MBTI: Daredevil & Elektra- ISTP

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The ultimate ISTP couple! Come one, come all! See this rare spectacle in truly miserable form!

While Daredevil has always been a favorite of mine and Elektra has been “Eh,” this seemed like too good of an opportunity to be missed.

The couple represents the two sides of the same Crafter coin that few examples in fiction get a chance to show at the same time- the angry side and the cold side. You can guess who is who.dd

There’s been some arguments as to what type Daredevil really is and guesses are everywhere- INFJ to ISTJ. Where these guesses come from I’m not entirely sure, but ISTJ is reasonable. What his dad taught him growing up having such a major impact on him is something of a Guardian trait to constantly refer back to how they know things to be to tell them how to deal with things now.

But Matt Murdock’s lifestyle is too much of a Perceiver to be anything else. Notice that ISTJ characters are usually very direct and to the point; a dual lifestyle isn’t fitting to their nature and is partially what makes them an ISTJ character- the Punisher and Dredd being examples of characters that live in a world full of crazy characters but deal with it all like an axe repeatedly hitting the same spot until their target falls.

There’s no finesse, no grace, just brutal marksmanship.

Which might help him at times.

Which might help him at times.

Now take Daredevil on the other hand. A lawyer by day, which many would consider to be a Perceiever job in the first place; arguing semantics of the law, getting murderers off based on technicalities- hey, it’s the law, right? And though Murdock isn’t that kind of lawyer, he’s still in a position that has him changing his tune depending on the nature of the crime his clients have committed.

But not only does he piss people off during the day with his “lawyering,” he’s also playing the vigilante role by night. His obsession with keeping his corner of New York safe is an interesting one seeing as how Spider-Man goes anywhere in New York, the X-Men regularly travel the world and Avengers have no problem going to alien dimensions.

DD usually sticks to decrepit allies.

DD usually sticks to decrepit alleys.

But not Matt, who’s content staying in Hell Kitchen and making sure his town is safe. This is similar to the ISTP way of thinking that as long as you leave theirs to them, we’ll all get along fine.

But it was the Bendis/Maleev run on Daredevil that had “Hornhead” getting into enraged arguments with superhero comrades that invoked ideas of the ISTP fits of anger they’re prone to. While I get tired of people shining lights on their own flaws as if they were a good thing, Daredevil’s biggest issues seem to stem from his violent tendencies.

Look at all that "blind" rage! Do you get it? Do you get the joke?

Look at all that “blind” rage! Do you get it? Do you get the joke?

After Elektra is killed, he tortures her killer with a game of Russian Roulette. After he’s been outed in the media as Daredevil, he sneaks out of his apartment where reporters are crowded, dressed as Daredevil, and unmasks himself thinking he just let them all see who he is as a sort of “Here I am!”

At one point, he even just became Daredevil for a year. No one even saw Matt Murdock.

Not to mention all the arguments he gets into with other heroes who he feels are judging him. Some characters just really bring the drama, don’t they? If an ISTP feels like his freedom is being infringed upon, they’ll take measures on par with a Rational albeit with a much more angst-ridden tone. Instead of just figuring their way out of a situation, they’ll often resort to trading blow for blow. Figuratively usually, until their opponent gives up.

But in Daredevil’s case, this is often literal.

Daredevil’s love life is also much more similar to the Crafter Artisan than it is any other type. Torrid and sometimes just depressing, Murdock’s love life may be the most famous in all of Marvel, save for Spider-Man and Mary Jane, and the Wolverine/Cyclops/Jean Grey triangle.

If they don’t get murdered themselves, they end up doing the murdering. Karen Page, Typhoid Mary, Black Widow…In Elektra’s case, she’s both a murderer and the murdered.

Look at those eyes...

Look at those eyes…

Raised a rich daddy’s girl, the way writer/creator Frank Miller has written her, she was pretty much born bad. But ISTPs aren’t born bad, though their natural diversions include things that others might find unsavory or maybe just downright stupid in some cases. The stereotypical examples always include skydiving and “X-treme sportz” but this could just be as simple as binge-drinking when everybody else is going for “having a good time.”

Elektra’s way of doing things exemplifies that side of the ISTP that just doesn’t care.

I mean, look at her! She just don't kurr!

I mean, look at her! She just don’t kurr!

The movie focused on an aspect of her character that just isn’t there in the comics, much like Hugh Jackman’s portrayal of Wolverine. Taking a character that is apart of many dramatic occurrences and events and making them aware of it creates unnecessary melodrama. I.E., screaming at the sky, constantly talking about how dark their life is, blah blah blah.

Elektra on the other hand, is quite a cold and remorseless character. She doesn’t kill out of a sense of revenge from being angry at the world. She kills because she can and she makes money off of it. The former is more important to her than the latter. The reason her and Murdock can’t be together is that she is a killer that refuses to stop while he can’t be with someone that regularly murders people.

Even one this HAWT.

Even one this HAWT.

If you’ve ever read a comic with Elektra even in it, she’s generally going to be doing less speaking than any character she’s around. She’s not quite a stoic though, as just about any dangerous activity she’s involved in will have her smiling about whatever violent crime she’s about to commit.

Living secretly, dangerously and according to their own principles, it’s no wonder an ISTP couple can’t make it- they’re too much alike and they’d just end up killing each other.

But the heart wants what the heart wants!

But the heart wants what the heart wants!

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10 Responses to “MBTI: Daredevil & Elektra- ISTP”

  1. FlowenRain Says:

    Is it possible that he might be an ISTJ who just utilizes his Radar sense to process the world in an ISTP like manner? I only say this because he clearly devotes his time to work within the boundaries of the established rule as much as possible. He has been noted saying to himself that “breaking the rules is breaking the law.”
    He goes as far as he does to prevent himself from killing if possible not only because it is wrong but mainly and primarily “because” it is against the law. A line he refuses to cross (even though he has). Wolverine, a classic ISTP, would kill you because, well “the dead don’t come back to hurt to nobody.” as he may put it. But by no means does he like to do it of course. Logan is driven by self principle not the external principle set by the world around him.
    In the comics the way Matt Murdock analyzes and elaborates on stimuli around him yet fearlessly dives right into danger look like the functions of Ti and Se at work. Mainly in part to his gifted radioactive senses.
    Again, I personally believe Daredevil is an ISTJ Si and Te user because he maintains the expectations and memory of his loving father and runs a meager yet well-intentioned law firm willing to assist the down trodden. His senses enabling him to discern the truth and provide help to those worth his aid, and bring criminals down in a legal manner.

    What are your thoughts author? Thank you for writing an article on one of my favorite heroes. Great blog.

    • Taylor Says:

      I like the way you’re thinking here and all the points are valid. But I do think one thing that can create a disagreement among characters in a world as expansive as Marvel is the scope of the battles the characters face. Same universe, different worlds. I can’t tell if Kingpin is ENTJ or ESTP for example. He seems ESTP compared to the globally dominant Magneto or Loki, but he’s only a human, albeit a genius business man so I can’t really take away from his intuition and possible vision just because he lives in a world with mutants and demigods.

      My point is that Wolverine could just as likely be the same type while having different morals and standards. The FBI agent in charge of the Murdock investigation when he was revealed to be Daredevil called Murdock the biggest hypocrite (and liar) in the world for not only being Daredevil and a lawyer, but for countersuing the paper that accused him at the same time. ISTPs have their own sense of right and wrong as you pointed out Wolverine does as well, and that being the case, it’s easier for me to see Murdock upholding the law by day and breaking the law at night to uphold justice as an ISTP over ISTJ.

      Wolverine, on the other hand, in my argument, is the same type as DD but from a totally different place. He’s a two hundred nearly unkillable mutant that’s being hunted by every villainous faction he used to work for and he can’t remember half of it. His life is a superhuman train wreck and compared to DD, a human with superhuman senses, they’re not going to look that same.

      I would never say that an ISTJ couldn’t see two different perspectives in this way, but it’s far less likely with their black and white mentality and need for a more strict sense of order. I do agree that Se would only be evident so much with a character that received supersenses in an accident, though mastering them may more likely be the training of a Se user.

      Also, I like the point you mention about Matt sticking to what his dad taught him, due to SJ’s emphasis on the past. But every type has a certain tie to the past as Keirsey points out and the difference between SJ and SP observations of it is fatalistic (SJ) and Cynical (SP). Fatalistic, of course, meaning that the future is unalterable due to the past while SPs are cynical of it. An argument could be made for DD to see the past as either of those due to his character frequently bringing it up.

      But ultimately, every time he digs into his past, something else tragic is brought up and Murdock fights to make sure he doesn’t make the same mistake as opposed to following in his “loser” father’s footsteps. This was especially prevalent in Joe Quesada’s “Father” storyline when he found out the old blind man he saved in the accident that gave him his powers turned out to be a pedophile who he possibly should have let die. Between that, his violent past and murderous girlfriends, I would argue that Matt is more of a cynic of the past which keeps him in line with the ISTP variant.

      Compare to the ISTJ Punisher who does everything based off of the past, or ISTJ Cyclops who learned everything he knows from Professor X, DD’s heroes either abandoned him or died, in both cases they were consistently shown to be majorly flawed which says much about the character of Matt.

      Great argument, I’d like to read a rebuttal. DD was my favorite growing up and honestly, I think much of it is because of the fact that he’ll always be underrated.

  2. FlowenRain Says:

    Thank you for your response, and I must say that you make very solid points yourself. I don’t have much to say in terms of defense mainly because I was interested in just understanding what alternative perspective you may have had in response to mine. I myself am an ISTP and I found him to be a hero that fascinates because of how his unique sensory abilities allows him to perceive the world and do extraordinary things along with it. Something to me that seemed Ti and Se in nature. He is a human character with a little something extra. I can’t necessarily relate with say Batman as much as I can with Daredevil because he in comparison is extremely rich and rigid. That along with being overly praised beyond necessity by fans. But I like him don’t get me wrong. There is just something about the underdog that appeals to me more though.

    Matt Murdock seems like the every day guy which bodes well with me. Grounded, practical, and works within the means that he can. Never does he ever back down no matter what. Going as far as to confront the hulk in one of his issues in the Visionaries collection even when the odds were clearly stacked against him. He confronts fear head on and I adore how that is a fundamental aspect of his character. I plan to do a lot more reading when I get the time to get an even better understanding of where you are coming from.

    Thank you for personally providing your own insight into the character and keep doing what you do.

    • Taylor Says:

      I don’t know how familiar you are with the Bendis run but it really is on par with Frank Miller’s stuff. Miller created the tone and personality to the world but Bendis’ dialogue and storylines are just *MUAH*. That being said, his way of having other superheroes actually confront Murdock to tell him he’s going too far was great all around. Murdock was able to tell them all off the way he should but without Luke Cage, Reed Richards, Peter Parker and Danny Rand looking like idiots in the process. I myself have always looked at him a low rent Batman- to DD’s credit, of course.

      I knew you had to be a “Sensor” of some sort because the majority of the time anyone debates a type, they want to turn the character into a intuitive. Always appreciate a different perspective, as well as comments. Keep reading!

      • FlowenRain Says:

        I most likely do need to read a few more issues of the run by Bendis. I’m still currently reading work by Miller which has been great thus far. I still have a lot to get through but I will eventually get through it. I’m just taking my sweet time to truly enjoy these classic stories that built the foundation around the character.

        And yeah, I am a Sensor alright. What is your type?

        The thought has never really crossed my mind to consider Matt as an Intuitive. The fact that he is a sensor is as a clear as day. Actually I believe you mentioned Cyclops in your very first response to me and that is funny because I always saw him and Daredevil to virtually be the same character. The only discernible difference to me was that one manages a team and another manages a law firm. They even look surprisingly similar in appearance in certain instances.

        If I may ask in your own opinion how different are these two as characters and heroes specifically? In particular the way they handle situations, people, and themselves in regards to typing of course. Elaborate with even more specific examples if you can or need to. That being as you typed Cyclops is an ISTJ and Daredevil as an ISTP. Call upon any and all comic book history between the two that you wish. I am genuinely interested, thank you.

        • Taylor Says:

          I would really say it comes down between discipline for Cyclops and drive for Daredevil. These two words could differentiate between their types of ISTJ and ISTP as well. While Cyclops has been raised from childhood by his father figure, Xavier, Daredevil has been ultimately parentless for his life and his drive is what keeps him going. When it comes to his firm, his love life, and his vigilantism, Daredevil’s main purpose behind what he does comes from his drive to keep the same things that happened to him from happening to someone else.

          Cyclops’ role as leader of the X-Men was developed by Professor X’s guidance and teachings that humans and mutants can live together but there need to be peaceful mediators willing to fight for both species. It’s not as though he doesn’t have a mind of his own but it’s Xavier’s will that’s been passed down to him and he fights like crazy to keep it alive. Even the more recent issues of the X books has Cyclops, a wanted fugitive, fighting for the survival of mutants. Keep in mind this is after many see it as Cyclops having killed Professor X after being possessed by the Phoenix force. Many would have done what they could to state their case and their innocence but Cyclops is a world-class dick and wants to see his “dad’s” dream go on, even if he hasn’t.

          ISTPs, being perceivers, are more principle driven like Daredevil is, fighting for his own small corner of the city, while ISTJs become to embody whatever message they’ve learned that gives them purpose. Like a “Judger,” Cyclops follows the rules even after the rule giver is dead and he’s being hunted down for it. Let’s also bring up the ISTP’s torrid love life, as Murdock’s relationships are. If they don’t want to marry him, they’re trying to kill him. ISTPs are known for their sexual proclivities while ISTJ Cyclops had been with Jean Grey for YEARS until the writers wanted to shake things around.

          ENTP, by the way.

          • FlowenRain Says:

            Again, thank you for your enlightening response.
            I’m beginning to properly see the direction you have taken in your typing stance based on the additional evidence you provided. The comparison you gave between Scott and Matt was wonderful as well. I was able to finally finish the Frank Miller Visionary Collection and have quickly transitioned into more of the work by Bendis. The situations he faces in more recent work reveal much more than I had previously perceived about Matt and his endeavors as Daredevil. You were right, it is quite intriguing. ISTP seems more than likely now than ever before. Bendis gave him this distinct attitude I would say. It is just so weird at times since ISTPs or possibly just SPs for that matter disregard rules, yet this a character who passionately dedicates himself to the law. He believes in the judicial justice system even though admittedly he understands it is not perfect all of the time, but most. It can be quite difficult to wrap my head around but I believe it is possible by all means. His bending or disregard of the rules is displayed through his vigilante work just as you had stated long before, making it all the more believable.

            • Taylor Says:

              Yeah, you can always see the rigidness of an ISTJ over the subtle stubbornness of the ISTP. SJs walk all over you to keep the rules in place while SPs will walk all over you because you told them not to. They’re traits that have their good and bad traits to them but it is what it is. I would agree also that Bendis allowed the character to breathe a little more too, opening up his personality a bit.

  3. Taylor, you are starting to slightly aggravate me, but only through humbling me. I consistently think I’m excellent at typing characters, then you give a type I think is WAY off. Then, I read your post, and realize you are absolutely right!
    (I hope you see the “aggravating” was just a joke.)

    Reading your posts has made me much better at typing. After reading your post comparing the comics’ Batman to the Nolan films’ Batman, I now cannot see Bruce Wayne as ANYTHING BUT ISTJ. You can see it appear in everything he says, even the subtle things – from the Dark Knight: “Criminals aren’t complicated, Alfred.” Any intuitive would probably think of it as much more complicated, even if it detracts from their ability to act on it!
    And now, after reading this post, Daredevil is undoubtedly ISTP. It’s somewhat shocking to think of an ISTP as a lawyer, but that’s in part why the character is interesting.
    Batman and Daredevil are quite similar, but there are a few ways they definitely differ that define the characters, and clearly show a distinction between ISTP and ISTJ. Heck, even in their fighting styles it is apparent – Batman is more hard-hitting, while Daredevil is more acrobatic and flashy.

    I think the bias you mentioned regarding wanting to type heroes as intuitives is all too true. There is an unfortunate tendency to think of “smart” or “clever” superheroes as intuitives, and as an intuitive (INFJ), I can say that is crap. Seeing Batman or Daredevil remain so aware of their environment and manipulate it to their advantage without hesitation… I am blown away.
    I think if an INFJ was in that action hero role, he would be trying to persuade a criminal to leave their life of crime, while the criminal’s partner comes up behind him with a glass bottle to the noggen…

    • Taylor Says:

      Yeah the big difference between N and S characters seems to be something that can mostly be summed up with Sensor characters dealing with a defective environment and by solving those issues, can work out their personal ones easily. Intuitive characters have to get over their own personal issues THEN they can deal with their environment with almost no problem.

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