Now, it's been a few weeks since Daredevil premiered on Netflix, so odds are you've seen it at least once by now. More than 10% of all Netflix subscribers watched it in its first week! So we feel safe in posting these slightly spoilery Easter eggs. We'll break it down by episode, so you know where to look for the goods.
- Into the Ring
- The truck carrying the chemicals that blind Matt is owned by the Rand Corporation - the company eventually owned by DD's fellow Netflix star-to-be, Iron Fist.
- The serial number on the drum of chemicals is 0464XXXX - a nod to Daredevil's first appearance in April, 1964.
- The only American guy at the initial dock fight is Turk Barrett, a recurring character from the comics. He's a small-time crook and one of DD's most reliable sources of underworld information.
- Matt works out at Fogwell's Gym, which has been around since the first issue of the comic.
- Wesley refers to "Mr. Rigoletto" - in the comics, he was Kingpin's predecessor as the crime lord of New York.
- Most of the criminal bosses at the meeting are from the comics: Leland Owlsley is known as The Owl, and was an embezzling stockbroker who turned to crime; also at the meeting is Nobu, seemingly named for Kagenobu Yoshioka, founder of the Hand ninja clan; and Madame Gao is reminiscent of Crane Mother, a character from the recent Iron Fist comics.
- Claire Temple in the comics was Dr. Claire Temple, but here she's just a nurse. In fact, she's Night Nurse, a recurring character from the comics who patches up injured superheroes. She'd be a really good "Phil Coulson" for the Netflix shows.
- Claire calls Matt "Mike." At one point when Matt's secret identity was outed (it happens a lot), he created the fake identity of "Mike Murdock," his own twin brother.
- Josie's Bar is the watering hole of choice for criminals and scumbags. It first appeared in issue #160.
- Roscoe Sweeney, the gangster threatening Jack Murdock, is better known as "The Fixer." His friend is called Silke, possibly a reference to Sammy Silk Jr, a character who appeared in one of Bendis' stories.
- Jack's opponent in his match is Carl "Crusher" Creel, better known as the Absorbing Man. Yes, the same Absorbing Man who appeared on Agents of SHIELD.
- The priest seems to want to talk to Matt about something - probably the whereabouts of his mother (who, in the comics, experienced such terrible postpartum depression that she was afraid she would hurt Matt, so instead left her family and became a nun.
- You can tell this show was made before Marvel and Sony worked out their Spider-Man deal: if it had been after, Ben Urich would probably have been working for The Daily Bugle, not The New York Bulletin.
- The bowling ball killer is John Healy. While that name doesn't come straight from the comics, it's got a surprising similarity to Elton Healey, better known as Oddball. Coincidence? Or homage? You decide!
- Karen Page's "past activities" have gotten pretty wild in the comics. We won't say anything more, because it looks like that's where they're going for the future.
- Vanessa first appeared in The Amazing Spider-Man #70, but was a much less nuanced and interesting character than we see here.
- "You don't have to reveal your identity to stop violent crime" reads the poster at the police station.
- Vanessa mentions once dating a man who wore a white suit an an ascot - in other words, Kingpin's usual comicbook appearance.
- News channel WHIH has appeared in Iron Man 2, Incredible Hulk, and Agents of SHIELD.
- The police sniper (or at least, the sniper in a police uniform) has a playing card in his bag. Could this be our first look at Kingpin's favorite assassin, Bullseye?
- Stick was Matt's trainer in the comics, and is dedicated to stopping The Hand. He has an entire group called "The Chaste," which is probably who he was talking to at the end.
- The shipping container that Stick and Matt investigate is marked as belonging to Asano Robotics. Yoshida Asano, aka Samurai Steel, is an Iron Man foe from the comics.
- What is Black Sky? No idea. But it will probably have something to do with Iron Fist.
- Remember the mention of Rigoletto earlier in the series? Here he is again! Not seen, but definitely a presence.
- Melvin Potter is the supervillain known as the Gladiator. Why is he a tailor here? Because that's what he was in the comics: he had mental issues, and was easily manipulated by others.
- Nobu's red outfit pretty much screams "I'm part of The Hand."
- The Hand seem dead-set on owning one particular building, don't they? Its location must be important for some mystical reason. Maybe they want to build Shadowland?
- The packet of drugs has a snake symbol printed on it, based on the chest tattoo of Iron Fist's enemy Steel Serpent.
- "That Greek girl" Matt used to date is, of course, Elektra Natchios. And thus, with that one line, you could hear legions of Daredevil fans cheering her inevitable introduction.
- Ben Urich has two framed front pages in his office: one about the Battle of New York (aka "The Incident" aka Loki's attack in Avengers) and "Harlem Terror," about the time Hulk fought the Abomination. Yes, Incredible Hulk took place in Harlem.
- Landman & Zakk are representing Roxxon, who have been briefly seen or mentioned many times in the MCU.
- The corrupt politician, Senator Randolph Cherryh, was created by Frank Miller during his run on the comic.
- At the fundraiser, Owlsley mentions "Van Lunt." Nelson and Murdock's office space used to belong to "Van Lunt Real Estate Co." (as seen by the peeling paint on the window). In the comics, Cornelius Van Lunt was a real estate developer who because the supervillain Taurus, part of the Zodiac group.
- Owlsley also says, "Make sure Richmond's on the guest list. He won't come, but he'll get pissy if he isn't invited." A lot of fans are taking this as a reference to Kyle Richmond, a billionaire playboy who dresses in a costume to fight crime. Yes, he's an ersatz Batman, created for the Squadron Supreme; he goes by the name Nighthawk.
- When Matt goes to see Melvin Potter again, we see designs for the Gladiator costume.
- Plus, he throws a saw blade. Gladiator used saw blades mounted on his wrists as his major weapons.
- The "Betsy" Melvin mentions is Betsy Beatty, his social worker. He has a crush on her.
- We see the logo on the door across the hall from Nelson & Murdock. Atlas Investments shares its logo with "Atlas Comics," one of the name Marvel used before they were Marvel.
- Madame Gao says she comes from "significantly farther away" than China. Oh yeah, she's definitely going to be part of Iron Fist.
- This episode finally has our Stan Lee cameo: his picture is hanging on the wall at the police station.
- Leland Owlsley had a son named Lee - as in "Leland Junior," maybe?
- In Melvin's workshop, we see a pair of metal legs like the ones Stilt-Man uses.
- The music that plays while everyone gets arrested is an aria from Puccini's Turandot called "Nessun Dorma." Its lyrics translate as:
But my secret is hidden within me; none will know my name! No, no! On your mouth I will say it when the light shines!
Vanish, o night!
Fade, you stars!
Fade, you stars!
At dawn, I will win!
I will win! I will win!
Sounds familiar, eh! Very thematically appropriate.
Daredevil's already been renewed for a second season, so make sure you've got all the small nods and Easter eggs before that happens.