“Quack! Quack! Quack!” Not traditionally how the start of a panel at Fan Expo Canada goes, but when you’re Elden Henson it’s to be expected. He’s put a lot of miles and a lot roles on his career in the almost 25 years since The Mighty Ducks, but he hasn’t been able to escape his legacy as the Duck’s enforcer Fulton Reed. “To this day I get Mighty Ducks, even doing the signings here most people want the Mighty Ducks picture signed,” Henson opined. But this was a day for Daredevil, and Henson was joined by co-star Charlie Cox, and Marvel Entertainment creative head Joe Quesada to talk about the popular Netflix series.
“There are the guys that walk past me on the street and yell ‘Daredevil!’ and then there are that others that yell ‘Matt Murdock!’ and I think that they must need a lawyer,” said Cox about his own notoriety. Both Cox and Henson were sporting off-season beards, which will likely have to come off soon given that production on The Defenders is coming up.
“I love Jessica Jones, and I thought Krysten [Ritter] did an extraordinary job with that part,” Cox said when asked about his fellow Hells’ Kitchen superhero. “That’s going to be an interesting relationship and I can see them kind of not getting along in that they’re two people who aren’t particularly friendly. I’m also looking forward to the Matt Murdock/Danny Rand stuff. I met Finn Jones the other day, so I’m looking forward to how their relationship works out on screen.”
Given that, it’s interesting to note that neither Cox nor Henson came into Daredevil as comic fans. “I wasn’t well versed in the comic book world but I’m well versed in the passion,” Henson said. “I relied very heavily on the people around me, so I was just asking a lot of questions to be honest. I try not to think about it too hard and go with what’s on the page and trust the people around me.”
Cox added that the fandom has grown on him. “I didn’t know anything about the character but in the two and bit years I’ve played the role I’ve become a bit of a fanboy and a couple of minutes ago I got a selfie with Stan Lee,” he said.
“I saw him in Dallas and he asked me why he wasn’t been on Daredevil,” Henson added. Cox pointed out that Lee has been on the show in a way as a portrait of a police officer in the 15th precinct. “I told him that and he didn’t seem satisfied,” Henson deadpanned.
Cox showed off his fanboy-ness when he asked what the biggest surprise for him has been so far making the show. “The one thing that made the hair on back of my neck stand up was at the end of episode seven or eight in season two when they describe the Hole,” he said. “I was waiting and hoping for that mystical element to become a part of the show, so to deal with this weird, never-ending hole in the middle of Manhattan you think, ‘Cool!’ I hope that Hole is explored more in season three.”
Before geeking out over the Hole though, Cox was concerned about the blackness of playing blind. He admitted that he perhaps went a little too method. “I had blacked out contacts made for the first 2 episodes and it was great for me, but terrible for everyone else because for the first three days I was a terribly annoying person,” he said. “I worked with a wonderful man named John and he’s been legally blind for 20 years, and we’d go out in the City of New York blindfolded and it was literally a case of the blind leading the blind. So whenever I have a question about making a cup of tea, or playing pool like in season two, I think it’s really important to get that stuff right because he’s one of the only superheroes that’s disabled, and it’s important to represent that struggle.”
There are struggles, and then there are struggles. “I’m a very lazy guy,” Henson explained. “I’m always pitching the idea of siting down in a scene or even laying down. I’m also a grumpy guy and this guy [pointing to Cox] never complains. He never complains, so I feel like I can’t complain.”
The duo were asked on a strictly hypothetical basis who from the expansive Marvel Cinematic Universe that they would like to have on Daredevil. “Based on Matt’s history, Black Widow [Scarlett Johasson] would be good,” Cox said to applause. “I’m a big Chris Pratt fan,” Henson added. “That doesn’t make any sense, but I would love to work with that dude. […] That’s kind of the cool thing about this Marvel world is that they’re all really good actors and people I want to work with.”
Attracting good actors is something Daredevil does good enough on its own, specifically Jon Bernthal who joined the show in season 2 as The Punisher. “Jon’s one of the best actors of our generation, he’s world class. I though he did such a great job and now he has his own show,” Cox said. “Steven DeKnight and I would have conversations in season where we’d say that Matt Murdock is one bad day away from being Frank Castle. So going into season two with Punisher, I thought ‘This was going to be interesting.’ He was going to be adversary for Matt, but he was also basically meeting himself. I was chained to a roof three nights in a row and that scene turned out great.”
“And he never complained,” Henson added.