The Punisher – Review

Straight up, The Punisher is probably my favourite Marvel Netflix series yet. It’s a thriller-esc, action-oriented drama to put it one way. It’s a massive step above the most recent series, The Defenders, with better characters, cooler set-pieces and an overall better story.

For those who don’t know, The Punisher revolves around Frank Castle, out for vengeance after being labelled a traitor, for crimes against the US. The people who set up were the same people he was working for.

Micro is one of my favourite characters. He’s the only friend Frank has and really comes into his own in the final few episodes.

Throughout the series, we meet Micro, who becomes Frank’s only real ‘friend’. They begin their relationship roughly, with trust being something of a dream. They eventually learn their motivation is not so different. Micro just wants to be reunited with his family, after faking his own death after he dug a little too deep into whatever Frank was involved in. They bicker like old wives and it’s wonderful to see their relationship unfold based on their want for revenge, as well as the truth.

He made his first appearance in Daredevil Season 2, playing the role of a secondary antagonist. He was arguably the best thing about that season.

But that’s not all that’s going on here. The secondary plot would be that of a veteran, who suffers from paranoia and PTSD, who eventually turns to the role of a terrorist. He sees himself as a true patriot and goes on a spree of bombings.

They could have renamed it ‘John Bernthal gets Shot at for 13 Hours’. 

Many criticised the series before it came out, for its glorification of guns. But the secondary plot shows the other side of that. There is a cost to violence and glorifying violence and where it leads is not pretty.

John Bernthal’s performance is excellent, capturing what drives the Punisher through his mannerisms, facial twitches and general body language throughout. It’s incredible to watch him work, from the action scenes to the more toned down talkative bits. Everything feels relevant and there isn’t really anything I can say it did wrong.

A beardy Punisher and his problematic journalist friend.

Plus, Karen Page is in it.

What more could you ask for?