Netflix’s newest Marvel series The Punisher is hands down the best series so far. Frank Castle is back and itching for some cold blooded revenge.
Taking place about a year after the events of Daredevil Season 2, The Punisher picks up with Frank keeping a low profile. He wakes up, goes to work, comes home. After avenging his family this is the monotonous life he has grown accustomed to. Its not until certain events take place that thrust him into the hellish underbelly of New York City once again.
Turns out the people responsible for his family’s murder haven’t all been taken care of after all. Castle is contacted by a hacker (soon to be side kick) that goes by the name of “Micro” (A.K.A. David Leiberman). Together the two uncover a conspiracy that climbs some of the highest branches of our government. During his deployment, Frank Castle was part of an anti-terrorist group that was responsible for kidnapping high profile targets, interrogating, and executing them. No questions asked.
Turns out the group was off the books and everything they had been doing was highly illegal (that’s the short version, without divulging too much spoilers). Leiberman had come into possession of a video of one of the executions that took place. Said video involved an American citizen that was tortured and executed. In an attempt to shine a light of the corrupt politics within our military, Leiberman sends the video to the wrong people and in turn is then killed, or so they think. For the whole story, you’re just going to need to watch the show yourself.
Part of what makes this series so good is the character development. Frank Castle, as brutal as he may be, has a human side and seeing that come out around certain people makes him one compelling character. In Daredevil we saw this hard, take no shit vigilante that shoots first and asks questions later. In The Punisher we still get that badass, but we also get to see his human side take a stronger hold on him.
It’s worth mentioning that Jon Bernthal was born to play this role. He is incredible as The Punisher. It’s almost like a Dr. Jekyl Mr. Hyde relationship within Frank Castle. He’s human, he does have feelings, but he’s been through and seen some serious shit and that means that sometimes his darker side comes out.
The supporting cast helps make this series such a success as well. Characters like Micro, Agents Madani and Stein, Billy Russo, and Lewis Wilson (to name a few) help make this show what it is. They’re all well developed, flawed individuals themselves and that in turn adds to the mastery that is The Punisher.
The Punisher also does something that few hero movies or shows have yet to do thus far. They deliver some truly good villains. Billy Russo and Lewis get the screen time they deserve and the backstory needed to make us, as viewers, empathize with their cause. Not to mention the ending of the series absolutely sets up Russo to come back as Jigsaw!!
The Punisher touches on the affects of war on our soldiers. It brings to light just how hard some of our troops have it when they come home. The first villain in the show, Lewis Wilson, is a victim of PTSD. Needless to say he goes off the deep end and because of his instability, people die. Billy Russo, Frank’s best friend is probably one of the best villains I’ve seen. He gets the screen time he deserves and delivers one hell of a performance. What is interesting with his character is the fact that he just chose the wrong side at the wrong time. Maybe if he had known Frank was still alive he might have changed, but by the time he does, its too late.
Between an incredible cast, a well thought out story, and some fantastic action sequences, The Punisher delivers one hell of a ride. I would be fine if Netflix and Marvel put all their efforts into continuing this series because it is by far the best we’ve seen so far. The Punisher is a must watch, binge-worthy series that can’t return fast enough.