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Fridge Brilliance

  • Blue is Jessica's color in the intro, not purple. Symbolically, blue is the color of the sky and sea. It is often associated with depth and stability. It symbolizes trust, loyalty, wisdom, confidence, intelligence, faith, truth, and heaven. Even though not all of those adjectives apply to Jessica, the blue may symbolize her path to stability and confidence after her debacle with Kilgrave.
    • In the intro, Danny's color is green, representing nature, the lush K'un Lun... and his money.
  • Color motifs:
    • The backgrounds often reflect the colors of the Defenders (red for Matt, purple for Jessica, yellow for Luke, and green for Danny). Then there's Alexandra's headquarters which is all in white. Perhaps this reflects that the heroes are completely out of their elements as their signature colors are nowhere to be found.
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    • White light is when all of the colors come together to form a single beam. The antiseptic white of the Midland Circle Financial building represents the first moment that all of the Defenders come together as one to fight the Hand. It also represents the site of the final battle where all of the Defenders come together to work as one; every other scene where the quartet show up as a group either is missing one of them, or they're in disharmony.
    • Yellow and purple, the respective colors for Luke and Jessica, are one pair of opposites on the color wheel. They are the ones with super-strength. Red and green, the respective colors of Matt and Danny, are another pair of opposites. They are the ones who practice martial arts and were trained in them for the purpose of fighting the Hand.
    • In episode 5, when Jessica goes to take Trish somewhere safe, the restaurant Trish is in has a notable blue color scheme. When they escape to the dance hall above while chased by Murakami, the new room still has some blue lights but a very prominent red color scheme. Sure enough, moments later, Matt shows up as backup in his Daredevil costume for the first time on the show.
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    • At the end of the first episode, as the camera pans around Matt, the emergency sirens splash the walls of his apartment in the four colors, foreshadowing the teamup to come.
    • The Royal Dragon has a neon sign that features all of the Defenders colors, red, blue, yellow, and green. This represents how this is where the Defenders finally begin to team up and foreshadows them becoming more united as the series goes on.
      • In fact, when Jessica temporarily departs from the group, the establishing shot changes to the restaurant's upper sign that lacks any blue.
  • Alexandra is the de facto leader of the hand and speaks her chosen language: English. Madame Gao and Bakuto act somewhat subservient to Alexandra and speak English as well, rather than their native languages. But Murakami speaks his chosen language -Japanese- regardless of his company, showing that he is at the same level as Alexandra and is not threatened or bullied by her influence.
    • When working with Wilson Fisk, Madame Gao spoke her chosen language -Chinese- until Fisk revealed that he understood Chinese. Fisk put himself on a even level with Gao, and so Gao treated Fisk with more respect and switched to English for the rest of the season.
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    • Also Murakami, like Nobu is quite arrogant and won't change language out of pride.
  • Luke is a little hesitant to admit that Matt's billy club gimmick is "kinda cool" because he's using it on Sowande - as the only one of the four that's been experimented on, torture is still clearly a sore spot for him. Fortunately Sowande's an asshole.
    • Additionally, no doubt the image of a white man (Matt) engaging in an extra-judicial strangling of a black man (Sowande) is probably stirring up some conflicts for Luke, given that he grew up in Georgia.
  • Jessica notes that she's the only person who doesn't know karate. (Luke doesn't know Eastern martial arts either, but he has his training as a Force Recon Marine to fall back on, and his super durability gives him some leeway). This comes to bite her in the ass when she goes up against Murakami in his attempt to kill Trish, and gets handily defeated in a matter of seconds, not even managing to land a punch. However, Matt, who has no physical super strength, holds his own. Jessica relies on her super strength as a blunt instrument with no finesse because her enemies in her own series don't have it and Luke doesn't require anything more since he never had to really exert himself, whereas Matt has decades of training and experience needed to fight supernatural ninjas. Superior strength doesn't mean shit when you don't know how to use it effectively.
  • Why is Danny the most enthusiastic about putting together a Super Team? Well, he lived in K'un-L'un at the time of the Incident, and therefore A.) the concept of a team of superheroes is still novel to him and B.) he hasn't witnessed the backlash against the Avengers or the fallout from "The Incident". Also, he desperately wants friends because he and Colleen are very lonely people.
  • It's appropriate that a Nirvana song would be used for the trailer music, since we saw during Jessica's brief period living with Kilgrave in her childhood house that she was a fan of them in her teenage years.
  • Like in the comics, Shao-Lao the Undying is not simply a boastful title. Each new Iron Fist has to kill him, but he is reborn afterwards because of the Substance already present in his bones.
  • When Luke and Danny first team up, Run the Jewels is played. Aside from the hip hop motif in both Luke Cage (2016) and Iron Fist (2017), the two heroes parallel the two rappers. The white El-P is from New York City like Danny, while the black Killer Mike is from Georgia like Luke. Plus their symbol, two hands making a fist and a gun are pretty fitting for the Iron Fist and a bulletproof man.
  • The fact that Danny can open and unlock doors created by K'un L'un gives greater weight to why the Iron Fist is so important as the guardian of Kun Lun's gates. Without him being on duty, the monks of K'un L'un may not be able to open or close whatever gates lead into their city, leaving them trapped or vulnerable until the Iron Fist returns.
  • Look closely at the group's plates during their meal at the Royal Dragon: all of the guys have food on their plates, but Jessica's plate is noticeably empty. Either Jessica is not hungry, or more likely, she isn't eating because she associates Chinese food with Kilgrave, as Kilgrave took Jessica to a Chinese restaurant the night she fell under his control.
  • The opening foreshadows the interaction between the characters between the crossover:
    • There is a long shot with Matt and Jessica symbolizing the two of them gaining intel on the other (Matt already knows about her when he meets her due to reading the files Foggy had given him, and she knows about his past). Also they were the only two who spend the whole year in New York City (Luke spent time in prison down in Georgia, Danny took a trip to China with Claire and Colleen) and in their respective series they were looking for evidence in someone.
    • There is a shorter shot with Luke and Danny symbolizing the two of them bonding. It's shorter that the first one because when Jessica and Matt were investigating, Danny was asleep.
    • When Danny's fist glows, Luke is switched with Matt because of their connection with the Hand, but it's short because they don't connect on anything else.
    • Lastly there is Luke and Jessica which is the shortest of the shoots because they already know each other and their interactions are kept short (multiples lines each times but not an actual conversation) until their last scene is the last episode.
    • Likewise, the pairs Luke / Matt and Danny / Jessica weren't explored.
  • A question many fans had regarding Captain America: Civil War, is why Tony Stark doesn't recruit Daredevil or Luke Cage, instead of Spider-Man. We get the answer here: Matt retired after Elektra died and Luke just getting out of jail at the start of this series and with their respective seasons taking place several months before Civil War and a year before this series, they were unavailable to Tony Stark, so Spider-Man was his best option at the time.
    • In addition, any psych profile on Luke would show that his loyalties lie in helping the people of Harlem and has little loyalty to law enforcement or care for the greater superhero conflicts. Tony would know that even if Luke was available, he likely wouldn't be willing to get involved in the Avengers conflict in the first place.
  • A question a number of fans had regarding Iron Fist (2017) is why Claire didn't offer to bring Matt in to assist Danny when he and Colleen decided to take their fight against the Hand to Madame Gao. That question is handled here in The Defenders: Matt has retired from Daredevil activities after Elektra's death and probably even made that clear to Claire.
  • There's a nice Call-Back in Matt and Karen's meal at the diner in "The H Word" to the angry remarks Karen made to Matt after Frank Castle's trial went down in flames, showing how Karen sees Matt (and Daredevil by extension) in a new light now that she knows the secret:
    • In "Guilty as Sin":
    Karen Page: You're right. This city really needs heroes, but you're not one of them.
    • In "The H Word":
    Karen Page: I really think Daredevil may have made the city a safer place.
    Matt Murdock: He might have. But right now, the city's better off without him.
    Karen Page: Hmm. Well it's better off with Matt Murdock.
  • As Matt, Jessica and Luke are taking the PATH train to Midland Circle after their jailbreak from the precinct, look at the advertisement Luke is sitting in front of: it's a poster with four people holding hands, and it's from Rand Enterprises. It's appropriate as Danny was the one advocating that they work as a team of four, and here's Matt, Jessica and Luke headed to rescue Danny.
  • In "Ashes, Ashes," it at first seems odd why Matt seems to dominate Danny during his fight against him. Now it would be so easy to say that Matt is simply the better fighter and leave it at that. But there's a reason why Matt is able to fight and seemingly defeat Danny without him summoning the Iron Fist: Matt has been out fighting almost every night since he became Daredevil, and on the nights he isn't fighting, he's blowing off steam at Fogwell's Gym. In addition to Stick's training, Matt also has a great deal of experience in street fighting since average criminals, whether they be Wilson Fisk or street assassins like Healy and Rance, aren't trained in that sort of fighting. This means that Matt has a very unorthodox fighting style which makes him unpredictable to someone like Danny who always fights with an orthodox style. Combine that with Matt's super-senses which gives him a faster reaction time and being able to predict movement, it is easy to see why Matt seem to dominating Danny during their fight.
  • It seems odd but in each of the big fight setpieces between the Defenders and the Hand, the heroes always seem to get the upper hand. And there's many reasons for it that are noticeable on rewatch:
    • Each Hand finger's powerbase is in their mother country: Sowande is somewhere in Africa, Bakuto is in Brazil, Madame Gao is in China, Murakami is in Japan, and Alexandra is in New York City. They only get together whenever they need dragon bones.
    • Murakami left Nobu in charge of his section of the Hand: Nobu's group was the true Ninja one. We never found out how many of his elite fighters existed, how long they took to train, and how many were lost. Considering Murakami liked to keep to himself, we never know how much he cared about them. So he'd have to rely on Bakuto's pre-existing martial thugs while training new ninjas.
    • Gao, Murakami, Sowande and Bakuto were unaware there was no substance left due to Alexandra making an executive decision without their permission. So they were less prepared because they thought the possibility of death was slim. On top of that, Alexandra accelerated their plans six months, further complicating matters. Because of this, no contingencies were put in place, and bringing in players from overseas would take time.
    • At the Royal Dragon, they were trying to capture Danny alive, so they couldn't shoot up or explode the place (this is why Madame Gao shot that goon in the back of the head), and Matt, Luke and Jessica were in the same location most of the time. Luke Cage even shields the others from gunfire a few times. Bakuto taught Danny how to cure Colleen's poison with his chi when trying to win his trust, so that leaves not many options open for exploration. Gas could be possible but chances are Matt would hear them, so that would leave political interference but the Hand like to stay quiet.
    • Last but not least, the Hand rarely ever faced true threats, and when they did in the past they were still immortal. This has made them cocky, not to mention hindered their martial skills over the years. Their superhuman strength would have only further added to this. If Matt can best Nobu without too much trouble in their rematch in Daredevil season 2, then Matt can totally take on Murakami considering both him and Nobu have lived for a long time. We also know as demonstrated by Harold Meachum that constantly coming back to life "strips away part of your soul". Who knows what affect it's had on the Fingers' minds by now, especially considering how long they've lived?
    • There's a reason why Murakami keeps getting beaten by Matt and Danny even though he is said to be dangerous and skilled: because Matt and Danny both have first hand experience from their own shows and have an understanding on how the Hand fights. They both know how to counter their fighting style. Murakami would likely stand a fairer chance if he fought Matt or Danny one on one. Whenever he fights a Defender, they are always supported by another and there is only so much you can do when you fight a martial artist and a superhuman.
  • A visual clue to cue the audience in that Alexandra is masterminding the earthquake is the white light emitted when Matt opens his refrigerator right as the shaking starts.
  • Misty Knight's shift from Luke's story to Jessica's story is visible when she shows up at the dive apartment through the colors: there's yellow lighting as Misty arrives at the crime scene, the color associated with Luke, and this turns to blue tones as she enters the scene and crosses paths with Jessica. When she follows Jessica out of the crime scene, the blue tones stay.
  • If the lighting in each segment is meant to represent the presence of our heroes, it's interesting that any scene with Matt has a variable amount of red in it. In the beginning it's limited to background lights and warm brown tones (like when he's practicing legal arguments in his apartment / litigating in court, or when he's having lunch with Karen), but as the series progresses we see more and more red surrounding Matt until he finally puts on the suit again, in which the scene is practically saturated in red. This all ties in with Matt's initial conflict in the series of keeping himself from becoming Daredevil again. In support of this, the lighting in each of the other Defenders' segments is fairly even throughout, symbolizing their unwavering commitment to their respective ideals.
  • Why does Matt take the stairs entering Midland Circle when Jessica simply takes the elevator? The answer is made when you consider the elevator teaser, which depicts the heroes leaving after the fight is over: it's security camera footage. Matt took the stairs up to avoid the cameras which might reveal his identity, whereas Jessica took the elevator because she doesn't care about someone seeing her face or not. Now go back to the elevator teaser, as they escape down the elevator. The same elevator Matt had wanted to avoid because he didn’t want anyone to see his face. Now if you look closely, Matt’s mouth is moving as if he’s telling them something and Jessica looks sharply at him, and then back at the camera, and then reaches up to smash it. She's smashing the camera to protect his identity.
  • When Alexandra gives Elektra the order to kill the rest of the Defenders just before Elektra kills her, she refers to Matt as the Devil of Hell's Kitchen, "whoever he is." At first this seems like a case of Failed a Spot Check, since Daredevil has been a major thorn in the Hand's side and she saw Matt in civvies and without his scarf-mask back at the Royal Dragon. However, this actually opens the way for a slew of Fridge Brilliance:
    • When Alexandra appeared to the group at the Royal Dragon, Matt was the only one she didn't speak to; in fact, he stood apart from the rest and didn't say a word or do anything that would draw attention to himself. This was likely intentional, as his identity was on the line.
    • Matt is the only Defender to lead a double life, and therefore is the only one to attempt or even need to keep his identity hidden. Alexandra staying in the dark is just proof that he's doing a really good job.
    • Matt's battles all happened with Nobu's, and by extension Murakami's branch of the Hand. Given that Murakami tends to keep to himself and has a well-established hatred of Alexandra, it's likely that he didn't tell her about Matt's actions (if Nobu told him at all).
    • Alexandra doesn't appear to recognize Luke either, despite the fact that Luke is a much higher-profile hero who was featured extensively in the news when Diamondback was painting him as a Cop Killer. In addition, she doesn't seem to have a clue who Jessica is before being introduced to her via SUV. While she namedrops the heroes later, it's implied that the Hand doesn't keep tabs on all goings-on in the city, only those that involve them somehow.
    • In short, it's all a subtle and steady foreshadowing that the Hand is not the invincible beast it touts itself to be, and that there are chinks in the armor.
    • There's also some Brilliance to the Hand continuing to call Matt "The Devil of Hell's Kitchen." Think about how they talk to and about Danny Rand as the Iron Fist. They're casual, even dismissive. Now, some of that may be because he's Danny Rand, but also, this series reveals that the Hand was founded by expelled members of K'un-L'un. They know the Iron Fist, they know who he is, what he's capable of, what his strengths and weaknesses are. Alexandra even brags about killing one at one point, and it's doubtful she's the only Finger who's done it. They've spent centuries learning how to deal with their nemesis. Now, think about what they know about Matt: He's interfered in their business in Hell's Kitchen twice (ruining their allegiances with Wilson Fisk), he's somehow connected to the Chaste through Elektra and Stick (and likely because of his fighting style). . . and that's it. They don't know who he is, what he wants, his strengths or weaknesses, what he's capable of, what his motives are for continuing to stick his nose in their business. They have no idea how to go about confronting, controlling, or killing him. Danny Rand may be the Immortal Iron Fist, sworn enemy of the Hand, but Matt Murdock, the Devil of Hell's Kitchen, is their boogeyman. Using the more dramatic name indicates that, while they'd never admit it, the Fingers are scared of Daredevil, because they have no idea how to deal with him.
  • Why does Murakami hate Alexandra so much? Apart from his stated reasons of not wanting to leave K'un-L'un with her and simply not trusting her, it was his branch of the Hand that acquired the property that would become Midland Circle, oversaw the excavation leading down to the dragon bones and hunted the Black Sky for themselves. Alexandra stole his great weapon, hijacked his operations and is now asking him to serve her. Whose pride could withstand that kind of punishment?
  • By the end of Daredevil (2015) season 2, Matt's personal life was mostly in tatters, and he only just starts rebuilding things with Karen and Foggy by the time The Defenders rolls around. By "dying" in Midland Circle and getting reborn, he's basically now on the same page as Wilson Fisk for Daredevil season 3: an opponent who lost everything and is now trying to restore his personal life and professional reputation (which is easy for Matt, but going to be harder for Fisk given the public knows his role in the deaths of Detective Blake and numerous other cops).
    • In fact, Matt has switched places with Fisk. Fisk lost everything in season 1, and much of his empire fell because of internal disruption of the organization (Wesley's death at Karen's hands, Fisk being too focused on his relationship with Vanessa, etc.). Matt has lost everything over the span of season 2 and The Defenders, concurrent with Fisk regaining power from prison.
    • Despite never being mentioned once, Wilson Fisk has a very lurking presence in The Defenders. Fisk is the one who helped the Hand acquire the lot on which they constructed Midland Circle. Likewise, Karen and Foggy make similar remarks to Matt about him being careless with his secret identity, at a time when we know Fisk is looking into Matt.
  • How did Matt think to check the piano when he and Jessica were at the Raymonds' place? Well, in season 2 of Daredevil, Frank mentioned to Karen in one scene that his son used to hide cookies in his piano bench at home. Karen probably mentioned that story to Matt at some point in between season 2 and The Defenders, so when Lexi said her father spent a lot of time just sitting at the piano, Matt was reminded of Frank's anecdote and thought to take a closer look.
  • It seems odd at first that Sowande was able to move into the scene without much of an effort. But remember that much like a bunch of new gangs moved into Hell's Kitchen after Matt took down Fisk, the gang scene in Harlem was greatly disrupted by the events of Luke Cage. All the big gangs are in disarray due to their bosses being killed, Cottonmouth is dead, Diamondback is in jail, Mariah and Shades are laying low. Perfect opportunity for Sowande to move in and start recruiting men for the Hand without raising too much attention.
  • One of the reasons why Matt adores Jessica so much is because of his life philosophy. He fully believes in being a noble person who should fight to protect the weak. But he also absolutely hates it when someone apart from him exposes themselves to danger, which is the reason why he gets upset with Karen and Foggy when they go off and make choices of their own that put them in danger. So Jessica with her "I don’t want to get involved” attitude is his dream come true. He prays (literally) that Foggy and Karen would someday start avoiding danger instead of diving headfirst into it. But then Jessica also goes ahead and put herself at great risk when Trish, Malcolm and others need it, which makes Matt respect her a lot.
  • It seems kinda a stretch to believe that the Hand could raze Elena Cardenas' tenement, dig their pit, and construct Midland Circle, all in the span of about a year and a half to two years. By comparison, most buildings the size of Midland Circle would take at least two to three years to build, and additional years tied up in red tape. Except, the Hand have been established to have political connections at City Hall, in addition to politicians they used to have until Fisk was arrested, which allowed them to silence the press coverage of the earthquake, and also would have allowed them to expedite construction.
  • After his initial reaction, Foggy seems resigned to the fact that Matt is gone, whereas Karen is in denial and even in The Punisher (2017) is still visibly torn up about Matt being gone.
    • Time and intensity of relationship plays a great deal into Foggy’s emotions after the outcome of Midland Circle. Foggy's resigned acceptance is because of everyone involved, he was the most prepared for something like this happening to Matt. Remember that he first found out Matt's secret identity by finding Matt bleeding half to death from his fight with Nobu and Fisk, and Foggy later dragged a concussed Matt home from getting shot by Frank. In fact, Foggy seems to have been half expecting the worst to happen since "Nelson v. Murdock," so by the time Matt “dies” here, it’s an awful thing and he’s clearly sad about it, but he’s also able to outwardly deal with it so he can focus on other things, like the job he has to do as far as helping to cover up for this entire mess, and being a support to a clearly more emotional Karen. Of course, on the same token, we don't have enough of a view into his day to day life to make any judgements on how he’s actually dealing with Matt’s death (with us only getting subtle hints in his appearance in Luke Cage season 2), but if Karen's behavior in The Punisher is anything, Foggy is continually mourning in private but puts on a brave face during the day. The other people who met Matt pre-Defenders have interesting contrasts with Foggy:
    • Claire has a similarly subdued reaction about the whole thing, which initially seems odd since she was actually emotionally involved with Matt for a while. But on the other hand, she hasn’t been in Matt’s life for a while, she's been in Luke and Danny's lives, so she's got the benefit of emotional distance from the situation. Also, she probably has the same perspective as Foggy, in that Matt was going to get himself seriously hurt or killed and now that it actually happened, it’s not a terrible surprise. She also acknowledges the heroism in his death, which is very in character…she was always the one who was willing to acknowledge what being Daredevil meant to him, even if she didn’t always agree with how he went about it.
    • Compared to Claire and Foggy, Karen is very emotional and torn up about Matt's "death", even in denial. Given that it's implied Matt and Karen haven't spoken much since Nelson & Murdock broke up, it seems she hasn’t had all that much time to process and come to terms with Matt’s other identity, and possibly hadn’t even come to terms with it at all. Combine that with the fact that only a couple of days ago she was trying to make some moves to rebuild their friendship and relationship, and Matt's "death" is a big shock to her. The fact that Karen's last words with Matt weren’t positive (no one wants their last words with a dead friend to be crappy ones) is another thing that would weigh heavily on her. And it's still affecting her even in The Punisher, as Karen's grief over Matt colors all of her interactions with Frank. She's latching onto Frank and using him to work through her issues over losing Matt.
  • When Jeri Hogarth tracks Jessica down to the city archives to ask her to exercise caution on the John Raymond matter, Jessica asks Jeri if she's having her followed intentionally. Jessica Jones (2015) season 2 reveals that Jeri had come into contact with Pryce Cheng after she and Jessica had their falling out in the aftermath of the saga with Kilgrave, and thus, it was Cheng who told Jeri where Jessica was.
  • When Trish and Karen are comparing their respective relationships with Jessica and Matt, Trish say to Karen that, "Jessica's a good friend, too. I mean, not in the traditional sense. You can't rely on her to move a couch or plan a party... But when it comes to the real stuff, the stuff that'll last forever..." While the comparison may seemingly fall flat on Karen's end due to Matt's flakiness during Frank Castle's trial, it actually does make a lot of sense: even though Matt may have flaked out on Frank's trial and been all unreliable and that, he was there for Karen when Fisk was trying to have her killed, and he rescued her when the Hand kidnapped her as bait.
  • Misty's investment in wanting to save Cole's life makes more sense when taking into account that she blames herself for the death of Cole's sister.

Fridge Horror

  • Iron Fist (2017) established that every time the Hand resurrects someone from the dead, they lose a piece of their soul and eventually go mad. It's even worse for Elektra: she murders the woman who treated her as a daughter to usurp her position as the leader of the Hand and want the same thing as they do.
  • At the end of Daredevil's second season, Matt believes that he broke his own no-kill code after he knocked Nobu off the building which is part of the reason he retired his costume besides Elektra's death. Come The Defenders and he is more ruthless now even willing to blow up a building to stop the Hand once and for all, something his previous self would have resisted doing at any costs. He doesn't know that Nobu didn't die at his hands, but actually Stick's, and considering Stick died in this series, Matt likely will never know that he didn't actually cross the one line. As far as he knows, he's given validity to Frank Castle's "You're one bad day away from becoming me" remark.
  • On a rewatch of Daredevil season 2, there's an interaction between Stick and Elektra that becomes very important in The Defenders because it pretty much signposts a LOT of important stuff about Matt.
    Stick: He came to save you.
    Elektra: I don’t need to be saved.
    Stick: From yourself, girl. He knew that killing me would’ve been your point of no return, so he stopped you. He thinks you’re worth saving. Earn that.
    • So when Matt wakes up in the precinct, he's freaking out because he’s wearing an NYPD shirt, has been drugged and knocked out, and falls apart as he tells Foggy that Elektra killed Stick. But not only is he processing the fact that he just lost Stick, the father figure whom he still loved (despite being manipulated, abandoned, and rejected over and over again), he is processing that he has lost Elektra completely. That the Elektra who earned her redemption by throwing herself in front of Nobu’s blade both to save Matt and deny the Hand their Black Sky is gone. That he can never get Elektra back again. And yet, even in their final confrontation down in the pit below Midland Circle, he still holds out that tiny bit of hope that maybe the Elektra he knew is still there, because he’s Matt. He will always believe in redemption. He has to, or else he’s damned. Stick was an asshole who weaponized children, and fucked them up because he loved them (in a very twisted way). But that moment isn’t just about losing Stick. It’s about losing hope.
    • Basically, Matt tries so hard to believe that he is worthy of love, but everyone leaves him. His mother, his father. Stick. Elektra. Claire. Foggy. Karen. Over and over again, he ends up alone. And yet he still keeps trying to find some way to prove to people that he’s worth coming back to. He just doesn’t understand what he’s doing wrong. Again, because he’s Matt.
    • And the thing about love is that it's not a merit badge. You don’t complete a checklist in order to earn it. It’s about letting people in. It’s about allowing people to love you and allowing yourself to be loved. But because Matt's life-long experience has been "If I allow myself to love and be loved, then I will be abandoned," so he puts up walls to try and protect himself. And it’s because of those walls that he actually drives people away. It becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy.
    • This reflects greatly on his relationships with Foggy and Karen, who he has constantly said are the two most important people to him. But he’s absolutely terrified of being vulnerable around them and really letting them in. Because every time he has been close to someone, they leave him. So he keeps them both at a distance, thinking that’s better for everyone, when it’s better for absolutely no one.
    • Which means that The Defenders marks the end of a chapter for Matt; he’s basically going to be starting from scratch in Daredevil season 3, as he begins to realize that he needs Foggy and Karen in his life, and that pushing them away has not done him ANY favors, nor has it done any good for Foggy or for Karen. The Defenders is the beginning of a new chapter in Matt's life, where it’s not about who Matt's lost, but about who comes back. Starting with his mother, and then continuing on to Karen and Foggy, which will be an absolute necessity for Matt since with Fisk scheming revenge against him, Matt will need to have allies.
  • Karen repeatedly expresses concern about the possibility of Matt being exposed. Given that Wilson Fisk is already beginning to have suspicions about Matt being more than just part of the law firm that put him down, she has every right to worry.
  • Did Jeri sic Foggy on Jessica purely as a means of damage control? That is, was she just putting a junior lawyer on it? Or does she suspect/know about his connection with the Daredevil and wanted him on that so that when Jessica's work went sideways she'd have some help?