Two years ago, Marvel got the film rights back for The Punisher, and fans who remembered the relentless vigilante’s comic book glory days crossed their fingers for a new live-action version of the character that would finally get it right. Though you wouldn’t know it if you dove into Marvel Comics right now, Punisher was once one of the two or three (alongside fellow killers like Wolverine) biggest characters in the Marvel lineup, dominating the ‘80s and '90s with big guns and no mercy. Now, he’s getting a fourth chance at live-action glory.
Marvel announced yesterday that Jon Bernthal, who you might best know for his work as Shane in the early seasons of The Walking Dead, will play Frank “The Punisher” Castle in season two of the hit Netflix series Daredevil. Bernthal’s Castle will arrive in the Hell’s Kitchen neighborhood of New York with the same mission as Matt Murdock: to clean up crime. The problem is his methods are far less humane than Daredevil’s, and that’s bound to lead to clashes between the two vigilantes.
In a range of roles that also includes particularly good work in last year’s Fury, Bernthal’s proven he’s got what it takes to be The Punisher. He’s physically intimidating, capable of being just plain scary with little more than a look, and also able to deliver a startling tough guy vulnerability when the moment calls for it. He’ll be the fourth actor to take on the role after Dolph Lundgren, Thomas Jane, and Ray Stevenson, and he just might end up being the best one.
Daredevil returns in 2016.