new york comic con 2014

Here’s Who Rosario Dawson’s Playing in Daredevil

Photo: Andreas Branch/; Marvel

Coming soon: Rosario Dawson is … Night Nurse! But also Claire Temple! Exciting, but confusing.

Back in June, we found out Dawson had been cast in the upcoming Netflix original series Daredevil, and speculation abounded about what Marvel Comics character she’d be playing. At a Saturday afternoon New York Comic Con panel, we got an answer (and got to see some footage): She’ll be playing a woman named Claire Temple. Now, that’s the name of a long-unused Marvel character who was a love interest of superhero Luke Cage (soon to be the star of his own Marvel/Netflix series).

But here’s the exciting wrinkle: Marvel television head honcho Jeph Loeb introduced a clip of Dawson by saying Claire is a “nurse who works at night.” That’s a delightful little dog whistle for comics nerds, because he was obviously referencing Night Nurse, a mantle held by many characters throughout Marvel’s publishing history. Short version: In the 1970s, Marvel launched a short-lived series called Night Nurse, all about nurses who worked in superhero-violence-plagued Manhattan. In the aughts, writer Brian Michael Bendis re-introduced the concept in the pages of his run on Daredevil, bringing us a busty nurse who secretly tends to bloodied heroes who can’t compromise their secret identities at hospitals.

And sure enough, in the clip aired at the panel, we saw Claire tending to a beaten-up and unmasked Daredevil (he fell into the Dumpster outside her apartment), who refuses to give his name or go to a hospital. He asks if she’s a doctor, and she says, “Something like that.” She nicknames him “Mike” for convenience and seems reluctantly charmed by him. The whole situation fits the Night Nurse archetype very comfortably. And although they didn’t make out in the clip, this is television, so they probably will eventually.