the 1990’s
Daredevil Epic Collection: A Touch of Typhoid
Collects: Daredevil #253 to #270
Covers a good chunk of Ann Nocenti’s run on Daredevil, introducing Daredevil villain Typhoid Mary.
Daredevil: The Fall of the Kingpin
Collects: Daredevil #297 to #300
The follow-up to Daredevil: Born Again.
Daredevil Epic Collection: Fall From Grace
Collects: Daredevil #319 to #322
I’m not a Fall From Grace fan, but it does come up as one of the more well known Daredevil and Elektra storylines of the mid-90’s.
Daredevil Epic Collection: Widow’s Kiss
Collects: Daredevil #365 to #380, Daredevil/Deadpool Annual ’97
Joe Kelly is most well known for his 1997 kickoff to Deadpool (DD and Deadpool even crossed over for an annual issue!), but many people forget he was also writing one of the last Daredevil runs before the series rebooted with Marvel Knights.
III) Daredevil in the 2000’s: Kevin Smith and Marvel Knights
This, more than Punisher, was what launched Marvel Knights. It was mature and really explored Matt’s faith and expanding off that by delving into why he is so drawn to what’s dark and mysterious in the world.
Bringing Smith on was really controversial at the time as he was known as a comic fan, not so much a writer. But he surprised a lot of people with this run and there are still parts of it that are surprisingly good. Unfortunately, there are also some Kevin Smith tropes in here that don’t age quite so gracefully. Like his terrible handling of Karen Page and his obsession with Bullseye.
Daredevil #1 – #8
#1 – #5
Punisher Vol 1: Welcome Back Frank
Collects: Punisher #1 to #12
This is not the first time Punisher and Daredevil have crossed paths, but for my money, it is the definitive event. The first time on paper we see the lengths to which they’ll go… and just how much Frank respects Matt.This brief encounter sets up at least three future arcs — entire storylines — for Daredevil comics and should be considered essential reading.
#1 – #15
Daredevil Vol. 2: Parts of a Hole
Daredevil #9 – #15
IV) Daredevil: The Bendis & Maleev Era
If you’re going to read only one run on Daredevil, this might be the best place to start. Because this is not a Daredevil book… this is a Matt Murdock book, and it is incredible. Bendis absolutely turns Murdock’s life upside-down and keeps him off-balance the entire arc. For a decade of real time. (It’s amazing Marvel let him do it in the first place.) The end result is that the whole run both builds on continuity without requiring it for reading. Instead, you just build a life with this character while his falls apart.
Daredevil by Brian Michael Bendis & Alex Maleev Ultimate Collection – Book 1
Daredevil #16-19 & #26-40
Elektra By Greg Rucka Ultimate Collection
Elektra #1 – #22
Technically, Elektra shows up in Daredevil’s solo series prior to the completion of issue #40 (the completion of Bendis and Maleev’s book 1). If you really want, you could start reading Elektra around Daredevil #30. Personally, I’d just fill in the solo Elektra if you’re so inclined.
#1 – #6
Daredevil by Brian Michael Bendis & Alex Maleev Ultimate Collection – Book 2
Daredevil #41 – #50 & #56 – #60
Daredevil / Echo: Vision Quest
Written by the Walking Dead’s Robert Kirkman!
#1 – #5
Just to put this in perspective, the series was written during the Elektra solo movie years. I know, I tried to forget as well, but our past is always with us.
#1 – #5
#1 – #6
Daredevil by Brian Michael Bendis & Alex Maleev Ultimate Collection – Book 3
Daredevil #66-81, What If Karen Page Had Lived? #1 (Oct 2004 – Jan 2006)
Daredevil vs. Punisher: Means & Ends
#1 – #6
#1 – #5
V) Daredevil: The Brubaker & Lark Era
Ed Brubaker does his best picking up the pieces of what Bendis had left for him. Brubaker does an admirable job adding black humor to the book and giving Daredevil allies at a time he feels his most alone.
Daredevil By Ed Brubaker & Michael Lark Ultimate Collection – Book 1
Daredevil #82 – #93 (through Jan 2007)
I’d note that Civil War takes place during this Brubaker and Lark run. Helps explain the dueling Daredevils.
Daredevil by Ed Brubaker & Michael Lark Ultimate Collection – Book 2
Daredevil #94 – #105 (through Feb 2008)
Daredevil by Ed Brubaker & Michael Lark Ultimate Collection Book 3
Daredevil #106 – #119 & #500 (through Aug 2009)
Daredevil & Captain America: Dead on Arrival
#1 – #4
If we’re being generous, Shadowland was meant to elevate Marvel’s “street level” heroes. It’s the story of what would happen if Matt Murdock took control of the hand, and how it would impact the community. But really, if we’re being honest, Shadowland exists to “fix” what Bendis did with the character so that Netflix could have TV shows about these heroes. Naturally, that “fix” wasn’t taken well by fans, and so we don’t talk much about “SECRET WAR: NETWORK BOARDROOM MEETING.”
Daredevil: Dark Days & Daredevil #501-507
For the full event issue by issue guide, see the Shadowland reading order (July 2010 – Dec 2010)
As far as I can tell, this issue is out of continuity. Potentially fun read, though.
#1 – #4
VII) Daredevil: The Mark Waid & Marvel NOW! Era
Captain America inspires, Spider-Man hopes, Deadpool memes, Daredevil suffers. Suffering has been the emotional core of the Daredevil book ever since Frank Miller rescued him from the ash heap. His catholic guilt tormented him. His body betrayed him. His loved ones were hurt because of him. His whole life was a disaster, at all times. That is until Mark Waid got a hold of him.
Waid took a lot out of those early, pre-Miller books and built a Matt Murdock who could struggle with him demons… and win. Best of all, this is a decision within the comic. Murdock makes the choice to see the light. But is it an act? Is it just him running away from his problems?
Daredevil by Mark Waid, Vol. 1
Daredevil #1-10, 10.1; Amazing Spider -Man 677 (July 2011 – March 2012)
Daredevil by Mark Waid Volume 2
Daredevil #11 – #21, Avenging Spider-Man #6, Punisher #10 (Omega Effect Tie-Ins)
Daredevil by Mark Waid Volume 3
Daredevil #22 – #36
#1 – #8
Daredevil Volume 1: Devil at Bay
Daredevil #1 – #5, 1.5, .1
Daredevil Volume 2: West-Case Scenerio
Daredevil #6 to #10
Superior Iron Man Volume 1: Infamous
Superior Iron Man #1 – #5
Not a typo. Some of Daredevil’s most recent exploits -and Axis tie ins – occur within Superior Iron Man.
Daredevil Vol. 3: The Daredevil You Know
Daredevil Vol. 4: The Autobiography of Matt Murdock
Daredevil #11 to #18
Thus concludes the epic Mark Waid era on Daredevil!
VIII) All-New All-Different Daredevil by Charles Soule
Daredevil: Back in Black Vol. 1: Chinatown
Daredevil: Back in Black Vol. 2: Supersonic
Daredevil/Punisher: Seventh Circle
Included as Daredevil/Punisher: Seventh Circle Infinite Comic on Marvel Unlimited.
Daredevil: Back in Black Vol. 3: Dark Art
Daredevil: Back in Black Vol. 4: Identity
Takes you through Daredevil #1 to #20.
Collects: Civil War Ii: Kingpin #1-4, Amazing Spider-Man (1963) #51
Collects: Kingpin #1-5:
This is a story told from Wilson Fisk’s point of view. (Not to be confused with the Frank Miller run of the same name. )
Bullseye: The Colombian Connection
Collects: Bullseye #1-5:
Another story told from the villain’s POV.
Daredevil – Back in Black, Vol. 5: Supreme
Collects: Daredevil #21-28:
Daredevil – Back in Black, Vol. 6: Mayor Fisk
Collects: Daredevil 595-600
Marvel returned to classic numbering with these issues. Don’t worry, it DOES take place immediately after issues #21-25
Collects: Typhoid Fever: Spider-Man 1, Typhoid Fever: Daredevil 1, Typhoid Fever: X-Men 1
While Daredevil is busy taking down Mayor Fisk, who’s guarding Hell’s Kitchen? Typhoid Mary takes her shot at claiming the Burrough… and comes up against some surprising resistance.
Daredevil – Back in Black, Vol. 7: Mayor Murdock
Collects: Daredevil 601-605
Hunt for Wolverine: Weapon Lost
Collects: Collects Hunt For Wolverine (2018) #1 And Hunt For Wolverine: Weapon Lost (2018) #1-4.
Soule writes this story of Daredevil and Misty Knight searching for Wolverine.It contains information crucial to Daredevil’s main story at this point.
Daredevil Back in Black, Vol. 8: Death of Daredevil
Collects: Daredevil 606-611
IV) Fresh Start Daredevil Comics
Marvel Knights 20th Anniversary
Cates, Rosenberg, and a bunch of other great names get the band back together.
Man Without Fear: The Death of Daredevil – By Jed McKay
Collects: Man Without Fear 1-5
With Daredevil presumed dead, the heroes of Hell’s Kitchen mourn their fallen friend. And come to fear someone new…
Collects: Full event!
Matt Murdock becomes The God Without Fear in this spectacular epic tale.
Daredevil by Chip Zdarsky Vol. 1: To Know Fear
Collects: Daredevil 1-5
Daredevil by Chip Zdarsky Vol. 2
Collects: Daredevil 6-10
Daredevil by Chip Zdarsky Vol. 3: Through Hell
Collects: Daredevil #11 to #15
Daredevil by Chip Zdarsky Vol. 4: End of Hell
Collects: Daredevil #16 to #20
X) Team-Ups & Guest Spots
The below team-ups span various eras of Daredevil’s history, and don’t have to follow the preceding section of comics!
Greatest Spider-Man and Daredevil Team-Ups
Collects: Collects The Amazing Spider-Man #’S 16, 396, Daredevil #270, Marvel Team-Up #’S 56, 73, The Spectacular Spider-Man #’S 26, 27, 28, 219.
Spider-man and Daredevil have been fast friends since the 60s, giving writers some fantastic banter to work with while their artists draw high-flying adventure.
Daredevil and the Punisher: Child’s Play | Jan 1988 | Miller
Written and illustrated by Frank Miller
Daredevil/Black Widow: Abattoir | July 1993 | Starlin, Chiodo
A fun detective story where Natasha and Matt try to find out who’s killing SHIELD’s telepaths
Collects: Venom On Trial #1-3
Daredevil defending Venom. Larrry Hama at his most Hama. So much 90s.
Daredevil/Bullseye: The Target
Daredevil and Spider-Man are forced to protect the King Pin.
Marvel Knights Daredevil: Unusual Suspects
Collects: Daredevil: Ninja 1-3; Daredevil/Spider-Man 1-4; Daredevil (1998) 20-25, 51-55; Spider-Man/Daredevil 1
Bendis, Jenkins, Gale & Mack telling some great tales… some of which involve Stilt-man
Defenders Vol. 1: Diamonds Are Forever
Collects: Defenders 1-5
Jessica Jones, Daredevil, Luke Cage, and Iron Fist come together to bust some heads.
Defenders Vol. 2: Kingpins of New York
Collects: Defenders 6-11
The King Pin is gone… but Deadpool is here?
steven kelly says
Hi elektra : running with the devil seems to be missing from this list
Great website, and thanks! There is a discrepancy in the Typhoid Fever description on this page and also on Amazon. The book listed as Typhoid Fever: Daredevil should instead read Typhoid Fever: Iron Fist.
Collects: Typhoid Fever: Spider-Man, Typhoid Fever: X-Men, Typhoid Fever: Iron Fist
Have you been able to find #297 on Marvel Unlimited? I’d like to read the fall of kingpin but I’m not having any luck finding it. Thanks!
Is there a reading order for Running With The Devil?
Hey man, you are doing great work here but i’m really sorry to tell you that the link of the Shadowland reading order is broken. Keep in your work.
Is there a reason that this reading order only list the first 3 volumes of Mark Waid’s series and leaves out 4-7?
The three Mark Waid volumes listed for the 2011 series are the oversized hardcover versions (which contain approximately 10+ comics in each), not the softcover versions (which contain about 6 in each).
Nice reading order as always. Any particular reason for not including Ann Nocenti’s run though?
Hey Dave, love the website, just one thought: you may need a caveat describing just how very very terrible Shadowland is and how it’s the worst Daredevil story ever written and how it’s not really in character and ends on a huge copout and how no one should read it, just a thought! Anyway love the website!
Love your site and your reading orders. You’ve definitely been my spirit guide in my journey through Marvel.
Just a heads up. At the end of “Daredevil in the 2000’s” you have the last book listed as “Daredevil Vol. 3: Wake Up” when it is actually “Daredevil Vol. 2: Parts of a Hole”. Thanks for putting up with my OCD.
Bruce Williams says
Thanks for having me; finally joined your site. Appreciate your reading orders soooooo much, as have over 35 years of Marvels to catch on. Have beenreading major events, crossovers. Have read Daredevil from Vol. 3 to present. Now to step back further on Hornhead, where do recommend I begin again: Shadowland? Some Miller? His move to Japan? Jumping around to catch up is a little rough, but the stories are soooo good (like novels) that I get into them even with some hints of what’s going on/going to happen. Such good writers today (mostly)! And by jumping in blocks I don’t o.d. on one character. Just finished the Ultimatum saga/block (thanks for your order-list there!). Likely a bunch of Iron Man next. Next big target is House of M, but not quite ready yet (did the Disassembleds (your orders) to prepare). Between Marvel Unlimited and local libraries, with your guidance, I’ll catch up eventually! The journey that started with “The Wedding of Reed and Sue” in ’65 goes on… Excelsior!
It’s a great journey, I can definitely approve of the jumping around approach sometimes.
I’d say that Shadowland is pretty tied to the comics before, so if you haven’t read your Bendis and Brubaker, I’d read those first.
Otherwise, Frank Miller’s DD is pretty much the gold standard. While some is much better than others, I highly recommend his first run on the series and then Born Again.
Enjoy the comics!
I see on MU they have “Daredevil: End of Days” but it’s not listed on here. Is that just a miniseries outside of the DD canon (like DD noir)?
It’s the “last” Daredevil story, in the vein of “Whatever happened to the Man of Tomorrow?” So more of a what if than in continuity, tying up the Bendis/Brubaker era of DD.
So if I just watched the Daredevil netflix series and am interested in getting into the comics (as first time ever marvel comic reader) do you suggest me reading this full list? Because I saw some of your other posts regarding daredevil having shorter lists but I’m not sure if that was just you choosing your favorites sort of. And would marvel unlimited be the best way to read all of these? I think your post said they would be on there..?
MU is a great way to get at these comics. These selections will be on there.
You could start at the top here and enjoy, but if you really just want to see if DD comics are for you, Id start with the Frank Miller section. The Netflix show most closely resembles these stories.