Ben Affleck Daredevil Return In Doctor Strange In The Multiverse Of Madness – Rumor
We love a good rumor at Comic Years. With Spider-Man: No Way Home the biggest COVID era box office event the smart money is on seeing what former franchise folks can be mined for, well, whatever this new ouroboros of nostalgia is. If you’re annoyed, blame comic books, whose genius writers created the idea of a multiverse so they could write story after story of horrible things happened to their characters and ending tragically, only to call it “imaginary.” Yet, rather than forget missteps, perhaps the choice is to embrace them. Hence, we have a new rumor that suggests Marvel Studios wants Ben Affleck to return as Daredevil (or Matt Murdock) in Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness.
As Comic Years’ Senior Apologist, even I find the circa 2003 Daredevil movie a tough film to enjoy. They went for it though. The attempt these filmakers made deserves our respect. And this film is also the reason why we can boast never having a bad Kingpin in live action or animation. Whatever problems you think this movie has, the late Michael Clarke Duncan as Wilson Fisk should not be one of them. So, as it’s possible that Doctor Strange will be zipping and zapping throughout the multiverse, it makes sense to capitalize on the chance to call back to these earlier iterations of films. Also, it opens the door to seeing other formerly Fox movie characters like the X-Men.
So, on one hand it makes sense to ask Ben Affleck to return as Daredevil in Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness because it shows Marvel embracing all of its past. But, there are reasons why the actor might not.
Why the Ben Affleck Daredevil Should Return
Image via 20th Century Studios
All people ever seem to remember about 2003’s Daredevil is the playground fight. (It’s no Catwoman basketball, but it’s close.) Yet, we forget that Daredevil was still very early in the run of the modern superhero film. It’s ultimately a pretty fun movie, especially once Colin Farrell shows up as a super-villain who only gets stronger by chewing more scenery. The costume looked way better than it probably should have. And they definitely laid a foundation on how Matt Murdock’s powers work that was perfected in Daredevil on Netflix season 1. Just like as the caped crusader, Ben Affleck did a great job playing the kind of hero Hollywood needed him to play but some fans bristled at rather than embraced.
Paying homage to this early attempt does no harm to Marvel Studios. In fact, if you want to look at it in an almost clinically cynical way, it’s the ultimate dunk on them. “Oh look, you’re a cute little side universe. Let’s see what’s behind another door.” Yet, I don’t think that’s what this is about. Especially now, Kevin Feige, Victoria Alonso, and the rest of the Marvel Studios braintrust understands how people react when something shows up in the MCU. It’s part of it, now. Forever. So, it seems to me like it’s their way of acknowledging that effort and the people out there who did enjoy the film.
Also, Ben Affleck seems to be in a space right now where he doesn’t mind putting a cap on old performances. He’s back as Batman for one last appearance in The Flash Movie this year. He also reprised his Chasing Amy role for formerly estranged pal Kevin Smith’s Jay and Silent Bob: Reboot. Maybe Ben Affleck would jump at the chance to return to Daredevil one last time, as well?
Why We Might Not See This Daredevil In The Multiverse of Madness
Image via 20th Century Studios
As much as I would love to see Ben Affleck return as Daredevil in Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of madness, it feels like a longshot. First, the source comes from Twitter which means it could be just pure fanfiction or just an educated guess. It does feel like something that someone in Marvel or Ben Affleck’s agent’s office might be talking about. Yet, the actor himself has recently said he’s done doing franchise characters. He wants this next phase of his career to be about characters more grounded in reality’s problems than those that require comic book metaphor.
Also, Daredevil was the film where he met his now ex-wife Jennifer Garner. According to both of their public statements, they are on good terms. Yet would they want to work together again? Would he go back if her Elektra character was not included? Or any number of possibilities. Though, I suspect working with the woman he co-parents children with would be much less of a concern than what it would mean for Ben Affleck to return to Daredevil. If he did, would be okay with just a quick wave and goodbye cameo or would he want a meatier role like the other Spider-Men in No Way Home? (Or vice versa?)
If this movie ends with Doctor Stranger forming a multiversal Defenders with X-Men and Daredevil and both Fantastic Four iterations, I’d love it. It’d probably be a huge mess, but it’s my kind of mess. To see the Ben Affleck Daredevil return for something like that would be great. But if the actor has decided to keep the past in the past, well, there’s other ways to honor that contribution. (A flash of Duncan in Kingpin’s office would be dope.)
Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness hits theaters (for now) on May 6, 2022.
What do you think? Would you like to see Ben Affleck return as Daredevil in Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness? Who else do you hope Marvel pulls from their past across movies and TV shows? Share your thoughts, theories, and roster for Multiverse Defenders in the comments below.
Featured image via 20th Century Studios
Joshua M. Patton is a father, veteran, and writer living in Pittsburgh, PA. The first books he read on his own were comics, and he's loved the medium ever since. He is the greatest star-pilot in the galaxy, a cunning warrior, and a good friend. His book "What I Learned: Stories, Essays, and More" is available in print from Amazon and from all electronic booksellers.