I also know the Punisher's more of an anti-hero, and in some stories and according to some heroes, he's a straight up villain. I just think his reasons, his motivation, is second to none. His methods can't be argued against, well the results can't be argued against, I mean why lock up the Rhino for the 100th time, you know he's just going to get out again. But I digress...I'm here to tell you all about the greatest, and by greatest I mean worst, issue of The Punisher ever. Maybe.
I know Marvel and DC, hell comics in general love messing with characters. Retcon-ing storylines, killing characters and bringing them back to life, but has anyone been f'ed with as much as poor Francis Castiglione. First off, they throw him into Vietnam, then after going through that, he comes home only to see his family murdered in front of his eyes. Okay, so we needed that for him to become the Punisher, fine. He kicks ass for a while and then they kill him off. Or he kills himself off if I remember correctly. He comes back as a weirdo angel and that doesn't last long. He's back to being himself for a while again. Now in the last year he gets sliced and diced by Wolverine's son only to be brought back to life as a friggin' Frankenstein...err...Frankencastle monster. (That storyline is actually pretty good)
Anyway, in the middle of all that, this might be the worst thing that they've done to the Punisher.
Before this particular issue Frank had been blackmailed by the Kingpin, thrown in jail, and cut up by Jigsaw. He escaped, but went on the run, Microchip hooked him with some ex-junkie/hooker/plastic surgeon who fixes Frank up. However, the Kingpin is still after Frank so he decides to head to...as he puts it...to "Chi-town."
Really Marvel? Okay maybe he would have called it Chi-town even if he was still white or an angel or whatever. Moving on...
So Frank drives about nineteen hours straight to get to Chicago. The hooker/junkie/doctor gave him some speed if he needed it, but do you think that the Punisher is going to use trucker's speed, hell no, he's too hardcore for that. However, he's not hardcore enough to keep from dozing off and getting pulled over by...Alabama's finest?
Although 1991 was the year Rodney King got beat down, hmm...maybe the writers were trying to make some kind of point?
I think my scanner is also trying to make a point, the most racist parts got edited out, but basically the cop pulls Frank over for swerving and asks him for his ID. Frank doesn't have any so he just keeps quiet, at this point the cops says, and I am not joking:
What's the matter, boy? Cat got your tongue?
Maybe the coon's got his tongue!
Answer me when I'm talkin' at you son!
You know the Punisher isn't going to take that crap from anyone. He gets into a melee that he's not going to win, but as luck would have it
They get the hell out and head to the South Side. Frank passes out for a while, I guess major plastic surgery, driving for nineteen hours, and getting beat down by cops can do that to you. He wakes up, tells Cage that he recognizes him, and then makes him an offer he can't refuse.
The deal is, Frank knows about a stash at some hotel. Full of guns and money. Cage gets the "cash money" and Frank gets the hardware. Cage reluctantly agrees, they battle some El Rukens or El Rubens, depending on who you ask or what page you're on, and they make it to Frank's stash. Problem is that the money is long gone, but the guns are still there. Cage got played and he's not too happy about it. However, he needs some backup cleaning up the 'hood and I guess the A-Team is too busy or whatever so he makes another deal with Castle.
Let's rock. I don't know what else to say, oh notice how there's like duct tape all over where his skull usually is. I'm speechless. I know that I bought this comic when it originally came out so I must have the next issue somewhere. The only reason I read it this week is because it was one of the free comics my dealer gave out on Saturday. Well, I think I've wasted enough of your time but I'll leave you with another doozy from this issue.