‘The Punisher’ Season 1 Review


Ever since he showed in up Season 2 of Daredevil, fans have been waiting to see the Punisher get his own Netflix show! Said show has finally arrived and it delivers all of the brutal, bloody, gut-churning carnage we hoped it would. The series continues the journey of former Force Recon officer Frank Castle, known throughout New York City as “The Punisher” after exacting revenge on those responsible for the death of his family. Frank meets a mysterious man named “Micro” and uncovers a larger conspiracy that involves his military past and the CIA. The show is very violent and brutal, which is perfect for this Marvel character because anything less would take away from what makes the Punisher stand out amongst other heroes. The sound and lighting are similar to other Marvel shows by highlighting the main color of the hero, in this case, black. So many scenes feel cold, grim, and gloomy. Once again Jon Bernthal turns in a fantastic performance as Frank Castle. He is angry and hateful yet endearing and compassionate, capturing the duality of man with precision. He has great chemistry with every character he shares the screen with. His relationship with Micro is what we see the most and stands out as the brightest. Ebon Moss-Bachrach also turns in a great performance as David Lieberman/Micro. He’s just a man who wants to get back to his family and will do anything to make that happen. Ebon captures the sadness and disillusion of a man who is hunted for doing what’s right instead of looking the other way like most of the world would. Ben Barnes is also great as Billy Russo. He’s very mysterious yet totally likable in every way. Even though Billy is one of Frank’s best friends, viewers never really know where his allegiance is until the very end of the show. The show boasts a stellar supporting cast including Jason R. Moore as Curtis Hoyle, Amber Rose Revah as Dinah Madani, and Jaime Ray Newman as Sarah Lieberman. Their interaction with the main characters is what makes this show special and somewhat believable. Paul Schulze however, was lackluster as CIA Director of Covert Operations William Rawlins. As far as villains go he was quite forgettable. The main issue with this show is the same issue every Marvel Netflix show has and that’s its connection to the greater MCU. The show is great on its own but is hampered when viewers are supposed to believe that characters like the Avengers exist in the same world. The show mainly deals with events during the War in Afghanistan, but never brings up that Tony Stark was trapped over there, or that the CIA has been dealing with another rogue soldier, or even mentions the Sokovia Accords. Micro was mentioned in Season 2, Episode 7 of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. but doesn’t talk about working with S.H.I.E.L.D or Rising Tide. This show is even set apart from the other Marvel Netflix shows, with Karen Page being our only connective tissue. Therefore, viewers can’t tell if it takes place before or after The Defenders.  Also, the show could have used a little more of Frank suited up as the Punisher. I give The Punisher a Good 4.8/5. The show leaves very few questions open for future exploration, making it seem like a one and done deal. But I hope not because I would love to see Frank exact punishment on more of the criminal underworld and join the team in Season 2 of The Defenders.

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