The tone piece teasers have now fallen away. Yesterday, Netflix issued its first full trailer for the second season of Marvel’s “Daredevil“. The first of at least two full trailers coming our way before the new season arrives, this promo focuses on Frank Castle (Jon Bernthal), better known as The Punisher. Fans have been clamoring for the character’s inclusion in the Marvel Cinematic Universe for years now and soon their wish will be granted.
Looks stellar, right? I know some run a bit cold on the existing season of “Daredevil” and that could still hold true for this run as well. That said, it’s hard to deny that Bernthal appears to be bringing his all to the role of Frank Castle. To date, the character has already appeared three times in live action form. The first came via Mark Goldblatt’s 1989 adaptation starring Dolph Lundgren. That film certainly has its share of issues, but I’ve always taken it the film’s tone and its portrayal of Castle himself. He’s death incarnate within and almost entirely devoid of his soul, aside from a few bright personal moments for him within.
Next came Jonathan Hensleigh’s take in 2004, starring Thomas Jane. There are good moments here and there within that film, but by and large I find it to be the worst of the lot. It just feels too watered down and by-the-numbers. 2008’s Punisher: War Zone, helmed by Lexi Alexander and starring Ray Stevenson, is probably the best of the lot and absolutely nails the tone of the MAX series comics, but isn’t necessarily compatible with what Marvel is trying to do with the MCU both on film and on television. Here’s hoping the showrunners and Bernthal are able to bring their own take while also pulling together the elements that worked in the past in order to give us a definitive Punisher for the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
I’d say that, so far, it looks like they have done just that. Bernthal appears to have taken the character into full-on PTSD territory. Here, Castle looks utterly unhinged, but also dangerously calculating in regards to his “mission”. Matt Murdock’s (Charlie Cox) Catholic guilt appears to be in full swing, with both his friends and himself blaming the existence of Daredevil for the rise of The Punisher. Tossing Castle into the mix is liking throwing a stick of dynamite into an already-volatile batch of combustive chemicals and sparks are sure to fly. The trailer ends of a tease of Elektra (Elodie Yung), who I’m assuming will be the focus of the next trailer that arrives in less than two weeks.
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