"The Punisher Official Movie Adaptation TPB" Three issue comic book adaptation of the Tom Jane Movie, ASM #129, "Welcome Back Frank" #1, and the Marvel Encyclopedia entry on Punisher. There was a period when I liked the 2004 Punisher movie: from about 2004 to around 2004. The cardinal sin of comic movies is spending half the film on the origin story, and Jonathan Hensleigh was an unrepentant transgressor. Before we even get to the Punisher, Frank is in the FBI, he’s undercover as a gay German weapons dealer, there’s a ridiculous beach party family massacre, and some goofy hoodoo shit with a magic Puerto Rican witchdoctor. All of which we get to relive in comics.
Unthankfully, it reads much worse on the page. The pacing is weird, we spend a whole page digging up some buried fake IDs never to see them again, but only two pages for the entire story to wrap in the final shootout (Frank busts in the nightclub, caps Howard and his other son, credits). The Russian fight is a single page. Harry Heck was the best part of the whole movie, but the entire Diner scene is gone, and he’s now a mullet biker in a sedan. But lo, they didn’t forget all the horseshit with the parking tickets and earrings. If you ever wondered what it would be like to watch the movie with all the action scenes edited out, here’s your chance. There were deep core problems with the comic and the film, the story is sweaty ass.
The art is passable, the lettering is bad, in a few places its just calibri font dumped in a wordbubble. Rushed. Sucks. Booty.
You can usually tell when Marvel knows they chucked a turd over the fence in a Punisher collection, because they’ll throw in a copy of ASM #129. At this point ASM #129 has to have more reprints than Uncle John’s Bathroom Reader, but this might be the best color quality of them all. No one’s buying this TPB for one issue of Welcome Back Frank so I’ll leave that one for another review. The 8 page Marvel Knights Encyclopedia entry in the back should be required reading for all future Punisher writers, and neatly recaps the entire history, also tying together the 616 and Max timelines. Really well done character history. Unfortunately, the title story of this book isn’t. Ultra-Booty, Do Not Purchase.