More on the end of FrankenCastle and the return of an alive and kicking Punisher!
In “FrankenCastle” #21, the undead era of the Punisher comes to a close with Remender ready to take the adventures of the Punisher in a different direction. “‘FrankenCastle’ wasn’t something that was taken away from me,” Remender said. “I think there was one encounter with the Deadly Dozen [A group of murdered and resurrected super villains that were tricked into going toe-to-toe with the Punisher in the second arc of Remender’s series] that we didn’t have space to do, and that will be shifted to my next Punisher project, ‘In the Blood.’ It made more sense as we broke things down.”
Remender’s five issue “Punisher: In the Blood” miniseries takes place about month after the events of “FrankenCastle” #21. “There’s a short story by Andrea Mutti and me in the back of issue #21 that leads into the ‘In the Blood’ miniseries. It chronicles the time from Frank’s final moments on Monster Island to his return to New York, where I think he’s involved in the current ‘Shadowland’ event storyline,” Remender explained. “When he gets back to New York, Frank realizes that during his absence nobody’s been paying attention to the things he used to monitor. His sort of archenemy, Jigsaw I, Billy Russo, is back. As is Jigsaw II, Stuart Clarke, who Frank himself created in the ‘Punisher War Journal’ series that Matt Fraction and I did. They’ve teamed up, and the Jigsaw brothers have staked a claim in New York.”
“Punisher: In the Blood” will also feature a mysterious supporting character who is destined to have a big impact on the Frank Castle’s life. “In issue #17 of ‘FrankenCastle,’ we saw a mysterious woman assassinate some members of the villainous group known as the Shaolin Scientist Squad,” Remender recalled. “Her identity is going to be a revelation, especially when Frank figures out who she really is.”
When Remender first began his “Punisher” series, he armed his protagonist with an arsenal of fantastic and high tech weapons, and during “In the Blood” Frank Castle will once again be making mayhem with some of the Marvel U’s most dangerous gadgets. “Frank lost a lot of his arsenal, but he’s still got plenty of toys and he’s still employing Henry to develop and buy him certain things. I think Frank needs to have an interesting arsenal beyond just guns and knives to survive and work in the Marvel Universe. As far as I’m concerned, Frank would always be on the lookout for bigger and better weapons. I don’t see Frank stopping that. It’s a classic Punisher story set in the Marvel Universe,” Remender continued. “There’s something for every kind of Punisher fan here, whether you dug ‘FrankenCastle,’ ‘Punisher’ or both . This is the best of both worlds. You’ve got all the craziness of Frank in the Marvel Universe in a very traditional and classic Punisher story.”
For “Punisher: In the Blood,” Remender is collaborating with artist Roland Boschi who brought to life two issues of “FrankenCastle” along with a recent “Punisher MAX” Christmas special with writer Jason Aaron. “Roland is on a tear. I’d work with Roland on anything,” Remender said. ” If somebody wanted me to do ‘The Smurfs’ and Roland was drawing it – I’m in! He’s just one of those guys. What he brings to the page is so magical, it’s just great storytelling – he’s a joy to work with. What he brings to this is a classic Punisher feel with masterful storytelling technique and smart use of heavy black and silhouettes. Part Goran Parlov and part Mike Mignola. His art is like looking at storyboards for a well-made action film. The art tells the story sans text. It’s always a pleasure to work with a true storyteller like Roland.”
Tags: Punisher, Rick Remender