ustas_fish (just_ustas) wrote,
ustas_fish
just_ustas

Nelson: "You're just a guy, right?"

Nelson has well intentions and he’s probably hurting more than the rest of them, but the constant fighting and the screaming is certainly not helping. Frank gets tired quickly of seeing Red shrink into himself and space out. Looking like he’s not really there - floating away from what’s hurting him and getting trapped in his head. He pulls the blonde aside, makes sure not to hurt him by fisting his clothes instead of his neck like he wants for a second there. He isn’t sure when they start fighting each other too, but Frank has enough of it.

“I don’t care how difficult it is to keep your cool, screaming at him about the same goddamn things over and over again won’t change shit!” He growls into his face, ignoring the teary, desperate eyes the man stares him with. “Red doesn’t work with words, Nelson, he works with actions, you know that, you know him .” He lets go of his suit, jamming a finger into his chest. “So maybe you gotta get your head straight, because fighting him won’t cut it. Red’s used to fighting, he knows fighting, he’ll always win you in one because that’s how he does things. For you, it’s a situation, a moment you can go home and forget about or think over later. For Matt, that’s his life, yeah? That’s not how you win him over and it certainly won’t help him get himself out of whatever place he’s got himself into.”
_____

“You’re right,” Nelson whispers once, sitting by Matt’s bedside, watching his best friend’s weak frame. “I know better. Screaming and fighting Matt never got me anywhere.” He shakes his head. “Should’ve known after the blind ninja mentor thing.”

Frank frowns, but doesn’t ask. It’s Red’s story to tell.

“And God only knows how much pain he’s in right now,” Foggy shakes his head again, pinching his nose, turning to glance at Frank when he lets his hands fall. “At law school, he used to beat himself up so much if he got anything less than a 10, you know that? He’d just get this quiet look about ‘im. Like he had disappointed someone.”
________


That’s his life, yeah? And it is. Nelson fights in court or fights Matt about his Daredevil thing and he can go home, can hide in a safe place where he can unwind, think clearly about things. Red is constantly surrounded by the noises, the cries for help, two many fucking heartbeats and scumbags and he can hear them all crawling and creeping around. He’s probably been fighting from the moment he got blind, probably even before. The last thing he needs is another goddamn fight.

Only good it will do is throw them in a loop. They would fight, Matt would push them away, attack the very thing he needs because he simply cannot bear the thought of losing it. He’d become reckless, push himself too hard, reach a breaking point and Frank would be there, picking up the pieces, if there were any left to find.

...something poetic about things that get left behind.

_________________

No item of men’s apparel can give more pleasure, or cause more grief, than his hat. It should have quality, it should have style, it should be appropriate to the occasion, and it should be becoming. A well selected Knapp-Felt fills the bill in every particular.

Agreed. It's played for laughs or played straight in the show, but continually insisting that Matt's senses are creepy or a deliberate disregard for dignity is a bit of a stretch when he can't just turn the abilities on or off.

This is a winning combination of Matt venting/standing up for himself. He so often reacts to ableist comments with humor but that would be so tiring.

First of all, I want to address the “lying” part of that accusation. Matt does not lie about his enhanced senses because he enjoys lying or wants to make fools of his friends. As you explained, Matt was forced to hide his enhanced senses since childhood, as that was the only defence a poor, disabled, orphaned boy had against being further exploited, experimented on, or worse. This situation is not so different from staying in the closet to avoid being targeted and attacked by homophobes, yet Foggy twists this necessary camouflage into something entirely about his own hurt feelings about “not being trusted”. Foggy claims to be Matt’s friend, yet doesn’t seem to consider the consequences Matt could face if Foggy even accidentally reveals this secret. The possibility of Matt being made into a lab rat should more than justify having hurt Foggy’s feelings, which Matt apologized for.

In addition, canonically Foggy didn’t even try to understand this situation from Matt’s point of view. Instead, Foggy claimed he would never keep secrets from his friend — which is easy for him to say, since Foggy had a safe and loving childhood without being repeatedly traumatized, orphaned, abandoned, abused and trained as a child soldier, and left to cope on his own with a life-limiting disability and an overwhelming mutation that made him a target for exploitation. I believe that Matt’s reluctance to share his enhanced senses with anyone is entirely justified by the danger posed by exposure. However, there is yet another layer of complication in that there is no way for Matt to explain how he uses his senses without also having to relive all of his most traumatic experiences. It is no wonder that Matt struggles to talk about these issues, and Foggy’s angry inquisition in S1E10 is no way to support a trauma survivor. Once again, Foggy shows absolutely no compassion for Matt’s point of view, and instead holds a grudge that Matt hasn’t met Foggy’s expectations of friendship.

Secondly, I want to address Foggy’s aversion to Matt’s enhanced senses, calling them “weird and invasive”. Foggy claimed he was angry that Matt’s senses “invade others’ privacy” (which Matt cannot help) — yet when Matt admitted that he played along with Foggy’s lies to afford his friend some privacy, Foggy got angry about that, too! Foggy puts Matt in a no-win situation, blaming Matt for things he cannot control, and then blaming Matt for his good intentions. Notice that Foggy still feels absolutely no guilt about lying to Matt, yet was angry at Matt for not telling him when he knew Foggy was lying!

A sighted person would have also been able to detect when Foggy was lying (almost everyone has “tells”), and most people would choose not to call out their friend on an embarrassing lie. So what exactly is Foggy mad about? There is simply no other way to interpret these double standards and unfair accusations than to conclude that Foggy is rejecting Matt for having atypical senses, which is blatant discrimination.

Thirdly, I want to address Foggy’s conclusion that Matt’s enhanced senses mean that he is not disabled. You have done an amazing job of pointing out that Matt is ACTUALLY BLIND! Once again, Foggy is being hypocritical, labelling Matt’s senses as being invasive because Matt can detect “private” information. Yet visual inspection constantly detects things that people would rather keep private, simply by observation of facial expressions and body language. Just because it is common for people to use their sight to invade privacy does not mean it is anything other than a way of collecting information people would not voluntarily share. I really admired the way you had Matt point out that using sight is just as invasive as using hearing, yet no one expects everyone to wear blindfolds. So once again Foggy is being hypocritical and prejudiced, as his anger is apparently because Matt collects this information in an atypical way.

I was really disappointed that the writers of Daredevil did not correct Foggy’s false assumptions regarding Matt’s disability. Your explanation should be canon: just because Matt can use his other senses to compensate for some (not all) of the disadvantages of blindness, that does not mean his other senses can replace sight! Plus there is a huge cost in terms of energy and attention for Matt to process and filter the sensory input available to him so he can do what other people do rapidly and effortlessly by sight, such as navigating walking down a sidewalk. And then there are the things he will never be able to do, such as distinguish two dimensional information (text, colour, etc.), and the finer details of contour, facial expressions, etc.

Last but not least, Matt’s enhanced senses can also be a huge liability. He is constantly in danger of sensory overload, as it takes energy and discipline to filter the overwhelming amount of sensory information he receives, and focus on what is useful. This in itself is exhausting, plus he is constantly forced to endure painful stimuli that others don’t even have to worry about (ie. fabrics that feel like sandpaper on his skin, smells and tastes that overpower and nauseate, sounds that hurt his ears, etc.). I can’t even imagine how painful Matt’s wounds must be, considering his nerves are so much more sensitive than a normal person’s, and Matt can’t even take painkillers for fear of his senses being scrambled. Foggy has never even bothered asking Matt about the disadvantages of his enhanced senses.

So basically, after S1E10 Foggy is canonically a horrible friend who never gives Matt the benefit of the doubt. In the case of Matt’s senses, rather than try to listen to and understand Matt’s explanations, Foggy immediately jumps to the false assumption that Matt is effectively sighted in every way, and that the accommodations for Matt’s disability have all been unnecessary. This depiction of Foggy just didn’t mesh with the previous characterization of Foggy as a caring, generous person who wants to help others. As such, I am really glad that you have allowed Foggy the chance to redeem himself, and start considering Matt’s point of view. I really missed the affectionate friendship these two had in the first nine episodes of season 1.

Oh my god, thank you so much for this epic and awesome comment that articulates everything I despised about Foggy's reaction to Matt's senses post-reveal. The show-runners obviously had zero sympathy or empathy toward what it must have been like for Matt to grow up with his only parent and protector ripped from him and being pushed into an unstable environment that triggered his supersenses so violently that he had to rely on his abuser, Stick, to help him control them or be tossed into the streets by the very nuns so unsympathetic to his cries of pain.

And I'll be buttered as a biscuit if Stick didn't impress upon Matt (or if Matt himself didn't understand) the deadly need for secrecy about what his child soldier training entailed. Matt coming back limping or showing evidence of his abuse had to be concealed as well as his senses, more habits of secrecy ingrained early or he would lose the single emotional support he had going for him and thrown back into the hell he'd just escaped.

Yeah, Foggy, Matt's secrecy and habit of lying to protect himself is all about you. lol.


I am just constantly infuriated at how poorly TV writers treat trauma survivors -- there is no excuse for this gross ignorance, as even a quick Google search would provide sufficient information for show writers to stop making their characters verbally and emotionally abusive towards trauma survivors (don't even get me started on how vilely the showrunners treated Oliver on Arrow!).

You make such a good point, that Matt would have learned from Stick (in the most brutal way possible) to hide any injuries or physical or emotional pain. The nuns apparently never suspected a thing (even Matt's own "mother" didn't notice her son being abused), though of course there was a lot of negligence there as well. Child abuse victims are adversely affected for life, and it is just sickening that TV writers constantly blame trauma survivors for their resulting mental health issues -- when the media supports victim blaming, it contributes to "normalizing" it in society as a whole.

I am just constantly infuriated at how poorly TV writers treat trauma survivors -- there is no excuse for this gross ignorance, as even a quick Google search would provide sufficient information for show writers to stop making their characters verbally and emotionally abusive towards trauma survivors (don't even get me started on how vilely the showrunners treated Oliver on Arrow!).

You make such a good point, that Matt would have learned from Stick (in the most brutal way possible) to hide any injuries or physical or emotional pain. The nuns apparently never suspected a thing (even Matt's own "mother" didn't notice her son being abused), though of course there was a lot of negligence there as well. Child abuse victims are adversely affected for life, and it is just sickening that TV writers constantly blame trauma survivors for their resulting mental health issues -- when the media supports victim blaming, it contributes to "normalizing" it in society as a whole.

Exactly, Foggy is written to be so spoiled and selfish that he doesn't even spare one drop of compassion for Matt's pain and suffering! After watching Season 1 of Daredevil, I foolishly believed that the writers would make Foggy go through some necessary character growth, but instead, they had Foggy punish Matt for prioritizing saving lives over personal and professional obligations. Both Foggy and Karen became completely despicable in how badly they treated Matt, that I found myself hating the hypocrisy and viciousness of Matt's so-called "friends". Why would show writers choose to create such nasty characters? It boggles the mind.

Right? Every time Matt uses his senses or his fighting skills he's reminded. It's the only way he survives--more importantly, it's the only way he fights the demons of self-disgust. It's really a vicious circle. And then along comes Foggy and Karen equating his need to be DD with drug abuse? Thanks a lot, guys. Denigrating one half of the dyad of Matt's self-worth (DD and being a lawyer).

i have,,, a lot of feelings about foggy. he's a good person, but (especially in the hellscape that was season 2) he's not the greatest friend, and i feel that people ignore/can't recognize that because the show is framed from matt's self-hating perspective, and because it never explicitly stated the trauma and depression that motivates his actions (they're pretty damn clear abt it but I've heard people call matt selfish so clearly it wasn't clear enough for Some)
i'm gonna stop myself before I go on a full Matt Defense Rant even tho that's basically what this fic is for me. coming up next, for possibly the first time ever, these grown ass men have a civil conversation and someone actually listens to matt

Concerning the 'telling about Daredevil' thing, even without taking into account Matt's history of abuse, neglect and trauma (which is huge and very real and definitively should be taken into account), am I the only one who thinks that not forcing your best friend to choose between giving you to the police and aiding and abetting your criminal activities, especially when said friend openly disapproved of said activities, is actually a pretty logical choice which does protect both of them, by at least providing plausible deniability? If you were a vigilante, would you tell your anti-vigilantism friend?

I agree; it's hard for people to see Matt's side purely from the show because he rarely defends himself (Catholicism will do that to ya lmao) but he really does make the best decisions with the information he has (unless he can sabotage himself then he'll definitely do that)


Yeah, this goes to the heart of it. When they first meet, Foggy says, "You're just a guy, right?" and in the most privileged way possible ignores what Matt has been through and is struggling with daily. It was really great to read Foggy finally getting a clue, thanks.

but a dd fic im writing separate to this is foggy nelson getting his head out of his ass and apologizing to matt for being a shitty friend, i dunno, all of season 2.

Tags: daredevil
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