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In the Netflix hit TV show, Dare Devil, Matthew Murdock, a superhero vigilante by night and lawyer who is blind during the day, fights crime and protects the citizens of Hells Kitchen. Although Murdock holds a cane and wears dark glasses which are things usually associated with the blind, he does not need them at all. They are merely apart of his disguise.
Murdoc was in an accident as a child and chemicals were spilled into his eyes leaving him blind while super enhancing his other senses. Murdoc can often be seen throwing his cane into the trash bin when changing into Dare Devil. This representation of disability is just a shield Murdoc can hide behind during the day to protect his identity.
Murdoc may be blind but Dare Devil does not need his sight, his superhuman senses allow him to travel through the physical world freely. His superpowers cancel out everything the able-bodied fear about blindness. Blindness poses no social problems for Murdoc, he is able to feel the ink off a page, successfully flirt with women, run a law practice of his own and is completely independent.
Take that *BLAMO*
Mathew's representation of disability is not accurate, he fails to represent challenges members of the blind community face. His powers have essentially altered his blindness into something that doesn't even factor into his daily life and as his secret life of a superhero.
Everyone in the Tv series adores Mathew and admires all that he has accomplished "despite him being blind." In Disability theory, this shows how society views PWD; it is as though people are shocked Murdoc is able to accomplish anything because of his disability.
It's sad that this is one of the most popular shows that represents disability because it does it in such a terrible way. For Murdoc blindness is an unnecessary quality that barely changes his character. If he were sighted he would not be much different, likely less interesting and more relatable to able-bodied viewers. If the show were to represent disability more like The Diving Bells and the Butterfly it would be taken more seriously by the disabled community and give more insight.
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