Marvel & Netflix’s The Punisher Recaps by Penny – Episode 5; Gunner


Dinah wakes up in her room at home, remembering the car crash, still covered in bruises. She remembers Frank saving her. She gets dressed and takes a painkiller. Frank and Micro however are arguing over what happened. Frank is pissed that Micro deviated from the plan and rammed Dinah, Micro is pissed Frank let her see him and knows he’s alive. Frank leaves to go see Sarah. Micro grumps. Opening credits.

Frank is fixing Sarah’s headlight while her daughter Leo talks to him about the books she reads. She says they keep her mind off things. Her brother Zach shows up with a new skateboard being a little douchebag to his sister when she asks him where he got it. Leo is taking a shine to Frank, which is pissing Micro off as he watches on camera. Leo thinks Sarah should invite Frank to dinner. Zach is a bitter little asshole. Sarah invites Frank as Leo wants, but Frank tries to politely decline, saying he just fixed what he broke. Leo teases him that he broke it with his face and actually gets a chuckle out of Frank. He relents and agrees to come to dinner. Micro isn’t amused.

Sam and Hernandez, Dinah’s boss, are going over the op trying to figure out what happened. Hernandez says it would’ve taken serious tech to jam Homeland comms. Dinah walks in and Hernandez scolds her for not being at home recovering. She insists she needs to be here helping the investigation, plus her dad gave her that car so she needs to learn who “killed it”.. She asks Sam to give them a moment. Hernandez asks her what she can contribute in the state she’s in. Se says her team won’t respect her if she sits home on her ass and lets them do all the work. He tells her that OAG is going to investigate why this op went wrong and she should be prepared, and it’s clear she hasn’t told anyone about Frank nor seems to have any plans to do so. Hernandez leaves, but not before showing her a photo of the car everyone thinks she crawled out of and tells her that her team thinks she’s a badass. She smirks.

Later in her office, Dinah stares at a photo of Frank receiving a medal, having flashes to him saving her from the car. She lets a call from Billy asking to meet for drinks go to voicemail, looking flustered and annoyed. Then she spots a photo of Karen from Frank’s trial in DD Season 2, and seems to get an idea. Micro meanwhile is watching the video from Khandahar as Frank returns from fixing the headlight. Frank tells him Zack is a little asshole just like Micro. Micro asks Frank who risked their life to get the murder on video. Who knew it was werong with enough conviction to record it? Frank says it was Henderson, the southern bible-quoter guy who was teasing Frank in flashbacks a few episodes ago.

At a CIA training centre, Rawlins, the asshole pencil pusher who ignored Frank’s instincts and sent the unit into an ambush in Khandahar, is giving a speech to trainees about what the CIA does, and what they have to do to do it. He has a scar from where Frank punched him out. It’s a brief scene, and seems to be here just to remind us he exists and he’s a dick. We’ll likely get back to him soon enough, as I imagine he’s neck deep in the conspiracy that killed Frank’s family.

Dinah meets with Karen, who knows about the car crash even though there was no police report. Dinah’s impressed. Karen imagines their jobs aren’t all that different, needing to have all the information. Dinah grills her about Frank, wondering if he ever talked to her about Afghanistan. Karen sticks to the “Frank is dead” story and describes him as a good, honest, honourable man with a code, ho is best left alone. There are undertones in how both actors are playing off of each other here that suggest they each know the other knows Frank is alive but neither wants to play their hand yet.

Sam enters Dinah’s office, and she wants him to look up some names she thinks are connected to Frank and the Khandahar murder. He balks, once again telling her she’s playing with her career by maintaining this obsession. She follows him out of her office and tells him about Frank. At first he mockingly dismisses her and says she should go back home to rest, but once he realizes she’s serious he says she needs to tell the OAG and get ahead of this before bodies drop. She says she’s not going public until she understands what Frank is after. Sam says if the OAG asks him a direct question about whether he knows why the op went south, he won’t lie. He leaves and Dinah looks frustrated.

Rawlins apparently has Dinah’s office bugged, because he’s listening to Sam read off the names she wanted him to look into. Frank meanwhile brings Micro some supplies, while Micro complains about other stuff they need. Karen meets with Frank to tell him about her meeting with Dinah. He tells her he rescued her. She asks if he was responsible for the crash, if Micro is alive, what’s going on. Frank talks about a memory of his son painting a marine on the wall because he needed someone to protect him when Daddy wasn’t there. He admits to respecting Micro for keeping his own family safe. Karen wants him to expose the conspirators instead of kill them, making them heroes. He doesn’t want her in danger. He tells her she can’t change this and leaves.

Dinah and Sam are being grilled seperately by the AOG agent sent to investigate the op failure. In the clutch it turns out Sam DID lie to him about Castle. He tells Dinah he’s giving her a week to get intel on Frank or he’ll go to Hernandez himself, Rawlins meanwhile, is getting a secret medal, (he doesn’t even get to keep it), for all his secret work protecting America. Frank and Micro argue over whether or not Micro should come with him to talk to Henderson. They bond a teeny bit in the van over the old joke that Cerberus means Spotted. Back at the CIA, Rawlins is talking to his boss Marion, who is being promoted to director. She wants him as her Deputy Director. She wants to know before making it official if he has any skeletons that might bite them in the ass. He lies through his teeth and says no.

Frank tells Micro to stay in the van and not contact him unless contacted first. He heads to find henderson’s cabin and spots a tripwire after noticing a flock of birds suddenly vacating the trees. He warily dodges the traps and approaches the cabin, calling out for Henderson. He shouts he just wants to talk. He gets no answer and continues to approach the cabin. Frank examines the cabin and gets an arrow in the shoulder for his troubles. Henderson, AKA Gunner, holds Frank at bowpoint. Frank tells him that the video got his family killed because they thought he made it. Gunner relents. Frank asks if Gunner knows who Agent Orange is, (Rawlins I assume), but Gunner doesn’t know. Frank asks him why he made the video. Gunner tells him about a kid who got shot, and when he went to the morgue to pay respects they were stuffing drugs into the kid’s body to ship back home. Gunner didn’t know who he could trust and made the video.

Suddenly they hear a chopper and Micro contacts Frank to warn him. Rawlins calmly listens on a radio as the wetwok team he’s sent to take out Gunner gets slaughtered by Gunner and Frank. Rawlins all but shits his pants when he sees Frank on one of the helmet cams. Rawlins watches intently as Frank and Gunner have to move, Gunner having been shot and Frank rnning out of ammo. Micro sends up a drone so he can keep Frank informed about where the wetwork soldiers are so he and Gunner can stay one step ahead. Micro guides them through the safest path out, making sure Frank always knows which way the enemy is coming from. Rawlins is fuming at how many soldiers he’s already lost in just 5 minutes, as Frank uses their own guns against them. Gunner kills the last soldier after  Frank tells whoever is watching through the helmet cam they’re next. They leave.

Sarah and the kids are waiting for Frank to show up for dinner, and Leo is heartbroken that he no showed. Sarah is not amused. Back in the woods, Frank is trying to carry Gunner back to Micro, but Gunner is losing a lot of blood. Frank apologizes to Gunner, but Gunner laughs and says he always figured he’d die in these woods anyway. He tells Frank to bury him. Frank tries to help him but Gunner’s breath slows and stops. Frank tries to keep going, but he too is losing blood from the arrow wound. He collapses.

Billy and Dinah are at a bar drinking, talking about their shitty weeks. She wonders what they can do about it. He’s open to suggestions. Cue the awkward sex scene I try desperately to avoid looking at. I’m wincing at her pain noises but she insists it’s fine and urges him to keep going when HE asks if she’s okay. I dunno about any of you but I’M covered head to toe in bruises with cracked ribs? Sex is NOT my first priority.

Micro tracks Frank, finding him bleeding and unconscious. He does his best to drag him back to the van. He checks Frank’s wounds and hightails it out of there with him after hooking him up to an IV to keep him hydrated. Frank wakes up seeing the makeshift triage and tells Micro there might be hope for him yet. End of episode.

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