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Quote1.png I've been your partner Mr. Murdock, but you haven't been mine! Quote2.png
Black Widow

Appearing in "Fear Is the Key!"

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Synopsis for "Fear Is the Key!"

Falling down to the street below, Daredevil is saved by the Black Widow who overcomes her sudden bout of fear. However, DD gets chewed out by the Widow who is fed up for the lack of thanks she receives for helping him out. The Widow then tails Danny French to a meeting where she believes he is trying to sell off the Project 4 globe and attempts to stop the deal. Realizing she had made a mistake and that the deal had nothing to do with Project 4, she finally agrees to help Danny finish their mission.

After Daredevil takes up a job working for Jason Sloan's law firm, he resumes his patrols as Daredevil, and is confronted by a new Mr. Fear. Battling Fear on the roof of Sloan's law firm it is revealed that this Fear knows Daredevil's secret identity. Unmasked, Fear is revealed to be Matt's college friend (and Sloan employee) Larry Cranston. After knocking out an arriving Sloan, DD demands answers from Cranston. Cranston reveals that he was present when Starr Saxon killed the original Mr. Fear Zoltan Drago. Drago told Cranston where he could find a spare Mr. Fear costume and weapons. Afterwards, Cranston deduced Daredevil's identity by the coincidence that both he and Matt Murdock moved to San Francisco with Natasha Romanoff. He decided to use the Fear costume to get revenge on Murdock whom he always despised.

With his plan for revenge foiled, Cranston jumps off the building plummeting to his doom. Calling home to check on Natasha, Ivan tells Matt that she has left and possibly for good.

Solicit Synopsis

He's back from the dead! Mr. Fear - the only man who knows DD's true identity! So - look out!


  • When Cranston is explaining how he became Mr. Fear, it is noted that Zoltan Drago was killed in Daredevil Vol 1 54, however this was never depicted in said issue. Daredevil Vol 1 54 is the issue when Starr Saxon took over as Mr. Fear. Saxon does not reveal that he killed Drago until Daredevil Vol 1 55. Drago's demise is not depicted until this issue.
  • A slightly different cover was originally drawn for this issue. The only difference being that Mr. Fear was strangling Daredevil with one hand. This original cover was reproduced as bonus material for the Essential Daredevil Volume 4 trade paperback. While no reason was given, it's plausible the reason why the cover was changed was likely to comply with the Comic Book Code Authority, which at that time would have been more strongly enforced.
  • This issue features a letters page, Let's Level With Daredevil. Letters are pubished from Drew Feldmann, Cary Quadrangle (Craig Merrick, John Bassett, Dave Wilson, and Rick Hoffman) and Shirley A. Gorman.
  • As seen on page one, this issue is Story#971-Z.

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