All Ink’d Up – Guardian Devil

PoP! spotlights the fans who have permanently branded themselves as geeks.

This latest installment is another PoP! staffer. Take a trip down memory lane as Lee gives us an insight into why in the Hell he needed a guy in a costume permanently branded on him.

I love Daredevil. He’s my favorite super hero, bar none. While Preacher may top my list of all-time favorite comic books, it does so largely thanks to its format. It was a finite series, totalling 60(ish) issues before wrapping. When it comes to the long form comic book, nothing beats Daredevil. For all the whining Spider-Man does about having it hard before he inevitably starts yammering on about power and responsibility, he’s got NOTHING on Daredevil. Here’s a guy who just wants to do the right thing and keep his neighborhood clean but constantly finds himself in a seemingly never-ending shitstorm the likes of which Mr. Parker can only dream of. Of course, writers like Miller, Bendis and Brubaker have carved this gritty niche out for the Man without Fear, but let’s not discount the works of Nocenti (as so many tend to).

But that’s hardly enough to justify a branding. Like most folks, my tattoo has a bit more meaning than that. The image I chose was Joe Quesada’s cover to Daredevil #3. The “Guardian Devil” arc was drawn by the future Marvel Editor in Chief and written by Kevin Smith (you may have heard of him). I got this tattoo in 2006, well into Joe Q’s tenure as EiC, so the man had a stellar track record by then. Plus, I love me some Kevin. And I love me some Daredevil. That’s a winning trifecta of awesomeness in my book. Even so, is that enough? It might be, but my rationale goes one step farther.

Daredevil was relaunched as the flagship title of the Marvel Knights line. Under Quesada’s guidance, this is the book that would eventually give us Brian Michael Bendis in mainstream comics. I’ve said it before, but the Marvel Knights line changed everything. In 1998, Marvel had been in the toilet for a LONG time, so they tried something different and what started in that little office eventually gave birth to the modern age of comics and led to the renaissance we now find ourselves in. Most of what we now consider commonplace in the medium now started because of Marvel Knights and Daredevil. It was the first title to really and truly gripped me back into collecting Marvel comics after a few years of Image and Top Cow books (not that there’s anything wrong with Image and Top Cow books). It reignited my fanboy flame in a serious way.

dd-tatIn short, this run on Daredevil is the birthplace of the 21st century comic book. For that reason, it will always hold a special place in my heart… and on my arm. I’m toying with the idea of adding to it to fill it out to a half-sleeve, but I’m not sure if I want to. Tattoo Tom of Shelbyville Tennessee’s Unique Skin & Ink does all my tattoos, so living in the great white north certainly hinders any future additions (Damn you, geography!), but it’ll likely happen someday (barring the missus protesting TOO much).

Do you have a Comic, Cartoon, or Sci-Fi tattoo that you think would make an interesting feature for “All Ink’d Up”? If so, send your pics to, visit us at the PoP! Forums, or comment on this very article.


Filed Under: All Ink'd UpFeatures

Who ARE these people!?

Lee Rodriguez is a co-founder and Editor-in-Chief of Panels On Pages. He is also a freelance graphic and web designer, action figure customizer, swell guy, and an awesome dad.

I'm even on Google+... Kind of.

Comments (7)

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  1. Ben Gilbert says:

    Wow that’s gorgeous

  2. Jason Knize says:

    How much inner turmoil was there with the idea of getting a ‘cross’ tattooed on you, someone who follows FSM?

  3. DeathByChickFlix says:

    Props to the artist!

  4. Justin says:

    @Knize – The cross IS covered in spaghetti…

  5. Robert Eddleman says:

    I hope Quesada sees this.

  6. Bart Klinckenberg says:

    I like your tattoo, first I thought it was my own.
    I putt the same tattoo a long time ago in black on my arm. It’s the first one on fan tattoo’s. A few years ago I let the tattoo artist colour the tattoo. That’s way I thought it was mine.
    Pretty cool , we have the same upperarm. ( only I have the daredevil in braille underneath.)
    Good luck.

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