Voting for the first edition of the 'Comic Vine Battle of the Week' has come to an end! There are so many great matches to choose from and I'm stoked to use them down the road, but I thought Daredevil vs. Nightwing was an excellent way to kick things off. Both are hugely skilled, incredibly agile and use similar melee weapons. However, there are a few key differences between the two and that's what makes this battle so debatable. Over the week, 480+ Viners voted and plenty dove into extended debates on this battle between two heroes. The results are in and, while it was certainly close, Daredevil is the winner!
The Man without Fear earned 52% of the votes, while Dick Grayson took 42% and 5% thought it was a stalemate. I must say, I agree with the majority on this one. While there's no doubt this would be a superb melee to watch, I think Daredevil's superior displays of skill (far more frequent use of nerve strikes) and impressive reflexes (regularly cuts and deflects bullets) would let him edge out a victory. Yes, Grayson has a massive variety of gear on his side, but in a one-on-one fight, he's not exactly prone to using the more dangerous options (sonics, suit taser, etc) unless they're absolutely required. Sure, Grayson's obviously a superior detective and it is definitely possible he'd pick up on Matt's enhanced senses over time, but I think it's more probable Daredevil's technique would overcome before Grayson detects his weakness or can utilize the game changing resources he has. That said, the longer this fight goes on, the more it'll shift in Grayson's favor. It's by no means a stomp for either character and it's definitely a solid fight. A reasonable argument can be made for either hero, but in this case, the majority and I side with Daredevil!
Viner Argument of the Week
There were plenty of great arguments made for both characters and every week I'm going to highlight one in favor of the winning character. This week, I'm picking one by Comic Vine mod god_spawn. It's concise and manages to address quite a few key points.
"Daredevil. He's already shown better reflexes, close agility feats, better strength feats IMO, and DD's shown better skill feats. If you want to compare to top tier fighters so bad, Nightwing has been wrecked twice by Bane. He couldn't even touch Bruce when Bruce didn't want him to. And Nightwing has been given tough fights from Jason Todd. Whereas Daredevil has given Captain America good fights, Iron Fist good fights IIRC, and given Wolverine a good fight. People seem to think just because Dick was trained by Batman seems to make people believe that they are the cream of the crop when it comes to skilled fighting just because of that which is completely false. By that logic, Tim Drake would be in the top of DC and Nightwing isn't in there either. Nightwing does not always resort to his gear. Getting space from DD will be extremely difficult considering the radar sense will keep him one step ahead of Dick in terms of action and reaction. Just because Nightwing has something does not mean he will use it."
I think Daredevil wins, but what about some of the other Comic Vine staffers?
"I think this is Daredevil's fight to lose. He's got the ninja training, he's got the radar senses but much more importantly: he's got the raw experience. It's something that not a lot of people are going to realize, I feel, but Murdock's in his mid thirties while Nightwing is still a pup in his very early 20s. So while Nightwing may have his body-language reads, Daredevil has almost the same thing with his heightened senses, but ol' Hornhead's very simply put in far more hours and that's something that can be neither taught nor bought. Daredevil all the way."
"I'm going to have to go with Nightwing on this one, although it's an incredibly close match. My "Deadliest Warrior" style battle synopsis looks like this: Nightwing would kick things off with an early ranged attack to assess his opponent's abilities, but Daredevil's radar sense would give him an early edge, and Nightwing's initial attacks (likely with batarangs and bolos) would be easily rebuffed. Nightwing, being an ultra-keen observer (as seen in NIGHTWING #19 and #20), would notice Daredevil's incredible reflexes, but would also identify things that other opponents might not -- including Daredevil's blindness. At this point, things would go hand-to-hand (with Daredevil bringing out the billy club as needed, and Nightwing countering with escrima sticks), and we'd get a beautiful, acrobatic fight. Daredevil would grab the upper hand and deliver a sound beating to Nightwing, but during the confrontation, Nightwing would catch onto Daredevil's other heightened senses. In order to grab the win, he'd briefly stun Daredevil with electrified escrima sticks and then use a sonic batarang to push Daredevil into sensory overload. And, of course, he'd stick the landing."
And what does Kyle Higgins, the current writer of NIGHTWING, think about this fight?
"In my opinion, it all depends on how quick (if at all) Nightwing can figure out that Daredevil relies on heightened senses/radar. If he can deduce that, he's a few gadgets away from screwing with DD's navigation system enough to make it a fight. Of course, there's also the variable of "what kind of mood is Mark Waid in while he's writing this" (come on, is there ANYONE else you'd rather see write this fight?!?). I'm pretty sure he could come up with sixteen clever ways to take down either character without the other breaking a sweat."
Lastly, here's a hint for next week's battle. Check the homepage on Monday to see who's facing off next!
Gregg Katzman is a freelance writer for Comic Vine and IGN Entertainment. This is the part where he shamelessly plugs his Twitter page in hopes of getting a new follower or two.