The Punisher TV Show gets off to a blazing start. ( New on Netflix )
The Punisher TV Show takes on an entirely different approach from the one we have seen in other movies. While it was a whole lot better, It still had a couple of sloppy parts. The series featured an amazing cast with an albeit cliched storyline. Jon Bernthal was phenomenal in the role of Frank Castle, capturing the pain and emotion imbued in the character and all his thirst for blood. We are introduced in this series to the man behind the story. And the story behind the pain.
I have nothing but high praise for The Punisher TV Show. The starting was a perfect ode to the character’s roots as a haunted man. Frank Castle playing guitar with his daughter is one of the more somber and eerily painful moments of the series. The visuals are powerful with amazing emotion on show. The flashbacks were really creative as well, with Jon’s current physical state always reflected in those moments of reflection.
The show stays true to expectations by being dark and gritty. The blood and gore were surprisingly less than I expected but really impressive nonetheless. Marvel has once again shown that they are not afraid to make shows that are dark and grittier than your average superhero shows.
The Punisher TV Show features some really epic and in my opinion trailblazing scenes, for example, the scene Frank killed the last remaining member of the Cartel is particularly impressive with its use of sound and visual delays to portray Frank’s kill.
The various character arcs and backstories did not get as much attention as they deserved. Agent Madani barely had anything discussing her past. Billy Russo was just shown as a backstabbing friend with no real motive. Curt was always an arbiter and yet he played almost no role and had no reflection on his military career.
Even Lewis, the vet who went off the rails barely had any memories of his war experience shown. Marvel had a golden opportunity here to make the story count and they didn’t use it. Despite the fluidity of the characters, the excellent action, and great visuals, the characters were almost reduced to little more than individuals wielding guns and making statements of grandeur.
All great heroes need a great villain. Daredevil has Fisk, Luke Cage had Cottonmouth and Stryker and Jessica Jones had Kilgrave. Despite these precedents, this series seemed confused as to who was the main villain in the story. Neither of the two villains (Billy Russo and William Rawlins) had a very imposing or threatening presence. They did not seem like they had a chance of ever winning against the Punisher.
Personally, I think the only real thought the producers put into the characters was on how to best make their deaths cinematic spectacles. However, I have to also point out that Marvel brilliantly refused to kill off Billy. If you are a fan of the comics you will know that this sets it up for one of the Punisher’s most memorable villains (Jigsaw) to make his debut.
Unlike other Marvel series, the Punisher TV Show failed to discuss or make a coherent discussion on many social contemporary issues. This is taken particularly hard on The Punisher because it is perhaps the perfect and most appropriate platform for tackling any number of issues including but not limited to racism and gun control. Although I have to commend its take on the treatment veterans get on their return to the society.
The fact that Frank did not subscribe to his signature look as often as we all thought. In the past, this was enough for a movie to get panned (just ask Doff Lundgren). Fans today seem to be much more comfortable with the idea. This is really progressive and duly follows the trend of fans being comfortable with uncustomed superheroes.
The Punisher TV Show overall is an amazing series. It has an excellent storyline and amazing characterization. The backstories are disjointed and not properly tended to. The villains look like they have been put together haphazardly only for Frank to break them. This does not, however, take away from the amazing quality of this show. Perhaps you will have a difference of opinion from the one expressed here after you have seen it.
See Amazing Marvel Products @ EH Store
See Cool Art on Epic Heroes Insta Page