Punisher: Frankencastle Lives!

Writer Rick Remender tells us all about introducing the world to the monstrous Frankencastle in PUNISHER #11!

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PUNISHER #13 cover by Mike McKone
By Marc Strom

Many have called Frank Castle a monster in the past, but now, they might have just cause.

Marvel's deadliest vigilante finds himself in all-new territory as the monstrous Frankencastle beginning in PUNISHER #11 on November 18, courtesy of writer Rick Remender and artist Tony Moore.

"Frank bit off more than he could chew this year," says Remender, referring to the Punisher's war against Norman Osborn and the Hood. "Which is the great thing about Frank: he's really just a sunny optimist at heart. When he sees a mission that needs doing he goes out to do it. He plans out some way to succeed, no matter the odds and he marches off to battle.

"I think he gave Norman and the Hood a hell of a run as well. However, Frank isn't a super-powered type fly-power-ray puncher; he's a super-crazy-type-soldier. With the kind of thunder he brought down on himself there was only one way for this to end-Frank in a bad place. In PUNISHER #10 we see the Hood take his shot at Frank. In DARK REIGN: THE LIST - PUNISHER #1 Norman takes his. In issue #11...well, whatever is left of him very likely shouldn't be."

The events of the past year will lead directly into the upcoming storyline.

"The new direction was born from what Norman does to Frank's body and what the Hood does to his mind," Remender explains. "Then, when they are done, we drop him down one of the strangest rabbit holes in the [Marvel Universe] and smack dab in the middle of something never before seen happening in the old Morlock tunnels."

"Frankencastle" will also allow Remender to push the character of Frank Castle in directions he's never gone before.

"One of my primary goals coming to the book was to help redefine or refresh Frank's motivations, to question what it is that drives this force of nature after so many years of losing his family," the writer relates. "Frank is a monster on the inside. He damned well has been through enough, so it's not hard to see why, but he's a monster all the same, and the next

PUNISHER #12 cover by Mike McKone
year's worth of stories leans into that. Readers won't believe what Frank does in PUNISHER #10. I think it's a moment that helps to redefine who he is and why he does what he does. That leads in thematically [to] where he's left physically in issue #11."

Given Castle's new status quo, readers can also expect him to face off against a number of new and different threats that he might not normally run into.

"Frank is out of the game," stresses Remender. "Out of the picture and totally 100% broken down. The threats he comes across are actually not directed at him specifically, but at some of the people he finds himself surrounded by."

The Legion of Monsters will play a role in the Punisher's new life, but Remender remained mum as to just how they get involved in this particular story.

"That would be telling," he teases. "It has a lot to do with the particular rabbit hole Frank falls down and what lives down at the end of it."

As Remender begins his second year on the title, he promises that fans can expect a very similar tone and feel to what he's established in the first storylines.

"Similar to this last year's worth of stories, PUNISHER year two will be a character story with a pulpy exterior," the writer vows. "I want to dig into Frank's brain, the stuff the Hood opened up. I want to pull it out and force this single minded monster to look at what it is, what he is, what he does and why. We will be seeing Henry and some of the other players prominently featured in year two for sure."

This storyline reunites Remender with artist Tony Moore, with whom the writer has a longstanding relationship.

"We always talk on the phone for hours and hours like school girls about the current project," shares Remender. "He aids me in the beats and I aid him in the visuals. A personal friendship between the artist and writer is a supremely invaluable component to making something special happen on

PUNISHER #11 cover by Mike McKone
the page. Tony and I have been buddies for about a decade now and have done [hundreds of] pages together; we speak the same language and we like the same stuff.

"We enjoy working together, and when the work is a joy, the books are always well received I find. I don't really write scripts differently for him though. But by the time I write, we've chatted up the story on the phone so much we're both energized and have seen the movie play out in our minds. It's spooky how perfectly he nails the shots, exactly how I see them. Tony also has super ninja chops in the story department; he's got great instincts. He's among the guys I hope to spend my entire career working with. His pages on PUNISHER #11 will make it clear why that is. They will blow the brains out of your head holes."

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8 comments
dgazzuol
dgazzuol

I like that this book is getting turned around in a goofy new way. A guy with a gun is boring in the main Marvel Universe. He works well in MAX books, and that's about it.I like the art by Tony Moore, too. It has a Scottie Young feel to it and breaths a new kind of life into old washed up characters like Morbius.If you are looking for the same old Frank Castle then go Netflix the 1989 Dolph Lundgren classic, "The Punisher.

haven2008
haven2008

[quote@Yldair You know, you people aren't even giving him a chance.[/quote] I don't need to give Ebola a chance to know that I'm probably not going to like it. The thing you're completely ignoring is that they've already tried this once before with the "Purgatory" arc. It was widely considered the lowest point in Punisher history.

striker85
striker85

you do raise a good point, maybe we aren't giving it much of a chance and are being a bit too judgemental about it. it has a chance to turn out to be something entertaining. I know that personally I'm more fearful that Rememnder has just came up with this Fraken Castle idea because of the zombie craze of the last few years (not saying that he is a zombie in the traditional sense but he looks an aweful lot like one.) I'll admit that I haven't been keeping up with the comic as well as I wish I could so his story and build up to it may be (and most likely is) great. only time can tell how this arc will turn out. I love Frank Castle and the idea that he was a non-super powered "hero" in a world of super powered beings, maybe I'll come to love the monster as well.

Yldair
Yldair

You know, you people aren't even giving him a chance. Its like just because its different and in the past Frank was given Angel guns you want to write it off.So far Rememnder hasn't actually done a bad job and hes made it plausible that Frank should use hi-tech weapons. Eventhough Remender is making changes to Frank hes not just doing it on a whim, hes giving deep though as to what makes The Punisher, Punisher and relating the changes to the character, this seems to be totally lost on you guys.Im afraid of change and I guess I don't want to really see him change either but at least give the guy some credit for doing a good job so far and don't write him off.

striker85
striker85

this isn't a "bold new direction" so much as a "we wanted to do something that has nothing to do with our comics namesake." at least that's what it looks like to me. I mean The Punisher becoming a zombie? really?!

GundamAce
GundamAce

somebody must have been high when they came up with this

adamant877
adamant877

Please tell me this storyline ends around the beginning of next month, otherwise... WTF?!