By Jon Durmin
Salutations Body Politic, and a delightful Daredevil week to one and all! As we honor the release of the second season of the Netflix-Marvel Cinematic Universe original series ‘Daredevil’ I don’t mind telling you there was one character who stood out to me as the real star of season one. It wasn’t Matt, nor Ben Urich, nor Karen Page, nor even Wilson Fisk. Marvel, Netflix, and Elden Henson have awakened a bona-fide Foggy Nelson fandom in one Jon Durmin.
This being so, when esteemed editor Jarid proposed a Rogues Roulette for a Daredevil character I thought, why not Foggy? Rogues Roulette is all about building a stronger rogues’ gallery for a character who doesn’t have one. With the likes of Bullseye, Gladiator, Kingpin, the Owl, Typhoid Mary, Stilt Man, and more in his stable of foes, the diabolically costumed-half of Nelson and Murdock hardly needs a makeover. We could have done a loose tie-in with an Elektra or a Punisher RR since both appear in season 2 of the Netflix show, but foes of that pair rarely survive to fight another day; makes it a bit tough to put together a rogues’ gallery.
Foggy, however, is a crime fighter and hero all in his own way. He can fight a kind of crime that few heroes in any comic book universe are equipped to defeat – a type of crime that can’t be punched into submission. Foggy Nelson may be the greatest potential champion against so-called “White Collar” crime in the Marvel Universe. She-Hulk and Nelson’s law partner Matt Murdock are also attorneys, but with their moonlighting activities they’re hardly equipped to make a full-time job of challenging crooked investment bankers, Ponzi scheme architects, polluting industrialists, money-launderers, dishonest politicians, terrorist financiers, and many more who quietly prey on society. These issues are not small potatoes stuff; we’re talking about the type of people who are the real-life villains responsible for such life-destroying attacks on private citizens, civil society, and global stability as the sub-prime mortgage crisis of 2008 and the financing of the Daesh.
Our first deadly foe for Foggy Nelson is Sebastian Shaw. Frequent head of the Hellfire Club as their Black King, Shaw has been an exploitative industrialist and war profiteer, and has been involved with organized crime, terrorism, bribery, blackmail, and more throughout his career. With the power to turn any blow struck against him in combat into increased strength and durability he’s a fearsome opponent. For much of his villainy, Shaw relies more on his abilities as a deal-broker and his reputation than he does on combat. Establishing a case that would put Shaw in prison for his many civil misdeeds or seek financial redress for his victims could do well more to repair the damage Shaw has caused than any brawl with Colossus or Magneto. With a lawyer as adept as Foggy prosecuting Shaw, the Black King’s reputation might be destroyed and his assets frozen. The harm he could do to the public would be severely limited and he might even be taken off the table for good!
Shaw’s not the only example of this type of villain in the Marvel Universe. It seems like no matter how many times Spider-Man or the Avengers find themselves up against NormanOsborn, he always lands on his feet. Not even death has managed to keep this Goblin down. However, Norman’s villainy is, like Shaw’s, largely dependent on his ability to utilize his wealth, connections and technology. If successfully prosecuting Osborn for his shady business practices can take that out of his hands Spider-Man’s job just got a whole lot easier!
This list really only scratches the surface. There’s little limit to the range of white collar baddies that Foggy could do more to challenge than other good guys in the Marvel Universe. Mr. Nelson’s good works will inevitably paint a target on him, but there are solutions to that problem. Marvel’s got plenty of heroes for hire and I’d like to propose that to the Nelson and Murdock team could be added upright bodyguards like Luke Cage, Misty Knight, Colleen Wing, Paladin, and even Deadpool! With that kind of protection, and at odds with this type of foe, Foggy has the potential to be the type of hero that the world needs most right now!