dd s2 annoys me partly bc while matt IS a dick for most of it he is also right in some cases? like the not wanting to kill, wanting to protect people. but then you get frank and elektra and even foggy saying that what he's doing is wrong and stupid. it's especially annoying when the "tougher" grittier, abled charas treat matt kinda like he's a dumb kid
That’s an interesting point about abled characters talking down to Matt about his decisions, I hadn’t considered that! (Although I don’t think it applies to Frank, who doesn’t know that Daredevil’s blind.)
I think one of the central issues of S2 (that it admittedly handles clumsily) is black-and-white morality vs. shades of gray. Everyone has a point, and they’re almost never willing to listen to anyone else’s: Matt’s right that he should use his abilities to help people, but Foggy’s right that he’s breaking the law and letting people down and endangering himself to do it. Foggy’s right that Frank is a mass murderer, but Matt and Karen are right that he deserves a fair trial. Frank’s right that his family deserves justice, but the DA is right that he shouldn’t kill hundreds of people to attain it.
Killing is wrong, of course. But! Was it right for Elektra to kill that Hand soldier to protect herself and Matt? Was it right for Frank to kill those other Hand warriors in the finale to save Matt? Is it right for Matt to assault and torture and permanently disfigure people who’ve done bad things as long as he doesn’t kill them? (We’ll set aside for the moment the fact that if you wrap a chain around someone’s neck and use it to drop them down several flights of metal stairs, they dead.) If Stick is right about needing Matt in “the War,” was he right to send Elektra to recruit him? If he’s right about the destructive capabilities of a Black Sky, was he right to kill the one in S1, and should he have killed Elektra as a child? If a resurrected Elektra murders people in Defenders, is that then on Stick and Matt?
I’m not offering answers to any of these questions, and I don’t necessarily think the show does, either. One of the things I think it does really well is grapple with the morality of vigilantism via a protagonist who doesn’t know the right answer and constantly makes mistakes. (Compare to Arrow, where every awful thing Ollie does is rationalized as the right thing to do because he’s the protagonist.) I think it sometimes undercuts itself by getting a little caught up in the “coolness” of Matt’s/Frank’s/Elektra’s violence, or fucking up its pacing so that complicated moral questions are tossed off without real thought because there’s no time (“Maybe we’ll try it your way, just this once”).
But when Frank or Elektra or Foggy tells Matt he’s wrong, I don’t think the show is trying to say that. (Maybe Foggy, in some cases, but even then Claire is closer to the moral center of the show.) I think it’s laying out a series of arguments for us to navigate, just like Matt has to.