Geek Goggle Reviews: Dark Reign The List Punisher

by Jeff

Brandon Borzelli’s Geek Goggle Reviews

aug090451 Geek Goggle Reviews: Dark Reign The List PunisherDark Reign The List: Punisher #1
Marvel Comics
Remender, Romita Jr, Janson, White

After the events of the Punisher #10 we find Frank to be regrouping in a major way. He’s alienated Henry, left The Hood’s deal to die on the table and is wounded and bloody. Norman Osborn unleashes holy Hell on Frank’s hideout. It fails and he dispatches Daken to kill him old school style.

geekgoggle Geek Goggle Reviews: Dark Reign The List PunisherFrank and Daken battle for a good portion of the comic. Sure, the fight contains some interesting dialogue, but that’s mostly window dressing. It’s a bloody, messy battle. You might wonder how someone with no super powers can kill an assassin that has a mighty healing factor and is virtually indestructible. Well, the obvious guess is that Punisher and Daken fight to a standstill and then something happens to break them apart before a real resolution occurs.

This is where those not interested in spoilers need to stop reading because I am going to spoil this issue in every possible way.

If you are familiar with the next story arc for the Punisher then you know it’s called Frankencastle. That title implies that Frank will have some level of patched up parts that may or may not contain bolts jutting out of his neck. This issue shows you how that comes about.

Daken gives it to the Punisher real good. Not just stab marks, but lost limbs, defacing and decapitation basically. The Punisher goes down like Rocky when he faces Clubber Lang the first time in Rocky III. The Punisher looks completely defenseless and hopeless in this issue.

There is a good reason for the way the Punisher is completely unprepared for the battle. In the previous issue he lost his soul. The man that gets cut to pieces in this issue is simply a husk walking around in the Punisher’s costume. It’s pathetic, and yet, spectacular to watch.

The comic book is a massive success because of the artwork. Romita Jr delivers perhaps his most gruesome work, including most of the Kick Ass issues, to date. I have no idea how a regular Marvel title could be this violent, but it was outstanding. Page after page of clear action coated with blood and guts. The fight simply couldn’t be illustrated any better. The artwork also uses colors perfectly as the shading helps to support the mood of the book as things get worse and worse for Frank.

While I can’t say I am thrilled with the direction the Punisher seems to be taking, it was nice to see a fight actually have a conclusion for a change. What makes this comic work though isn’t the storyline or the direction of the character, but the entertainment within this comic. From a strict entertainment standpoint this comic has an excellent fight, terrific artwork and a fascinating setup to reach the ultimately odd conclusion. I enjoyed this comic book very much and I definitely recommend it.

4 out of 5 geek goggles

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