Friday, July 20, 2007


Yesterday, I got the third hardcover collection the Punisher MAX series and enjoyed the hell out of it. I had heard a lot of good things about the "Slavers" arc and it delivered. I can't wait for the next hardcover to come out, honestly. One of these every year is fantastic.

But, it got me thinking: has Garth Ennis' mature readers series killed the possibilities of me enjoying the Punisher when he's dealing with superheroes?

For the past few issues of Punisher War Journal, my interest has been lagging. I couldn't quite figure out why and I wonder if it has to do with the fact that after you've read a series where the Punisher slaughters dozens of Viet Cong like Born or burns a man alive at the end of the "Slavers" arc, can you honestly read a series where he designs a shitty Captain America costume and fights supervillain racists?

In the first few issues of War Journal, Frank was juxtaposed against superheroes in a way where they looked like idiots, while he was the only sane man around. But, now that he's put on a mask and a costume, does he come off as just another idiot in a costume? Especially when, at the same time, you've got Ennis' book that has just as many goofy, funny moments, but is situated in a world where Frank Castle seems to make a whole lot more sense?

Something that occurred to me yesterday. I wonder, does anyone who's read both series find the same thing happening?