Who Is Leland In 'Daredevil' Comics History? He's A Menacing Figure On The Page, Not So Much On The Show
This isn't Ben Affleck's Daredevil for sure. Netflix and Marvel Television's Daredevil series is definitely dark and brooding like the original film but thankfully, the show is much better than the film that preceded it all. The quality is thanks to the cast, the show's great Marvel Easter eggs, and the hints at upcoming storylines we're sure to see in future seasons. As you continue your marathon of the series (which you will undoubtedly finish before the end of the weekend if you're anything like me), you'll come across some fascinating side villains that all lead back to the big bad Wilson Fisk (aka Kingpin, aka one of the biggest baddest villains of the Daredevil franchise). One of those side villains is Leland, but while the series portrays him as a slightly racist white collar criminal who works with the Japanese drug world, the Daredevil comics villain Leland is actually a pretty formidable baddie.
Leland Owlsley's super villain alter-ego is The Owl (makes sense) and he becomes a recurring baddie in the Marvel universe, mostly against Daredevil but also against Spider-Man and other heroes. Leland's comic book origins begin with him being a successful investor who is dubbed as "The Owl Of Wall Street," thanks to being so wise about the financial markets. Unfortunately evidence arises that he has committed tax evasion along with other white collar crimes, but instead of trying to fix his ways or even fight the charges piling up against him, he turns to a life of crime while hiding out from the authorities. And thus The Owl is born.
Aside from attempting to be a crime boss, The Owl actually does have some semi-special abilities. In the comics, The Owl creates a serum that allows him to glide for short distances, giving him the image of being able to fly. This ability can be enhanced when in certain circumstances, for example if he glides with some tailwind, his distance for the flight increases quite a bit. He also changes his appearance to look more like his namesake. But let's be honest, his prowess for the crime world is much more impressive than his fake flying ability.
Now I sincerely doubt Leland Owlsley on Netflix's Daredevil will become his full Owl-self anytime soon, but it is interesting to see the man already working in the criminal underworld as Fisk's moneyman. And honestly, I'm actually excited to see what makes him flip the switch into wanting to full transform into The Owl on the series. Will Daredevil himself be the catalyst or are we in for some fascinating departures in the series to give us the answer?
Images: Netflix (screenshot) (2)