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In Daredevil #78:
billboard for Ocean's Twelve:
movie with Mormon characters

Below: Daredevil (Matt Murdock) and Elektra swing past a giant billboard advertising the movie "Ocean's Twelve" (2004). Two of the titular characters in this movie (Turk and Virgil Malloy) are Latter-day Saints. An opening scene in the film takes place at a wedding luncheon attended by their bishop. Ocean's Twelve is the sequel to Ocean's Eleven, which holds the record as the highest-grossing feature film ever to feature a Latter-day Saint as a major character.

Source: Daredevil (vol. 2) #78 (December 2005), Marvel Entertainment Group: New York City, page 7; story titled "The Murdock Papers: Part Three"; written by Brian Michael Bendis, illustrated by Alex Maleev; reprinted in Daredevil: The Murdock Papers trade paperback, Marvel Entertainment Group: New York City (2006).

Daredevil and Elektra swing past a billboard for Ocean's Twelve
This splash page is takes place at a critical juncture in "The Murdock Papers" storyline. In previous issues during the critically acclaimed run on Daredevil by writer Brian Michael Bendis, Daredevil's secret identity as blind attorney Matt Murdock has been outed by one of New York City's biggest tabloid newspapers.

Following this revelation, the Kingpin makes a deal with federal prosecutors to hand over evidence he claims to have collected that proves Murdock is Daredevil. The legal system can not prosecute Murdock for his vigilante activities, however, because they lack evidence that proves Murdock is Daredevil, and Murdock publicly denies being Daredevil. Murdock has just re-united with his wife Milla after many months of separation and is unaware of the news breaking about the Kingpin telling the press about the existence of the "Murdock papers." Elektra tracks down Murdock and tells him about the papers, and they race to the law offices where the papers are supposedly stored.

The splash page shows Elektra and Daredevil racing from the hotel where Murdock reunited with his wife, on their way to get the Murdock papers, so they can keep these files from being used to prosecute Murdock.

It is revealed soon thereafter that there really are no "Murdock papers," and that Kingping made up a story about this evidence in order to trick Daredevil into trying to abscond with the papers. The fact that Daredevil really did show up at the scene where the papers were supposed to be stored, spilling blood there that would prove that Murdock and Daredevil are the same person (after being shot by a sniper - Paladin), gives federal prosecutors enough to indict Murdock.

It is not entirely clear why a billboard for the feature film Ocean's Twelve appears in the background of this panel. Perhaps the billboard was actually in the scene that artist Alex Maleev used for photo reference. It is more likely, however, that there is some thematic significance to the presence of this poster in the scene. Perhaps the artist and/or writer showed this poster because of some commonality between the way both this Daredevil storyline and the movie use a clever, multi-layered ruse. The Kingpin uses a ruse and deception to trap Murdock and hand him over to prosecutors in a way one could say has parallels to the clever plot by the antagonist character in Ocean's Twelve. One major difference is that in Ocean's Twelve the titular protagonist characters, led by "Danny Ocean", have a clever ruse of their own that allows them to win the battle of wits central to the film. ("Danny Ocean" was played by George Clooney, the son of former Utah anchorman Nick Clooney.) In "The Murdock Papers," Matt Murdock/Daredevil has no such plan and is completely unaware of Kingpin's mechanations until it is entirley too late. Murdock ends up simply being cornered by federal agents, and rather than involving his friends and associates in a fight with the federal government, he allows himself to be arrested.

Webpage created 4 June 2006. Last modified 4 June 2006.