Melvin Potter is a brilliant, but mentally impaired designer who was coerced into working for Wilson Fisk. Potter later created Daredevil's Suit for Daredevil when he was asked to make a suit that could protect him from injury, in exchange for keeping Betsy Beatty safe. When Fisk was sent to jail, Potter retired from building suits for criminals and focused his efforts on Beatty and protecting Daredevil and Elektra as they continued to fight evil.
Working for Wilson Fisk
Protection for Leland Owlsley
- "That'll be all Mr. Potter."
"Okay, need anything else, Mr. Fisk, sir?"
"Not today, Mr. Potter."
- ―Wilson Fisk and Melvin Potter
A talented designer, blacksmith and armorer despite being mentally impaired, Potter was forcibly recruited by Wilson Fisk to design and build armor and protective suits for him. When Potter refused, Fisk warned him that he intended to hurt his friend and caregiver Betsy if Potter did not do as instructed. Fisk also made Potter build an armored suit and waistcoat for Leland Owlsley, after he was attacked by a masked man. Owlsley made a comment to Fisk calling Potter half an idiot, but Fisk assured him that it was the other half that mattered.
Working with Daredevil
Protecting Fisk's Secrets
When the man in the mask discovered that Potter was the person who had been providing the body armor for Wilson Fisk, he tracked down his warehouse and looked at Potter's designs. Potter arrived shortly after and prepared to continue his work on a new design, however he quickly discovered the intruder. Potter panicked at the break in, knowing that Fisk had ordered that no one enter Melvin Potter's Workshop without Fisk's permission, and he was horrified when the man began asking about how exactly he came to work for Fisk's organisation.
Potter told the intruder that he should not be there before attacking the masked man, revealing his combat skills and brute strength. Potter slammed the man's head hard against his work top while attempting to kill him with his strength, all the while telling him over and over that he should not be there. He began using items around his shop, such as chains and saw blades which he threw, to fight off the intruder. The man continued to fight back however and managed to get Potter in a choke hold until Potter was able to free himself and continue fighting the invader for as long as he could.
Eventually Potter was defeated by the masked man and broke down crying, believing Betsy Beatty's life to now be in danger as Wilson Fisk would find out he broke his one rule that no one is allowed in the workshop. Much to his surprise however, the masked man comforted Potter and assured him he did not work for Fisk and was planning on bringing down his reign of terror. The man told Potter that if he made an armored suit for him, he would ensure that Fisk never harmed him or Betsy ever again. When Potter asked the man what kind of suit he required, the man told him he wanted a symbol.
Delivering the Red Suit
- "I haven't had enough time to get all of it through the process, black parts will give the most protection, red might deflect a knife depending on the angle, might not."
"It'll do just fine, thank you Melvin."
- ―Melvin Potter and Daredevil
Potter did as instructed and made a new suit designed around devil imagery and a specially designed Billy Club to the masked man's specifications. When the masked man came to collect the suit, Potter explained the design, noting which areas of the new armor were more protective against bullets and knives. The masked man later used it to fight Wilson Fisk, finally defeating him and putting him inside Ryker's Island.
After Daredevil was shot in the head by the Punisher, he brought his severely damaged helmet to Potter's workshop, hoping that Potter could fix it. As Potter examined the damage, he guessed that the shot was not intended to kill him, but was carefully placed as a warning shot. He then told Daredevil that the best thing to do would be to make an entirely new helmet, which would take him a few days. Since Daredevil was anxious to get back on the streets that night, Potter also agreed to patch up the damaged helmet as best he could. When Potter asked him if he was ready to go out again, Daredevil sarcastically asked if he looked ready.
Daredevil arrived at Potter's workshop days later, earlier than Potter expected him. He explained that he needed the suit so that he could go after the Punisher. Although Potter complained that he didn't like to be rushed, he eagerly showed Daredevil the new fortified carbon tube helmet, which he claimed was very close to indestructible. Although Daredevil had not asked him to, Potter was inspired to also make him reinforced alloy gloves. Potter also showed Daredevil his own protective armor, which he was wearing under his clothes. He remarked that he wanted to stay strong for Betsy Beatty.
Days later, Daredevil brought Elektra Natchios to Potter's workshop, asking him if he could give her some body armor. Potter reluctantly lent her something he had made to keep Betsy Beatty safe. Daredevil and Elektra promised to return it to him without a scratch. In addition, Potter gave Daredevil a billy club of his own design, with a steel fiber composite cable, which he declared was near indestructible. Daredevil was at a loss for words, but Potter assured him that he made it for him because he knew he was the one keeping Hell's Kitchen safe.
Despite being mentally troubled, Potter is extremely skilled mechanically and as an engineer, catching the eye of Wilson Fisk and Daredevil for manufacturing a material that was both light and bulletproof. He is somewhat artistic in this regard, creating a suit for Daredevil that is reminiscent to the look of the Devil, to be a symbol for his enemies, and advance his weapons further such as adding a grapple mechanic for his billy club. Though sometimes violent, as when he attacked the masked man in his workshop (although this was in self-defence at the time because he believed him to be one of Fisk's men), Potter is also highly emotional, breaking down in tears when he was overpowered. He carries a wide-eyed, almost childlike enthusiasm to his creations when revealing them to Daredevil. Potter is also smart enough to take advantage of an opportunity that comes his way such as assisting the masked man to protect him in the field so he would protect Betsy Beatty.
- Expert Combatant: Potter is very proficient in melee, close quarter and unarmed combat. He was able to hold his own in a one on one fight with an injured Daredevil, using tools inside his workshop as improvised weapons, and came close to beating him. He was also strong enough to effortlessly lift Daredevil off the ground by the face, before slamming him into the ground.
- Expert Engineer: Potter is highly skilled in designing all kinds of body armor and weaponry. He was able to invent a advanced synthetic fabric that is extremely durable yet very light, like cloth, and also endowed it with bullet proof and knife resistant properties. He kept improving his designs on Daredevil's Suit, reinforcing it with new carbon nanotube base alloy to make it near indestructible.
- Wilson Fisk's Suit
- Leland Owlsley's Suit (2015)
- Daredevil's Suit (2015) - protective body armor worn by Matt Murdock aka Daredevil.
- Daredevil's Billy Club (2015)
- Melvin Potter's Suit (2015)
- Daredevil's Billy Club upgrade (2015) - a multi-purpose cane with different modes, such as two short sticks or a larger staff.
- Elektra Natchios's Suit (2015)
- Betsy Beatty - Caregiver
- Leland Owlsley † - Customer
- James Wesley †
- Turk Barrett
- Matt Murdock/Daredevil - Enemy turned Customer
- Elektra † - Customer
- Wilson Fisk - Employer turned Enemy
In chronological order:
- In the comics, Melvin Potter is known as Gladiator and one of Daredevil's first enemies, eventually becoming an ally of Daredevil. The symbol that Potter uses on his costume in the comics can be seen in his workshop and on his personal body armor.