Marvel’s The Punisher
Season 2 Episode 1
Frank just wants to have a drink and listen to some music. He’s on his own and away from the violence that consumed his life. He’s even found someone to spend some time with, but this wouldn’t be the Punisher if Frank’s ideal existence wasn’t ripped away from him.
When a young woman carrying a secret becomes the target of a group of highly trained assassins, Frank has to step in to protect her with a brutal show of force that will cost him everything, especially his quiet life on the road.
One of the best things they could have done to open a new season of The Punisher is exactly what we got in the first episode. Slow things down and give Frank the promise of a new life away from his violent past and memories. Then take those things away by putting Frank in the position where he has to choose to turn away from paradise and walk back into the darkness. This beautifully paced episode does all those things. Even without knowing why he’s back in the fight, Frank jumps back into it seamlessly and takes enough hits throughout to remind the viewer that he’s still human.
Bernthal is perfect as Frank Castle. There are facial expressions and glances that he gives in scenes that let you know he is in the moment, living the truth of this character. In the quiet moments you feel for him and in the intense moments you root and cheer him on. He’s able to portray a fractured soul that could turn into a rampaging beast at any moment. I can’t wait to see how the rest of this season plays out.