Through the first two seasons of Marvel’s Daredevil, plus The Defenders mini-series, we’ve seen ol’ Hornhead square off with The Kingpin, The Hand, and Elektra. So, of Daredevil’s biggest villains, that leaves only Bullseye unexplored. The assumption has long been that he would show up during the show’s third season, and now – according to The Hashtag Show – he will.
Actor Wilson Bethel, cast in November as an FBI agent, will be bringing the legendary assassin to life. Information about Bethel’s character was withheld by Marvel TV at the time of the release and know we can see why. Comic fans know Bullseye as either “Lester” or “Benjamin Pointdexter”, but there is actually an alternate version of Bullseye that Marvel TV could be drawing on for inspiration here. During his Punisher MAX run, creator Jason Aaron reimagined Bullseye as Sheldon Pendergrass, a highly-skilled marksman and deadly hand-to-hand combatant, so perhaps “STEVE” will be Sheldon in Season 3. As with all Marvel TV shows, we know we won’t be getting a direct adaptation of this or any character, but here’s to hoping we’ll see the best bits of Bullseye’s brand of crazy when the series airs later this year!
While this reported hasn’t been confirmed yet, and may still turn out to be false, it doesn’t hurt to do a quick background on the character in any case.
Possible spoilers to follow for past and future Marvel/Netflix shows…
When we last saw Daredevil, at the end of The Defenders, he was being nursed to health by some nuns, one of which – Maggie – we can assume is Murdoch’s mother. This leans heavily into the reports that the Netflix series would be, at least in part, adapting the classic “Born Again” storyline from the comics.
Written by Frank Miller (with art from David Mazzucchelli), it tells the story of a strung out Karen Page giving up the true identity of Daredevil for drugs, and that news making its way back to Wilson Fisk. And while we don’t predict that the show will turn Karen into a heroin-addicted porn star like Miller did, they haven’t hidden the fact that Page has a dark past she’s not sharing with Matt and Foggy, and it’s possible that could come back into play here.
As Kingpin systematically dismantle’s Murdoch, costing him his apartment, job, reputation, finally almost taking his life, Matt is saved by some nuns, one of which – you guessed it – turns out to be his mother. Does this guy have a complicated relationship with the church or what? In turn, Matt nurses Karen through her withdrawal while the pair lay low. In the books, Fisk uses psychopath Nuke to attack Hell’s Kitchen and draw out his nemesis. Within Marvel’s Netflix continuity, however, Nuke is already dead, having appeared in each of the first two seasons of Jessica Jones, and sacrificing himself to save Trish Walker during his season two redemption arc. This fact opens the door for the Kingpin to hire somebody else to draw out Murdoch, perhaps Bullseye?
Who is Bullseye?
For those of you unfamiliar with the character, Bullseye is an assassin who has a skill set not totally unlike Hawkeye of The Avengers. Except that Bullseye is a psychopath. First appearing in Daredevil #131 (1976), created by Marv Wolfman and John Romita, Sr., Bullseye has been one of Marvel’s most notorious “guns for hire” for the last four decades. Having worked for the Kingpin previously, Bullseye’s reputation took a hit as he repeatedly went after ‘The Man Without Fear’ and was thwarted time and time again. And though he never succeeded in killing Murdoch (obviously), he is the man responsible for the deaths of both Elektra and Karen Page, plus attempts on several of DD’s other love interests, even going so far as to kidnap Black Widow at one point.
Aside from the Devil, Bullseye has squared off against The Punisher on multiple occasions, as well as heroes like Captain America, Deadpool, Moon Knight and the X-Men. He was also part of villain teams The Thunderbolts and the Dark Avengers, so he’s got no lack of credentials. But first and foremost, he is a Daredevil villain.
His history prior to his life as an assassin is up for debate, as several origins exist, most of which are assumed untrue, giving him a bit of mystery, not unlike The Joker in that regard. What is commonly accepted though is that his father was an abusive A-hole, and he grew up lacking the strong moral authority figure he clearly needed.
Wilson Bethel is at the center of this casting rumor. Having made a name for himself on television, Bethel has starred in shows Hart of Dixie (below) and The Young and the Restless, though his role in Generation Kill was likely more helpful prep for Marvel’s Daredevil than those others.
His character is currently listed as “FBI Agent” and IMDb shows him appearing in at least four episodes, but that doesn’t mean a whole lot one way or another. The character was described as “an awkward FBI agent that needed the structure of the bureau to keep the darkness inside him subdued.”
That sure sounds like it could be Bullseye, but again, this is all still in rumor territory. And even if it turns out Bethel doesn’t turn out to be the sadistic assassin, we won’t be surprised if someone else is. Just seems the natural next step to introduce the character, and likely bring out Karen’s dark past.
Daredevil‘s third season doesn’t yet have a release date, but it is expected to drop later this year.
Images: Marvel Comics, Netflix, The CW
Source: The Hash Tag Show