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Do you like checkers? I think there is a point in everyone’s life (usually when we’re young) that checkers is an awesome game. One of the earliest board games played internationally, you may call it draughts, but everyone has a basic idea of how the pieces move, what the theory of the game is and how to win. It’s a simple but challenging game, probably taught by a family member or a friend, maybe even by a super-cool math teacher on a rainy day. Young and old can play the same game and get the same enjoyment out of being kinged or hopping over a bunch of your opponent’s pieces. Some might even call checkers the ‘gateway drug’ to chess, as it takes that board and provides a challenging new game to play in checkers’ place.
The thing about checkers, though, is that eventually you’re going to want to play something else. Playing a lot of games of checkers, day in and day out, can get boring. The game can seem childish and simple after awhile, and if you asked a room full of fourth graders if they’d rather play checkers or Halo? Not that checkers isn’t fun now and again, but nowadays, we the playing public wouldn’t settle for the same simple game over and over.
With Shadowland, Andy Diggle has finally tipped over the board and scattered the checkers all over the floor (maybe kicking a couple under the couch). Sure, he played checkers with us and started out with similar gambits that were noticed before, but now with the end of a major story arc and Marvel’s ‘street crew’ settled in a new direction, I can say with some satisfaction that this is a new, refreshing direction for the character of Matt Murdock and his continuing troubles and heroism. So what game are we playing now? Can it be Battleship? Read on and find out.
(WARNING: Yep, spoilers ahead for Shadowland #5 and Daredevil #512. I don’t think it’s too much of a spoiler to say that the good guys win in this one, but watch how they do it. Diggle crafted a fantastic ending, so please grab a copy and read along!)