'Marvel's The Punisher': Five Things To Look Forward To

With the highly-coveted release of the upcoming Netflix spin-off, Marvel's The Punisher, just a week away, the violent exploits of Jon Bernthal's Frank Castle aim to rock the month of November like nothing else. With trailers for the series giving us our first taste of the chaos to unfold in the ex-Marine's vicious revenge plot on the mobsters who killed his family, the next collaboration to come out of Marvel and Netflix looks to be one of the best yet. With the character already making the second season of Marvel's Daredevil a compelling chapter of dueling ideologies and violent consequences, the solo journey of Frank Castle on his own turf could make for a gripping tale of conspiracy and unrelenting gunplay. Gearing up for the spin-off's cryptic release, here are five essential things to look forward to in Netflix's latest comic-book endeavor.

Frank Castle Comes Home: After a season-long tirade in Hell's Kitchen in the second season of Marvel's Daredevil, which found Frank Castle's revenge plot bleeding into the affairs of Matt Murdock, the ex-Marine-turned-vigilante seems to have his sights clear of any masked heroes in The Punisher. Delving into Castle's own past, from his days as a loyal soldier to his dark turn as a violent hitman, The Punisher aims to dissect the morally-ambiguous killer we saw in Daredevil. Moving beyond his antagonism towards Murdock and his values of right and wrong, the series targets Castle's more personal vendettas, not only with the men who killed his family, but also the corrupt figures of his past that seek to make his life a living hell.  

A Page Out of Another Chapter: Of course, while Castle might be leaving behind Matt Murdock and the Devil of Hell's Kitchen, the unlikely allies he made in season two of Daredevil are far from dead. One in particular, working as the glue between Daredevil and Castle's own series, is Deborah Ann Woll's Karen Page. With Woll reprising her role after appearing in not only Daredevil, but The Defenders as well, the arc of Karen Page seems to now be molding around that of Castle's. With the two sharing their own set of secrets in Daredevil, Page looks to be one of the few confidants left in Castle's reach. While she might still question his methods, and the lengths he goes to enact revenge, the connection between Page and Castle could promise some interesting things for both characters.

A Grisly Puzzle of Conspiracy: At the heart of Netflix's Punisher series, besides the evolution of its titular hitman, is a tale of conspiracy. With the exploits of Frank Castle and the enemies of his past coming back to haunt him as he grows to infamy in New York City, a conspiracy that extends beyond just Castle and his family seeks to break apart everything he once knew. While much of this conspiracy remains under wraps until Friday, it's clear that everyone whose associated with Castle -- including Ben Barnes' Billy Russo -- could have a role in this boiling plot to take down the Punisher.  

Revenge Best Served Bloody: With old enemies and allies, and one mysterious conspiracy afoot, there of course comes a bit of violence here and there. With Frank Castle involved, however, the bloodshed is multiplied ten-fold, especially when it comes to taking revenge and protecting the ones he cares for the most. While the second season of Daredevil found Castle laying waste to Irish mobsters and taking a few punches at a chained-up Matt Murdock, the solo series for the hitman is sure to bring plenty more pain than that. Detailing the evolution from his disciplined warfare as a Marine to his unrelenting hunt for the monsters who poked the bear, The Punisher is without a doubt going to be one of the more dark and violent series to come from Marvel.

The Hidden Signs of a Hero: While much of The Punisher will surely be filled with Jon Bernthal kicking ass and cutting his way down to the source of the conspiracy he's found himself at the center of, one of the more exciting elements that I hope the series explores is Frank Castle's role as an anti-hero. A man driven to mass murder by his vengeance, but still strict in his moral code, Castle's middle-ground between hero and villain remains a fascinating tangent of the Netflix-Marvel universe. While Daredevil surely breaks his Catholic ideals to defend Hell's Kitchen in his own series, the dynamics of Frank Castle and his drive to defend his home through acts of violence that paint him in an entirely different light than that of a hero have me really excited to see just how The Punisher continues his arc towards showing greater signs of heroism -- no matter how flawed that heroism might be.

Are you excited for Marvel's The Punisher? What are you looking forward to seeing the most from the newest and darkest series from Marvel and Netflix? Stay tuned for my thoughts on the entire series following its November 17th release.    


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