Monday, February 27, 2012

PC POST #20: Vengeance is mine: playing as The Punisher.

By @DorkJustinSaga

As well as seeing their hero in several films, fans of Frank Castle have also had the opportunity to play as their favourite vigilante in several video games that have been released, over several different formats.

The Punisher. 1990. NES.

Developed by Beam Software and released by LJN, the first video game outing for Frank Castle was one of the few NES on-rail shooters, and allowed the player to play as The Punisher as he went to war with several gangs of criminals including gangsters and ninja, and into direct conflict with Jigsaw and The Kingpin.

The game featured six different stages to play through and had an over the shoulder view and was an all out shooter. The player had various types of weapon at his disposal including Uzis, Assault Rifle and Rocket Launcher.

There was also a port of this released for the Nintendo Gameboy in 1991 titled The Punisher: Ultimate Payback and featured Jigsaw replacing The Kingpin as the final boss and also a cameo from Spider-Man.

The Punisher. 1993. Arcade.

This arcade game was developed and released by Capcom; who would later go on to make the highly successful Resident Evil and Devil May Cry series of games. This Punisher game was a side-scrolling beat 'em up, which was all the rage make in the 1990's, and was similar in gameplay to Final Fight and Streets of Rage.

Here you played as The Punisher, as he and Nick Fury (who was a second playable character) set out to kill The Kingpin. This game also featured appearances from Marvel Universe villains Jigsaw, Bushwacker and Bonebreaker as end of level bosses.

There was also a port of this for the Sega Mega Drive which was developed by Sculptured Software and was censored for the  home video game market.

The game was ranked #10 on's list of the greatest superhero games back in 2007:

It was also was ranked #5 on's list of top 5 Marvel Arcade Games:

The Punisher. 2005. Playstation 2 and X-Box.

Probably the most well known of appearance by Frank Castle in video game form, this was developed by Volition, Inc and published by THQ. This was a third-person action game which was based on the Welcome Back, Frank mini-series and the 2004 Punisher film. It also featured the vocal talent of Thomas Jane who reprised his role of Frank Castle.

In this game you played as The Punisher, as he went to war with the Gnucci crime family. Featuring appearances from a whole host of character from the Marvel Universe including Jigsaw, Bushwacker, Bullseye, Iron Man, Black Widow and Matt (Daredevil) Murdock, the game had mixed reviews and was at the center of controversy due to it's use of torture as means of progressing in the game. The interrogation scenes were shown in black and white as a way of limiting the amount of violence seen on screen and in the UK, the BBFC made THQ make further changes to these scenes to enable the game to be released with an 18 certificate.

The Punisher: No Mercy. 2009. Playstation 3.

Released through the PSN store, this was an arena based first-person shooter, much like the Unreal series of video games.

In this game there was a short single-player story, which featured artwork by Mike Deodato Jr, which basically had The Punisher killing an array of bad guys spread over four levels, but it was the multi-player aspect that was the main point of the game. Here the players got to choose from Marvel Universe characters such as Barracuda, Silver Sable, Jigsaw as well as The Punisher himself, and engage in death matches and co op modes all spread over eight arenas.

This got very mixed reviews with some praising the game and others being heavily critical of it, but most agreed that the multi-player mode was easily the best aspect of this game.  It was took down from the PSN store as of 2011.

So there you have it; The Punisher, in all his video gaming glory. Hope you guys had fun reading this article, cause i sure had fun writing it. Take care.

Thursday, February 23, 2012

PC POST #19: Frank Castle's Art Of War: The Punisher's Top 5 Battles

Article by @CAStLEctc on Twitter

Greetings again. This was an idea I've wanted to tackle for far too long, and as of just recently figured out exactly how to put it into words and make it work. I'll be shooting in the dark so to speak, but I've already become somewhat adept at that, so I appreciate your bearing with me.

As a huge Punisher fan and after reading so much of his stories, you get to favor certain aspects, and certain things become familiar and you enjoy them even more so. To be more precise, when Punisher goes against an opponent, you know it's going to get bloody. That's just how he handles things, and who would have it any different? In particular, some of his best battles and fights and have been against the same adversaries. Certain paths tend to get crossed repeatedly, and before you know it you'll see the appearance of a certain foe, and automatically get excited and expect a great fight. The following is a slightly detailed look at my personal five favorite enemy fights that the Punisher almost regularly undergoes.

#5 - Punisher Vs. Spider-Man.

I had to include this one first for obvious reasons. The Punisher came from Spider-Man, his first appearance was actually in Amazing Spider-Man #129. Although since then his appearance has changed somewhat, and his story and attitude has become more defined, the basics are still there. Peter Parker is a friendly neighborhood do-gooder, and Punisher borders between vigilante and villain. Their skirmishes are usually short, and quickly settled. It's either Spider-Man would rather have it settled without a fight, or Punisher honestly just kicks his ass quickly, and goes about his business. Only a few time have I read the spider getting the upperhand, and even in those instances, it's in a this-oughta-teach-you type fashion and not the most exciting. But because of the origin and the history, not to mention the few fights that have had me laughing because of Punisher basically treating Pete Parker like the kid he is, it would have been a crime not to include it on this list.

#4 - Punisher Vs. Bullseye.

I was going to make this a tie between Kingpin and Bullseye but after thinking about it it made more sense to me to include just Bullseye, because he's usually hired by Kingpin anyway, and their fights greatly outnumber Punisher and Kingpin's actual displays of fisticuffs. These are some of the most entertaining for me. I love when Bullseye is written well, and more than not, he is. He's practically a psycho and in admiration of Frank Castle, which makes their battles so bloody and top-notch. Bullseye is a hired assassin who almost never fails a contract hit, and more importantly, never misses. So with his determination to get under Punisher's skin, it just eventually ends up becoming a furious fight to the finish with both of them very well bloodied, but Punisher usually walks away having got the upper hand. Bullseye is also one of his most intelligent opponents, dispersing a vast array of mind games and treacherous traps for Frank, which makes for such entertaining readings.

#3 - Punisher Vs. Daredevil.

These two cross paths so often that there's even been action figure sets and statues in honor of their fights. While Daredevil is the man without fear, that doesn't stop Punisher from unloading a clip into him, or beating the snot out of him. However, these two usually are more even on the win scale, I'd imagine. I've seen an almost equal amount of Punisher defeating Daredevil as I have the opposite. They don't necessarily hate each other, they just are of two different opinions in how to conduct and carry out their own agendas. I do like Daredevil, but a lot of the time I don't favor how he's written and I tend to like his villains and stories more than I actually like him. Out of all the versus battles I've listed here, I'd feel very comfortable saying this match-up is the most hand-to-hand combat friendly. Even when they both start with weapons, before long their usually stripped of them and kicking, punching, choking out one another, or you name it. Seems they'll always have a history of getting at each other, and that's perfectly fine by me.

#2 - Punisher Vs. Wolverine.

This accompanying picture makes me laugh, even right now, haha. Wolverine really hasn't battled Punisher too too much or often, but when they have they've been so spectacular that there automatically instilled in my memory. They just straight go off on one another. It goes Logan will get the better of Frank, then the opposite, until before you know it it's just been a chess game of who can make the other hurt more. The writers absolutely love to deal with the fact that Wolverine can take almost any damage and still survive, so that allows Punisher a no-holds-barred, anything goes philosophy in terms of pain he inflicts. One of my absolute favorite Punisher moments in his entire history is in a particular issue I read where he gets so angry at Logan, trying to finish him, that he drives a damn cement roller over him, haha!! If you see these two together you know eventually you'll be laughing or just sheer amazed at the fury they unleash. Whether it's Logan slashing up Frank, or Frank putting a live grenade in Logan's mouth, there's ALMOST nothing better.

#1 - Punisher Vs. Deadpool.

Notice I said ALMOST nothing better. Well, this is what's better. Actually, it's best in my opinion. If you regularly read Punisher you might have expected this to be my number one. Who else could I legitimately choose for number one? These two have fought too much, all over, with the same result for each: incredibly fun and endlessly entertaining. You almost have to love Wade Wilson, aka Deadpool, when he's joking around and wise cracking as he's getting at Frank Castle's throat. Take the regenerative ability of Wolverine and his fighting skills and add it to a mercenary with a mouth, and you give Pun almost more than he can handle. It's tremendous watching Punisher get so livid at Deadpool's jokes, and it forces him to keep his cool and handle himself correctly while battering Wade around. A majority of the time Deadpool will set up a trap or play possum and Frank will fall for it having to forfeit pain, but that only makes him angrier and angrier. Which is exactly what you don't want Punisher to get. You could fill so many books, heck, you could just have a series based on their fighting and it would be captivating, as is. If you've read any of these particular stories where these two have met, you already know what I'm saying. It's too fun. 

Well anyways, that about sums it up. I hope it was as entertaining as it was to read, as it was for me to write it. Sure, there's a lot of characters I left out, Shotgun, Jigsaw, Elektra, etc; I just felt that these were the creme de la creme, so to speak. Thanks for reading and until next time everyone, take care, and be careful who you piss off!

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

PC POST #18 Punisher Fan Art "CM Punk/Punisher"

By @Peteopolis 

CM Punk is all the rage right now against Chris Brown, and I really dig his wrestling shirt, so I made a quick Punisher mock up!

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

PC POST #17: Punisher Fan Art!

Another great piece of Punisher art from @peteopolis !

Thursday, February 16, 2012

PC POST #16: "Pro's, Con's and the History of the Punisher in film"

By @Castlectc

Aren't movies grand? I mean, who doesn't enjoy a good film now and then? The cinematic silver screen affords us a gateway to escaping from our own realities where we can become immersed in an entertaining story. Some are better than others, and some are just down right laughably bad. Lately, there's been a surge in Hollywood for more and more movies based on comic books, and they're becoming increasingly successful and popular. It's almost getting to where the average Joe will think themselves an expert on Iron Man, just because they've seen the few films with Robert Downey Jr. Personally, I've never seen a Harry Potter film, but I wouldn't exactly consider myself knowledgeable in that realm if I was to see a few of them.

  Skip ahead to the Punisher universe where to date there's been three motion pictures released about him. Such an entertaining entity with endless ways of telling his stories. What follows is just an overview of the good, the bad, and the ugly of Mr. Francis Castiglione, Frank Castle, in film.

  Starting off what seems like centuries ago, in 1989 Artisan Entertainment released the first Punisher movie starring Dolph Lundgren. I've actually read on websites, and seen comments scattered about, claiming this was the best Punisher film, and that Dolph Lundgren was the best to portray the Punisher. It's statements like these that have me shaking my head.


 Actually, I'd consider the opposite true. This is in my humble opinion, the worst of the series. The acting was real bad, like, terrible soap opera bad. The script wasn't really impressive by any standards, and the whole film lacked excitement. Also, all the guns fired had that 80's cap gun pop, and there were so many elements and important traits from the comic that they forgot, or just left out. He never even sports the classic white skull on his chest, how do you not do that? That's like Batman movie without him ever wearing his costume! I could go on and on about things I disliked about this film, and there's a reason why I watched this very little. Maybe I should focus on some of the good factors going for this one. There were some good scenes, and Dolph does have a fighting background and is big enough to pull off a muscular-like Punisher. One of the best scenes in the movie, I don't remember if it was deleted or not, showcases Punisher's knife which has the famous skull on it. Here's a quick clip of one of the better scenes, in an otherwise kind of boring portrayal:

  It's worth owning, and I think the main thing is that people forget how the movie actually was, and remember it to be more impressive than it was. At least they made this film, because it laid the groundwork for the next ones. Having said that, let's move on to the next one in succession, which happens to be my favorite of the series.

 The Punisher starring Thomas Jane was released in 2004, with intermediate success. This one is far and away my personal favorite because it's the only one to have scenes in the movie directly taken from a particular comic. Plus, there's so many impressive scenes. Whether it's the dramatic and captivating scene where his ENTIRE FAMILY is killed on the pier, or him fighting the Russian or battling a foe, there was too much I enjoyed here. Yeah, I know there were some glaring errors. I really wish they wouldn't have included John Travolta, as he was given too much screen time and emphasis, and I don't like how Punisher just finds the skull shirt in the water, but most of what else I could disapprove of is nitpicking. Thomas Jane is the best actor of all three to play the Punisher, and that's not really that arguable when you look at all his acclaim from his award nominations and the diversity of his roles. I don't, however, think he was the best Punisher, just the best Frank Castle, if that makes sense. My favorite scene in this movie is where he's on the ground about to be shot, and he fires the knife mechanism, stabbing his would-be assassin, Harry Heck, which is scene for scene from the Garth Ennis comic.

  This was the short version, the longer one with the quick car chase wouldn't upload for some reason. Anyways, great film, and very little I didn't like. Even though I could of done without Rebecca Romijn's version of the character she played from the comic, and the final scene with a skull formed from cars on fire was a bit over the top, they were small stumbles in an enjoyable film.

  Lastly, there was Punisher: War Zone, with Ray Stevenson in 2008. There was a lot of good, and some bad with this take, I felt. I'd like to give credit to the fact that they included Jigsaw, one of Punisher's antagonists, and the amount of actual bloodshed depicted in this film. Although the actor that played Jigsaw, Dominic West, was atrocious and I disliked him, it was still cool that his character was involved. While none of the three films have been gory enough for my expectations, this one was probably the bloodiest, which is a huge plus. I felt that Ray Stevenson had the most believable portrayal of the actual Punisher, but wasn't a good Frank Castle. My biggest gripe would also be that a majority of the film was just too cheesy. However, I loved that this was the first one to include one of Punisher's only friends, Micro. I feel maybe my expectations were just too high for so long hearing about this flick forthcoming, so I was a bit let down. Still, it's a great imagining, and has some very good redeeming qualities.  

   Looks like that about sums it up, I guess. Damn, now I want to watch them all back to back, realizing I've never done that. Epic fail for a huge Punisher fan. I mean, my rap moniker is CAStLE for crying out loud. Whoops! I thank you for reading this garble, as I love and immensely enjoy writing and putting it all together. Let me know of any disagreements you have, or errors I might have made. Until next time, peoples!

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

PC POST #15: Incredible Hulk/Punisher Crossover Announced

Boy, does Marvel love some Frank Castle these days or what?

It was just announced this afternoon that the "Incredible Hulk" ongoing series by Jason Aaron will guest star huge characters like Punisher, Wolverine and Kraven the Hunter!

Here are some additional details released earlier today:

The Hulk has to "stay angry" starting in May, and he's got Punisher, Wolverine and Kraven the Hunter to help him along. 
The "Stay Angry" arc starts with May's Incredible Hulk #8, from series writer Jason Aaron and his Punishermaxcollaborator Steve Dillon. A different artist will illustrate each part of the five-issue arc, with Pasqual Ferry on board for #9, and the rest to be revealed — though Aaron noted that other than Dillon, it's all artists he hasn't worked with before. 
The Punisher guest stars in #9, with Hulk and Frank Castle up against what Aaron dubbed "whacked-out Mexican drug lords." Wolverine and Kraven show up in future issues."I'm trying to make this the most frenetic and crazy thing I've ever written," Aaron said, comparing it to the Jason Statham-starred Crank movies. 
Aaron said that readers can expect another new status quo for the Hulk as of the "Stay Angry" arc, after Hulk and Bruce Banner have already been through the upheaval of being mysteriously split apart at the start of his run on the series. 
"Incredible Hulk #1 came out with a brand new dynamic for Hulk and Banner, that gets tweaked again with issue #7," Aaron said.

Courtesy of

Post by @neil4LOST , Lead Punisher Contributor

PC POST #14: Exclusive Punisher interview with Greg Rucka: PART 2

This exclusive Punisher interview with Greg Rucka is part 2 out of a 3 part series. Please feel free to provide feedback and enjoy the interview!

By @neil4LOST , Lead Punisher Central Contributor


Neil Byce: How are you feeling about the aspect of Frank’s eyepatch? Frank’s eye and other injuries are healing but it has now been over 100 days since his encounter with the Vulture…are the wounds that Frank is compiling right now going to stay with him through the series to cause him to break down physically?

Greg Rucka: He will recover from the wounds, a majority have healed but not every single one of them. And the next two to three issues that have followed  the 100 days have been within the space of two to three days, at the most. Time has not past significantly enough at this point for the him to be completely healed.

You touched on the reason why I am doing it this way, which is that Frank is human. There are others that can shrug off injury ,that have an incredible array of super-powers ,but Frank is entirely human. It is important, and it’s one of the things that makes him so awesome , and I never want anyone to forget that he is human. Here is a guy that freaks Spider-Man out and Spider-Man can cling to walls. But Frank Castle gives Parker the heebie-jeebies. In the “Omega Effect” coming up , Frank is face to face with Daredevil, he doesn’t back down, he’s not in any way intimidated by him, or by what DD can do to him. That to me is one of the things that makes Frank so cool. He is always entirely human. So when he does get hurt it is important to hurt him like any other human being, not like Wolverine. He will eventually lose the eyepatch. But speaking as someone who has had an eye injury  himself, they do not heal quickly at all. It’s going to linger.

Neil Byce: Now that the “Omega Effect” crossover between Punisher, Avenging Spider-Man and Daredevil has been announced, I have been wondering….in your take on Frank, how is he going to be able to deal with other super-heroes?

Greg Rucka: There is this great line that Mark Waid wrote at the end of Avenging Spider-Man where Spider-Man and Daredevil have turned to Frank and said “I want to do this thing and I want you to help me do it” and Frank says “Give me forty minutes”. Then Daredevil says, “Without killing anybody,” and Frank responds “Give me forty-five”. That is the last line from Frank for that issue and the thing that I loved about it was that for everything that Frank does he has to be tactical. He has to be very smart to survive. He is never going to charge into something blind if he can help it. Every time he has to deal with someone like Daredevil and Spider-Man he has to be asking himself what happens when they try to take me in? They are, however, offering him something he is willing to play their game for.

The other thing about Frank, I think, is that he is a man of his word… up to a point, I think. He will keep his word if he can when he gives it, but he doesn’t give it lightly, ever. Everything he does is because he is on mission. Either it is to promote the mission or it is going to assist the mission. If it doesn’t do any of those things than he doesn’t have the time for it at all.

In issue eight, when Frank is looking at Cole and they are gathering all of the electronics up, he’s looking at her and thinking is she in my way or not? The decision there was that she wasn’t  and then he says, “Stay out of my way.” He does not have a problem with what she is doing because they can work towards a similar agenda.

When Mark and I were first starting to work on the “Omega Effect” crossover Mark wanted to call Rachel Cole Frank’s apprentice and I was like, NO, NO, NO! She isn’t at all. Not only is that an incorrect assessment of who she is but it is also – to me – an  incorrect assessment of who Frank is. Frank has no interest in an assistant. He does not want to be teaching somebody how to do what he does. There is a further implication in that, in that people want to divorce a sense of morality in Frank, but  for my purposes, he knows exactly what he is doing…he is not crazy. This means that he has made a choice and he knows that he has made a horrible choice to live a life that is an immoral life. Why in the world would he want anyone else to do that? Frank wouldn’t approve of this type of life for anyone else but himself. He is not going to create a bunch of Bat-acolytes. There is never going to be a Punisher family in the way that there is a Bat family. The difference there is that both Batman and the Punisher believe 100 percent that what they are doing needs to be done, but Batman believes that he is absolutely right and I don’t think Frank believes he has the moral high ground at all, I don’t think he would argue a moral imperative or right to what he is doing. He knows that he has recast himself as a soldier in a literal war on crime, and in so doing he has absolved himself of the fact that he is committing murder on a gloriously huge scale. But I hate the interpretation of Frank that says that he is crazy, because the second you do that you end up taking away the responsibility for the choices that he has made. I find it far more compelling to think that Frank is making a series of choices that have had an element of sacrifice to them and he can argue that he had no choice in the matter but the fact is that he could stop if he wanted to…but he is not going to. Not ever.

Frank is the revenge story that keeps on going. You cannot argue now that what he is doing is for revenge, it’s not. He is doing it because he feels it needs to be done and somebody’s gotta do it. He may dress it up and say that he is doing it because of what happened with his family but  the people that were responsible died a long time ago. And as I have said in other interviews before, if you are a member of the mafia and you are living anywhere in the New York area you are an idiot! At this point that story is done and he has killed them all. If he hasn’t gotten them all you would expect that they have figured out that at some point he will and they need to get out of town ASAP.

Neil Byce: Do you intend to further shed light on Frank’s past, the stuff that has already been visited and dealt with or do you intend to shed new light on Frank through some of the other more centralized characters in this series?

Greg Rucka: I’m not sure I know anything about Frank that everyone doesn’t already know.. Jason Aaron added the part about Frank and Maria separating in the MAX version and it worked there, but it doesn’t work in the series that I am doing. It works in MAX where you are fraught with issues of self-doubt and guilt. We have to take what we have offered up from Frank at face value, I think. I don’t want to change his motivations so I don’t feel that there is any light that I can shed on his past. The origin works and I don’t need to tinker with it.

We talk often about feature film adaptations and how many bad ones there are. People come along and say that they are going to change this thing about the origin of a character that has been around for sixty, seventy or eighty years. It’s like, well, that is a stupid thing to do. Frank works as he is, and so what I am more interested in is something that comes up in issue 12 where Frank sort of lays thing out in a scene with Cole. He basically says to her, “if you are doing this than this is the way that it works and these are the things that you have given up.” You don’t get to bitch and moan about it…you made the decision and here you are now. Frank made a choice and that choice is now dictating the rest of his entire life. It is all that he is ever going to do until the day he dies. Honestly I think that’s the way it should be. If I came along and I wrote a story where Frank is going to get remarried and he and his new wife are going to live happily ever after I should be booed off the stage and readers wouldn’t believe me, anyway. Readers would take it in and say, “Well that isn’t going to last.”

Frank doesn’t want to be happy. It isn’t about happiness.

Neil Byce: Did the “Omega Effect” collaboration that is coming in April alter any original plans that you had for ‘The Punisher’ series?

Greg Rucka: Ironically enough no…it ends up working in very well. I hadn’t planned for it at exactly this moment in the story, but it works there too. I would have liked to have had it tied a little bit more strongly to the story with the Exchange plot. But that being said, the Exchange fits into it very well. You actually see it begin to tie in at the end of issue 9. It also feeds very well into a different story that we want to tell further down the line.

Check back soon for PART 3 of this interview coming soon to Punisher Central!

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

PC POST #13: A Punisher Valentine's Day!

Happy Valentine's Day from Punisher Central, courtesy of our friend @peteopolis on Twitter!

BTW, How do you think Frank Castle would spend Valentine's Day?

Monday, February 13, 2012

PC POST #12: 5 Reasons Punisher is better than Batman!

"Five Legitimate Reasons Why PUNISHER Is Better Than BATMAN"

First and foremost, I'm just going to speak my mind right now and give you references and opinions, which you may or may not agree with. The explanation is here, and if you have any gripes with it, you can take it up with me personally, or not. I'll still continue to believe in this until the day I'm proven wrong, or lose interest. So here's five quick reasons why the Punisher is better, at least in my eyes, than the Batman.


Nobody ever acknowledges how bitter and beautiful the Punisher's reality is. Frank Castle goes into every war, every battle, every endeavour WANTING TO DIE. The irony is that that mindstate gives him the fearlessness and the fortitude, providing him with the tenacity and bravery that's needed to accomplish the majority of his missions.

Do you understand that? He wants to die; he hasn't cared about living since his family was taken from him and his life ended. The fact that he still exists is a disappointment, and justice for criminals is a meager occupation of his time.


  He wasn't born into riches like Bruce Wayne. He doesn't have every expense at his fingertips and technology and funding isn't at his disposal. Whatever Frank Castle accumulates, he gets from his own worthless skirmishes. He's sustains on his own accord.


 Batman has a countless amount of supporters, from Comissioner Gordon, to the Oracle, to Alfred, to the whole God damn Justice League. Punisher relies on information he hears second hand from the police force, and untrustworthy criminals and miscreants. He gets his hands dirty in the streets, not gathering information in a million dollar fortified fortress, like Batman. The only help Punisher ever accumulates is from his sometimes helper Micro, and forcing information out of other wimpy superheros and villains. Nobody wants to help him, or volunteers their help, as opposed to the caped crusader. He is alone, and will always be alone. He doesn't require help, nor does he need it.


Several times Bruce Wayne will have to make a life or death decision, or have to rescue a family, or save the day; Punisher is realistic and sticks to his own. He views the world as scum; a disgusting, primordial soup of criminals and undesirables, and also believes the majority of humanity is inherently evil and untrustworthy. This realistic view grants him less disappointments and mistakes.

(Sidenote: All this while being just as good a detective and mastermind as Batman.)


This might be one of the most important. Where as Batman seemingly always has to deal with the Joker or his regular villians, because his only option is to put them in the Arkham Asylum, or jail, Punisher, when given any opportunity, will execute any foe, on the spot. Bruce Wayne doesn't believe in killing, or the use of guns. Mr. Frank Castle does, and to say that he's technically advanced in every imaginable weapon, is an understatement. Hence the title, "The Punisher." If you're guilty, your punishment will suffice. If you're guilty, and run into Batman, well, you'll be behind bars.

Anyways, this is just something I felt like posting while I had a spare few minutes. Plus, I never update this damn Blogspot, which is wack. I should do more of these. Moreover, I probably left some stuff out. Oh well..

Thanks to anyone who read.

"Killing is my business, and business is good." - Punisher

Friday, February 10, 2012

PC POST #11: Punisher Poll of the day: PG-13 or R?

Thursday, February 9, 2012

PC POST #10: Exclusive Punisher Central interview with Greg Rucka (Part 1)


By: Neil Byce, Lead Punisher Central contributor

Just Recently I was able to have a great opportunity to chat with the amazing Greg Rucka about his work on 'The Punisher'. Questions for the interview came from various sources that included Punisher Central contributors and fans on Twitter and Facebook. This exclusive interview will be released on Punisher Central in a 3-part series. I hope you enjoy reading Greg's responses as much as I did :)


Neil Byce: Why did you end up in the creative process choosing to have this book be less centered on Frank Castle and instead turn the Punisher into something more mythic?

Greg Rucka: I think the book is entirely about him actually. I just think it is about him in a different way then has traditionally been seen in books past. The traditional approach has been, Frank goes on the hunt, Frank wipes out everybody, Frank continues…. We have seen that before and for me that was a retread. So one of the ways I was able to get into it was that I had to look at him from an exterior viewpoint rather than an interior one. I feel very strongly that this is Frank’s book. And actually in issue eight that just released,I had to rewrite the ending. In the draft of the script it was Frank that had gone into the office and that was my first pass at it. That would have been such a mistake if I had left it that way. I won’t speak for every writer but for myself sometimes I will write something and I will know that it is wrong and I won’t know why but I will feel that it is the wrong choice…and I did that on issue eight.
I was talking to Steve Wacker, my editor, and he said “How does this type of move help Frank?” And that is when I realized exactly what I had done wrong. I allowed myself to be distracted. Rachel does have a story, but Frank’s story is absolutely paramount. I don’t know if the pump-fake worked for everyone and if people read the ending of issue eight wondering what happened…

Neil Byce: I absolutely fell for the pump-fake! I ended up re-reading the ending of issue eight four to five times until I finally caught what took place so for me it totally worked.

Greg Rucka: I had been sending the script in pieces to Marco Checchetto and I emailed him letting him know that we really wanted to trick the reader into thinking that it was Frank going into the office. Marco is an outstanding collaborator and he totally pulled it off!

Neil Byce: When you go through the writing process are you ever concerned that you are going to make a huge mistake and just alienate readers and the Punisher fan-base?

Greg Rucka: Oh yeah! I can’t remember when it was but when it was determined that I was going to be writing this book I had more than one author get in touch with me and say “Be very careful!, Punisher fans are a breed apart”. I said, “Dude, I have written Wonder Woman and Batman”. Fraction, especially, said, “No, no, no… have no idea until you start into Punisher”.

Neil Byce: It does seem like the awareness of Punisher as an iconic persona has exponentially grown over the past few years, even though the fan-base  may be smaller than other more well-known comic book characters.

Greg Rucka: I am aware that there may be a group of Punisher fans out there that may not like the direction that I am taking the series…that may not like the fact that Frank Castle doesn’t say very much. I suspect that this is the same faction that is afraid that Frank and Rachel are going to kiss at some point. That is never gonna happen. It would be an absolute betrayal of everything Frank Castle is. I was offered the job of writing Punisher in really what has been a golden-age for Frank. He has benefited from some great writing in recent history. That is seriously intimidating. Garth Ennis casts a huge shadow. MAX Frank is all but definitive and now Jason has wrapped up his run….these are high marks and as a fellow writer you do not want to screw it up!

This exclusive interview will continue with a part 2 coming to Punisher Central soon!

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

PC POST #9: Punisher Fan Art (Scarface Crossover)

From Punisher fan @Peteopolis on Twitter! He shared this awesome take of Frank Castle as Scarface! What an awesome crossover art concept!

PC POST #8: Q&A: Greg Rucka

Omega Effect Q&A: Greg Rucka

Hi guys, today Marvel has released some Q&A with Greg Rucka about the Omega Effect. I can't wait for this crossover to be released!!

Omega Effect Q&A: Greg Rucka

Continuing our look at the upcoming crossover, the Punisher writer talks Spider-Man, Daredevil and co-conspirator Mark Waid

By Jim Beard
We’re charging up for the onrushing Omega Effect event which spreads out over three Marvel titles—AVENGING SPIDER-MAN #6, DAREDEVIL #11 and THE PUNISHER #10—this April. Mark Waid and Greg Rucka, the two gentlemen responsible for the writing end of the story, find their hands full with Spider-Man, Daredevil and The Punisher scrambling to stop the Marvel Universe’s leading crime organizations from securing the Omega Drive. With the info contained therein, one could blow the lid off of just about every single bit of criminal activity on the planet.
To celebrate the release of Omega Effect, we’re checking in with both writers and asking them a few pointed questions about this titanic team-up and their own writing relationship with each other on the story. We’ve already talked with Mark Waid, so up now: Greg Rucka!

AVENGING SPIDER-MAN #6 cover by Steve McNiven Greg, what’s it like working with a writer like Mark Waid? Why’s he a great person to collaborate with on a project like Omega Effect?

Greg Rucka: Mark is, in my opinion, one of the best writers comics has ever seen. I’m a bad student of the medium and I don’t know a better way to say it. I loved comics but I was never the guy who growing up with them would [say] comics was it. I had a passion for them, loved them, but my depth of knowledge and my experience in reading them is really insignificant compared with so many other people out there in the medium. And there are a lot of people in the medium who came and got into the industry and work in the industry, and these are people who were raised on comics and loved comics. Comics are their religion. To such an extent, that they don’t know anything else.
And that’s a detriment. Your ability to name every single variation of Kryptonite and every first issue in which it appears is a great pop quiz skill, but is not a great writing skill, all      right? So just because you can do that doesn’t mean you know how to write. It doesn’t make you a good writer. The same way you if want to write for movies, you don’t only see movies, you know what I mean? You have to actually pick up books and read them as well.
Mark is one of the very rare examples of somebody who’s love of comics and of the nature of collecting comics, of pursuing them, all of that is wedded with the knowledge and the skill set of being a writer, a teller of stories. That sounds so simple and you would think it is and it’s not. And it’s actually really very hard. So, when I am reading a Mark Waid script—I’ve had the good fortune of reading his scripts off and on over the last decade or so, and watching how his writing and his script style as evolved—[he] never forgets that he’s writing a comic, he never forgets what the purpose of the comic is, he never forgets the visual aspect. He is always in service of the comic story and his skill is remarkable in life. And I think nowhere is more evident than in the current DAREDEVIL. His work on DAREDEVIL right now is so visual if that makes sense. And then when we think about the craft involved, I mean, that book is incredibly dynamic visually. It’s the story of a blind man and you never ever get to forget that Matt is blind. So I think [Mark] has some extraordinary skills.

DAREDEVIL #11 cover by Marcos Martin Okay, that said, how do you see yourself in what you do on PUNISHER?

Greg Rucka: I come from a prose background. I come from short story background and that led me into novels. So, I try to remember my visuals. My scripts tend to always be far more concerned with the emotional movement of a story than with the visual movement of a story [to the extent] of being a detriment. This is something I do try to address.
I’m working on the PUNISHER issue for Omega Effect right now. And I spent all morning working myself into contortions because I’m trying to figure out how to visually get across the information I want to get across rather than just have somebody say it. And I put myself in a hole. I was talking to Mark about this yesterday. The fact is that we set up a book about The Punisher where Frank doesn’t talk a lotso that the means of getting readers up to speed is completely not fair. And if I try to put it there [for Omega Effect], it’s going to be glaring. This is a totally different thing. I spent today trying to doing a lot of “How would Mark do this?” We’re to understand there’s a new person in Frank Castle’s life named Rachel Cole who perhaps defies easy categorization. Mark Waid says she figures into what he calls the “emotional heart” of Omega Effect. What can you tell us about her?

Greg Rucka: One of the things that Mark had said very early on is that, to Matt Murdock, Frank is a lost cause. A lot of what I think Mark is doing is refreshing Daredevil right now; Matt is sort of “Happy Matt,” for lack of a better phrase. He has made an active decision to be happy, I would point out. As opposed to just deciding “Oh all that other bad stuff never happened—no I’ve just decided to ignore it.” So, when faced with Cole, and Rachel and Frank really come together in THE PUNISHER #9, Matt looks at her and thinks, “Well, I screwed up with Frank but maybe I can save this one.” And it provides a very interesting emotional center to what we’re doing here.
THE PUNISHER #10 cover by Marco Checchetto
Rachel’s got a very specific story here. Her arc has a beginning, middle, and end. The book is called THE PUNISHER and people right now, I think, are thinking, well it’s not really about Frank, but Frank is sort of a presence in it. Everything that happens is about Frank because of his effect on everything makes it about him. So, Rachel’s story, her whole story is entirely ruled by her association with Frank and his presence in her life. We asked Mark Waid about how he looked at Spider-Man, Daredevil and the Punisher as characters and the phrase “id, ego and super-ego” came up. Is that how you think of them also?

Greg Rucka: I do not. That’s because I don’t tend to apply Freudian standards to my writing [Laughs]. That’s not to say it’s an incorrect assessment, but it’s not one that I’m terribly interested in. I don’t go there. It’s something Mark himself brought up a couple weeks ago, and I think it’s valid. But, I tend not to approach characters in that sort of archetype. I’m much more interested in them as characters I guess; that’s not demeaning [Mark’s opinion], it’s just [not] my value.
I was talking to [editor Steve] Wacker yesterday about a bit [in the story], and there’s no way to do it because it’s a film bit rather than a comic bit; it really relies on motion. But I really love the idea of how skittish Spider-Man is around Frank. This is all set up at the end of the first issue, and [they say,] “we all have to press each other for X amount of a plan” and for Peter it’s just watching the fuse burn down. It’s only a question of when. It’s not if, it’s when is Frank going to come off the rails on this thing. And being able to sort of play with that and try to show it—I’m still trying to figure out if the visual is there. Speaking of visuals, regular PUNISHER artist Marco Checchetto is providing some incredible continuity on Omega Effect by drawing all three parts of the story.
AVENGING SPIDER-MAN #6 inked preview art by Marco Checchetto

Greg Rucka: He’s amazing. I got pages this morning and they’re just phenomenal. I love working with him and I love how effortlessly he is sort of jumping almost between styles, you know? I mean the AVENGING SPIDER-MAN #6 pages look different than the PUNISHER #10 pages. I don’t have another way to put it. They do look different. And it’s not that it’s a different artist at all, it isn’t, and it’s not that it’s not clearly Marco—there’s something else there. I don’t know how to put it [Laughs]. So you’d say he’s got chameleon ability in his art.

Greg Rucka: Absolutely. And yet it still is unmistakably Marco. I love what he’s doing. I, in all honesty, the more I see from him, the more I love it. I certainly don’t want to undermine anyone else [because] I am consistently fortunate in that I get to work with great artists, but every issue that I don’t get to do with Marco, I kind of find myself saying, “Well, oh, I wanted Marco to draw this.” Does that make sense? That’s not me going, “this other artist can’t draw.” You know? Marco’s story telling is just delightful. I really, really like it. It’s got this dynamic and when you get to write 50 of the Hand swarming up the side of a building and then you get to see Marco draw that, it’s like “Aw, man! That’s awesome! That allows us to segue into Omega Effect’s villains. Looking at the five distinct criminal organizations in the story, do you think they stand at different levels in the Marvel Universe or will they all end up in the same boat at the end of the story?

Greg Rucka: The power is the issue because they’re all holding each other at bay. That’s sort of what starts this off. There has been a stalemate in effect for a certain amount of time and Daredevil knows that isn’t going to last and so he’s going to uncork it. You know, the Exchange, featured in THE PUNISHER, factors into the story and frankly, of all the factions in Omega Effect, they’re the “weakest,” but they’re also acting as brokerage. So, I wouldn’t rate one more than the other; they’re all there to make everybody miserable.
AVENGING SPIDER-MAN #6 inked preview art by Marco Checchetto We’ll wrap this up with same final question we asked Mark: The team-up in comics was once a much stronger “event” in comics—what do you feel is its status with today’s readers?

Greg Rucka: Wow. I don’t know. I suppose there is a marketing value to it. I mean, maybe you’ll pull people over from one book to another, if they’re engaged by the story. But I think part of the nature of a crossover, the abusive crossovers I should say, is that readership has come to believe that actually, they don’t really matter much. There’s a lot of sound and fury and it signifies nothing. How is this going to change anything in the books? And even when we’re told, you know, “Nothing will ever be the same!
I honestly don’t know what it means [now] to the readership. Except maybe they’re probably more fed up. I will say that for what I am doing in THE PUNISHER, [Omega Effect] came along at a perfect time. This is the right story to be telling at this point in the overall story that I want to tell. And this actually sets up stuff that I have planned about 12 issues down the line that will actually bring Matt Murdock back in. And it has Peter Parker as well.
I think the biggest detriment [of a crossover] is that a lot of people will say, “Well, it’s a stunt,” and there have been a lot of stunts in the industry lately. I’m not sure that’s different than 20, 30 years ago, but I do think that there is a sort of stunt fatigue. That said, we’re telling this story because this made sense. This was not simply an issue of “How can we put these three characters together?” and let’s hammer something into place. This is Mark doing the Omega Drive story, and this led us very organically to, “Wow, Frank would really, really, like to get his hands on that and what he could do with that could be pretty impressive.” And then that by definition sort of led to the policy of “Under no circumstances do you give Frank the nuclear launch codes; especially if you are Peter Parker or Matt Murdock.” Because you know what he’s going to do and there is a moral obligation there to not let him.
AVENGING SPIDER-MAN #6 inked preview art by Marco Checchetto It sounds like the best, truest definition of an event.

Greg Rucka: I hope so! I sincerely hope the readers say, “It’s a good story, and I want to read it. I want to know what happens here.” That, more than anything, else is what matters. And that’s the other thing: Mark and I are on the same page about this; we want to tell a good story. I have to say I’m really excited about it and I think it’s going to kick all sorts of tail [Laughs]. It’s been a lot of fun to write, and that’s always awesome.
Omega Effect begins in AVENGING SPIDER-MAN #6, on sale April 11

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Saturday, February 4, 2012

PC POST #7: The Punisher: coming to a small screen near you!

Now i know this isn't exactly what you'd call 'breaking news'; but at the back end of last year, Variety broke the news that Fox and ABC were aiming to bring a version of The Punisher to the small screen. This show would be executive produced by Ed Bernero, who has also acted as executive producer of Criminal Minds and co-creator of Third Watch. According to reports; this version of The Punisher would be NYPD detective Frank Castle, who moonlights as the vigilante known as The Punisher by night. While there's no guarantee that this show will ever see the light of day; it's worth noting that the show does have a put pilot commitment, which means a pilot should be aired at the very least.
You can find Varietys original story at the following link:

So what does the Punisher community think about this? Is the thought of a Punisher whose NOT spurred on by the death of his family cause for concern, or is it an exciting new take on the character? Who would we like to see cast as Frank Castle? Would we like to see any existing characters from the comics brought into the show, or would we like an entirely new cast of characters for The Punisher to interact with?

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

PC POST #6: "The Punisher" No. 8 Review!

(The Dead Winter)

WRITER: Greg Rucka
ARTIST: Marco Checchetto
COLOR ARTIST: Matt Hollingsworth
LETTERS: Joe Caramagna
COVER: Marco Checchetto
EDITOR: Stephen Wacker
PUBLISHER: Dan Buckley

Release Date: Feb 1st, 2012
Published monthly by Marvel Worldwide, INC.

Price – $2.99
(32 Pages, single-issue, color)

INTRODUCTION: (From page 1)

“The One Hundred Days have passed, and the uneasy silence has been broken; the Punisher is back, and the bodies are again stacking up to prove it.

Stephanie Gerard, leader of the Exchange, has turned to her partner in crime, the EX-S.H.I.E.L.D. agent Christian Poulsen, and given him a very simple directive: stop the Punisher once and for all, before the Punisher stops them. For more than solely professional reasons, Poulsen has eagerly set to do her bidding.

Unknown to the Exchange, the Punisher is only one of their problems. Marine Sergeant Rachel Cole, the sole survivor of a massacre that turned her wedding day into a bloodbath and turned her from bride into widow, wants revenge for the injustice done to her. Exploiting her friendship with the reporter Norah Winters, Cole has begun identifying – and eliminating – targets.

It is a trail that leads Cole to upstate New York, where members of the Exchange gathered under the cover of a “business retreat.”

But the Punisher, too, has found his way upstate in pursuit of his quarry….”


Greg Rucka is once again in top form in this issue of ‘The Punisher’. Rucka creates through his story-telling a mysterious Frank Castle that readers can identify with but do not learn much about. In past Punisher titles Frank Castle has been front and center on every page but Rucka has decided to go in a different direction. A clear example of his style is found over the course of the first seven pages where Frank says only one line. Funny enough…. that is the last thing Castle says in the entire issue. Rucka relies on peripheral characters and tells their story as they are related to the overall story-arc and leaves the artwork from Checchetto to tell the infamous story of the Punisher. This process ends up turning each precious word spoken by Frank Castle to be all that much more meaningful.

Rating – “A”


As stated above, Rucka seems to have complete confidence in the style that Checchetto employs to visually move the story forward. There are moments early where the story is being moves completely by the artwork. Mysterious shadows, blood soaked furniture/pavement and a series of dead bodies lay covered over the first few pages. Mood and theme seem to be an important component to the overall feel of what this book is truly about. At first, a reader may think that this style is for just this one issue but it really isn’t. This style has been consistent in every issue so far and seems to reinforce the dark/mysterious direction that it will have from here on out.

Rating – “B +”


Rucka is moving towards what feels as something really “BIG” in the story. It is still a little hard to figure out exactly where it is all going but each issue has provided just enough to keep the reader engaged with both the characters and the movement of the plot. Little by little, details are starting to emerge using references to other characters in the Marvel U. and it is intriguing to try to put the puzzle pieces together as to where it is all headed…. especially with the knowledge that us Punisher fans are aware of with the upcoming “Omega Effect” (April issues of Avenging Spider-man, Daredevil, The Punisher) crossover.

Rating – “B-“


Each character is meticulously crafted by Greg Rucka. Every other character in the title outside of Frank Castle has been fleshed out over the past eight issues. Rucka has created characters that fans can engage with and be interested in. It still amazes me that this is a Punisher title and Frank Castle doesn’t seem to be the main character the majority of the time….. and I am perfectly fine with it. It seems to fit. This issue also begins the further development of two female characters that fans have been wondering about. Stephanie Gerard, leader of the Exchange and Rachel Cole-Alves, a former Marine Sergeant. I am personally wondering just what Punisher fans can expect in the upcoming months as Frank begins to have an informal partnership with a woman that has similar life experiences to himself.

Rating – “A”


Issue No. 8 is a solid entry to this run of the Punisher! It provides readers with a moody atmosphere, a tense standoff, and a trap that seems to be set for both Frank Castle and his new ally. It shows that Rucka has carefully planned out the direction he wants to go in and I am personally excited to see if this run can continue the momentum that it has built up to create one of the best titles on comic book store shelves today!

Rating – “A-“


Reviewed by Neil Byce 
Twitter: @neil4LOST