Since having been made into one of the weirdest comics ever by Rick Remender (I liked Franken-Castle, but everyone seems to have hated it) and then having all of Remender's plots wrapped up in a mini-series, Greg Rucka starts The Punisher series anew with a whole different style. This a Punisher we barely ever see as more than a dark blur of vengeance, who we don't hear the thoughts of, we just see his actions. This is a Punisher that is quite frankly one dark, serious comic that I thought I was only somewhat enjoying until that one scene that sold me on the issue, that single little panel...that eerie smile.
Not to spoil the whole story this issue, but the Punisher has a new police contact--we see how they met in the back-up strip that makes me not feel cheated by this comic's $3.99 price-tag--and there's a big wedding shooting that went down and its a mystery why things turned out the way they did. The comic has an interesting Law and Order type police-procedural style to it and Marco Checchetto turns in some stellar and moody artwork. You rarely see Frank Castle in this comic, but his presence is always felt as a sort of overshadowing figure in what is arguably the comic's main character--the policeman--Walter Bolt's life.
The front of this comic says Frank Castle died with his family, and he is now simply the Punisher. With this new interpreation by Rucka I would agree that is what we are seeing, something dark and evil that is only contained by the fact that it kills other monstrous beings (in its eyes) instead of "good guys". This isn't Frank Castle, a man, who goes out to make the world sane, this is a Punisher that knows the world can't ever be sane, so he might as well take whatever pleasure he can in a mission that will never end. At least, that is what I got from that single panel, that one smile. It's just my way of thinking of things, but it really did make the whole comic for me. Let's focus in on that smile, shall we?
|Man, that is creepy.|
4.5 out of 5 stars.
Hopefully the next issue will be just as strong.