Writer: Jason Aaron
Art: Jesús Saiz, Paul Azaceta, Dave Stewart, and VC’s Cory Petit
Publisher: Marvel Comics
Release Date: November 2nd, 2022
As Frank wrestles with devils within and without, Maria Castle finds more and more of her memories returning, including ones of those fateful days when her husband first returned from war in this week’s all new Punisher #7 by Jason Aaron.
Jason Aaron writes one of the most heartfelt and painfully well-written comics that I’ve read in quite some time. From the perspective of Maria, we see the pain, anguish, and constant turmoil Frank dealt with from the war, his life, and the mental misery conflicting with Frank that oozed out into his wife and kids. Punisher #7 takes fans on a historic trip back into Frank’s past from the vantage point of Maria and showcases the hidden elements that have always been under the surface involving Frank.
In essence, Aaron is retconning… everything. Like it or not, these are big, boisterous changes involving the Punisher. Sure, we all knew he was a bit of a wild card. We all knew he was violent and we probably assumed some killing of people that might not have been so… innocent. Nevertheless, I don’t think anyone knew how deranged and disconnected he truly was. I don’t think fans knew how interwoven Frank’s history has always been with the Hand.
However, Aaron has also taken the time to rewrite Frank’s kids and wife. And depending on your take on Aaron’s run and whether or not you are welcoming the change, the Punisher’s origin story just doesn’t seem to match up with this version of the character. It just doesn’t make sense. Aaron’s Frank Castle is so disconnected, murderous, psychotic, and feared. This isn’t a fun-loving husband and father who lost his kids out for vengeance. This version just doesn’t jive with any of the characteristics that readers would anticipate from the Punisher. Nonetheless, this reviewer doesn’t necessarily think that’s a bad thing.
Furthermore, there is no question that this Punisher series is so different than anything else Aaron has written recently. I am so incredibly shocked by Aaron’s emotional intelligence with the character. He writes Frank with this feeling almost as if he’s been there or at least has experienced these feelings before. The sheer emotion from Maria and her perspective alone just screams with such deep sentiment adding so much depth to the story and characters. It’s plain to see that Aaron has thought this story through, has an endgame in sight, and has taken the reader’s thoughts and emotions into light before drumming this Punisher run up.
I couldn’t help but leave The Punisher #7 wildly impressed. This was by far the best issue of the run so far. Punisher #7 was emotionally charged, incredibly heavy, hard to digest, intricate, and completely alter the Punisher and his family… and I loved every minute of it. Heck, I didn’t even talk about any of the Daredevil elements because (even though they were solid moments) paled in comparison to Maria and the emotional rehashing. Jason Aaron is writing something special here people. If you get the chance to pick up the trade to catch up, I would do it. If you’re not reading this series, you’re missing out. And if you’ve been following along so far, don’t wait. Head to your shop now and pick this bad boy up! Let me know what you think, have a great week, and God Bless!