Margaret Grace (Sister Maggie)

sistermaggiefilmBack to Daredevil, let’s see together who’s new in episode three, New York’s Finest. At the beginning of the episode, poor Daredevil received quite a beating from Frank Castle, and awakes on a roof, chained to a chimney…and he has a weird vision of a nun nursing him and calling him “Mattie” before fully regaining conscience. So, why should a blind superhero dream about a caring nun? Simple answer: it’s because she is his mother, Sister Maggie, portrayed by a yet unnamed actress (the same woman Battlin’ Jack calls on the phone before being killed). She only appears in this dream sequence, so at least we know she exists in the MCU as well, and that she abandoned her little boy just as in the comics…hopefully, the character will be further explored in future seasons. She also appeared in the first Daredevil movie, in the extended cut: portrayed by Vivian Palermo Winther, she visited her son at the hospital after he became blind. Now, let’s see together who this nun originally is…and how comes she’s the mother of the devil.

Margaret “Maggie” Grace was born in New York City, a Catholic girl from a poor family. When she was still very young she met Jonathan Murdock, a young boy she fell in love with. Despite being little more than kids, and quite poor (the only money they had came from Jonathan’s wins in boxing matches), Maggie and her man got married, and moved into a little house in Hell’s Kitchen, living on little more than their love only. Things between them seemed to be perfect, despite the many difficulties they faced, and their joy reached its maximum when Maggie found out she was pregnant with their first child. When the baby was born, the Murdocks named him Matthew, the living testimony of their love…but soon something became odd with Maggie. She became more and more anxious about the baby’s safety, to the point that she constantly feared he was in danger. At a certain point, she even believed that her own husband, Jonathan, was the one putting Matt in danger, or even trying to kill him on purpose. When sistermaggiecomics1she realised she was wrong, and that Jonathan was the gentle and kind man she had always loved, she started blaming herself, loathing her being such a bad mother for the child; she was sure she would have ended up killing him with her sloppiness, and she hated herself for it. These were, of course, the steps of a deep post-partum depression, and Jonathan just couldn’t see it, not in time. At last, Maggie turned all her anxiety and her repressed hatred to Matt: in her delusion, she started believing the newborn wanted to purposefully put enmity between her and her husband, to keep them apart and to receive all the attentions for himself. Wanting to put an end to this “menace”, Maggie physically assaulted the baby, coming close to killing him. Luckily enough, she came to her senses before committing something irreparable, and she ran from home, wanting to prevent herself from hurting Matt or even Jonathan. She never came back.

Wandering in the streets, with no direction nor purpose, Maggie was found by a priest, who gave her shelter in his church. The priest talked to the woman thoroughly, and understood what she was suffering from: he helped her recover, with both spiritual and human help, and the intervention of some professionals cooperating with his parrish. At the end of the treatment, Maggie was a woman reborn. During her time with the priest, Maggie had found more than her true self and her sanity: she had found God, and she had decided to dedicate her entire life to Him. She became a nun, and she adopted the name of Sister Margaret, preferring her full name to her diminutive, which belonged to her old life…but eventually, everbody came to know her as Sister Maggie nevertheless: her name, like her past, just sticked to her. She learnt that her husband had been killed some time after it had happened, and she followed her son from afar, still afraid to be a part of his life, but ready to intervene if the situation required. Maggie spent her time with her sisters, praying and taking care of the poor ones, and she also grew prouder and prouder of Matt, who had become a fine lawyer, helping desperate and needing sistermaggiecomics2people just as the good man she had always hoped him to become. Maggie also learnt that Matt had indeed become blind, but that he had gained other amazing abilities that he had used to become the superhero Daredevil. When Daredevil entered an all-out war with his most dangerous enemy, The Kingpin, he barely escaped with his life after a direct confrontation with him: this was finally the time Sister Maggie decided to take an active role in her son’s life, and she took her son from the streets, all battered-up, and she brought him to the Clinton Mission Shelter, where she lived. She nursed him back to health, and helped him struggling with his doubts and inner demons…and the man clearly sensed the strong affection the woman had for him, something that also one of his friends, Spider-Man, noticed. Matt even asked the nun if she was his mother, but Maggie calmly denied it with a smile: she still wasn’t ready to come back in her son’s life. Matt, thanks to his heightened senses, knew she was lying, but didn’t know why…but he let it go: they would have had time to know each other and make up for lost time.

Maggie Grace Murdock was once a broken woman, deeply scarred by a psychic disease that brought her to be paranoid, anxious and violent: now she is a reborn woman, a nun who has met God and her true self, and who’s now ready to spend her whole life for the people in need. Sister Maggie is always ready to help the poor and the sick ones, and she’s learnt the basics of first aid in order to be ready for any kind of emergency her shelter can face. Just as strong as she is now serene, Maggie is a beacon of light and hope for the ones who live in darkness and hopelessness, truly the face of God even in a place like Hell’s Kitchen.

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  1. […] Margaret Grace (Sister Maggie) […]

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