10 Fun Things You Should Know About THE PUNISHER Before Seeing The New Netflix Series

The Punisher has had some crazy adventures since he made his comic book debut in 1974. Some are spot on and others will leave you scratching your head, so hit the jump and check them out!

Features Opinion
Before The Punisher hits Netflix's online streaming service later this year, we feel there are a few things that you should know about Frank Castle. Some you may know if you are a die hard fan, but others you may have missed!

Check out our top 5 in the video below and get all 10 by hitting "Next" below. Did we miss any? let us know in the usual place!

Did you miss the incredible first trailer? If so, we've included it below. With Metallica's "One" providing the hard and heavy soundtrack, it's sure to get you excited for Frank Castle's solo-outing on Netflix later this year. This may be the single best trailer ever!

Make sure and hit "Next" to check out our 10 fun things you should know about The Punisher before the new Netflix series begins!

10. The Punisher Made A Crossover With Archie

This is easily one of the more odd points on this list. In the comic the Punisher is hunting down a no-good drug dealer named "Red." Things don't go as planned when Castle finds Archie instead, who happens to look a LOT like the villain that he's hunting... poor Archie is held at gunpoint until the Punisher realizes that he's made a mistake and that he isn't Red after all. 

Could you imagine staring down the barrel of Punisher's gun? Hopefully Archie brought an extra pair of pants with him! After the mix-up is taken care of, Archie and the Punisher team up to save Veronica from Red. The one-hit wonder enlisted the help of both Stan Goldberg (Archie Comic) and John Buscema (Punisher) to ink the comic. Pretty awesome if you ask us! 

9. He Was Originally A Spider-Man Villain

Hardcore and semi-hardcore Punisher and Spider-Man fans will know that Frank Castle was originally a Spider-Man villain, but the casual fan may not. The Punisher made his violent debut in The Amazing Spider-Man #129, which was written by Gerry Conway and illustrated by John Romita Sr. & Ross Andru. In the story, Spider-Man is put on the Punisher's s**t list after he was lead to believe that Peter Parker had murdered his gun supplier. You don't mess with a man's guns!

Of course as the story unfolds, the Punisher realizes he's been duped by the Jackel, who actually killed the supplier. Frank then leaves Spider-Man alone to hunt down the Jackel and exact justice upon him. The Amazing Spider-Man #129 is now a sought after collectors item and for a good reason!

8. Frank Was Once African American

Frank Castle faces one of his more bizzarre adventures in 1991's Punisher story titled "The Final Days," written by Mike Baron, Hugh Hayne and Jimmy Pamiotti. In the comic, an imprisoned Castle goes toe-to-toe with Jigsaw. While he manages to escape the prison, he ends up brutally disfigured. Frank turns to a doctor turned drug addict to fix his face. What was one of the side effects of the surgery? Frank is turned Black.

After a run in with the cops for driving while intoxicated Frank pairs up with Luke Cage to kick some villain trash!

7. Franken-Castle!

Would a hero be a hero in comics if he hasn't died at least once and later been brought back to life? Frank Castle is no exception, but he is brought back as the Fraken-Castle! Don't worry, we don't speak of how Frank was brought back as the "Angel Punisher," rather we prefer to talk about the next time the Punisher was miraculously ressurected. 

In the "Dark Reign" storyline Frank Castle goes up against Wolverine's estranged son Daken. The fight doesn't go well for Frank and he's dismembered by Daken. After his defeat Morbius and the Man-Thing reconstruct The Punisher into the "Fraken-Castle."

Franken-Castle then works with other Monstrocities for a time, but is later healed and brought back to his normal justice serving self. 

6. His Birth Name ISN'T "Frank Castle"

Yes, if you follow the Punisher avidly, you most likely know this, but did you know why he changed his name? The blood-thirsty Frank Castle was born as "Francis Castiglione" and joined the army when he was an adult, and later served in Vietnam. 

After serving two tours overseas, he wanted to serve a third, so he changed his name to "Frank Castle". Apparently there was some unfinished business in Vietnam that he needed to take care of. Was is to serve his country, or did he have other intentions? Either way, nothing changed after he was back on American soil. Frank had a lot more killing to do in the name of justice!

5. There Are Two Comic Origins Of His Famous Skull Icon

The Skull symbol the Punisher dons is one of the more well-known hero "logos" out there. The symbol isn't something you want to see in front of you if cross Frank Castle. 

Originally, Frank decides to go with the skull while serving in Vietnam. During the war Frank is taken prisoner while hunting the sniper "The Monkey," whos talents even rivaled franks own. Of course no prison can hold the Punisher and he escapes, but not before painting a skull on a prisoner's chest as a warning to The Monkey. He later defeats the sniper and returns home to the states. He then uses the Skull symbol to remind his enemies of what will to happen to them. 

In Punisher MAX, the skull idea comes to Frank in a dream, which acts as a reminder of the internal torment that Frank is always going through. He later puts the dream that haunts him to good use by spraying the skull on his chest to distract his foes into shooting at it, rather than his face.

Both origin stories are pretty amazing and it's hard to pick one over the other. We'll let you decide which one is the best!

4. The Punisher Was Inspired By The Executioner Novel Series

The inpiration for The Punisher was based on Author Bon Pendleton's Mack Bolan: Executioner novel series. Mack Bolan and Frank Castle have a lot in common. Both are Vietnam war veterans and both had their families killed by the mob. They also love weapons and having an armory at their disposal. 

Pendleton's Mack Bolan: Executioner made its debut six years before the Punisher. What does Pendleton think about Marvel's the Punisher? He didn't seem to0 bent out of shape in an interview with Advance Comics, stating: “I elected many years ago to just let it pass, feeling that there is room for both of us in this industry.” 

3. He Killed The Marvel Universe

One thing we know about the Punisher is that he gets along well with other heroes. Okay, so that's a bunch of crock. Frank Castle takes it a few steps beyond what a normal hero would, but that's why we like him! Castle doesn't play well with others and rubs most heroes the wrong way with his brutal tactics and disregard for the law. 

What could Frank do against earth's mightiest heroes? One famous version has The Punisher taking them all on in "Punisher Kills The Marvel Universe." Gee, I wonder what happens in the comic? In this version, Frank's family is killed when scirmish breaks out between the Avengers and the X-Men. Filled with rage and the thirst for revenge, and maybe a little justice, he begins to kill every last hero and villain in the Marvel comic universe. It didn't matter which side the character belonged to. Justice is served when he kills Daredevil, realizing too late at the very end that Daredevil was actually his good friend Matt Murdock. He takes one last life at the end - his own.

2. The Punisher Teamed Up With Rapper Eminem

Yes, you read that right. Eminem and the Punisher team up for one of those strange "What the &%^$?" Marvel moments. Stay with us here... It gets even wackier! In the comic the Punisher kills Eminem's possy after a big show in Slim Shady's hometown of Detroit. Barracuda, who is big Em fan, shows up and all hell breaks loose. After the hail of gunfire and a few knife fights, Eminem and the Punisher wake up in the artic on Barracuda's boat. Why not the artic right?

It is revealed that the Punisher wasn't there to kill Slim Shady after all. Barracuda was hired by none other than the villainous Parents' Music Council! Don't worry, we don't understand why it was made either.

1. Thomas Jane Was ComicBookMovie's Favorite Punisher Until...

When The Punisher landed in theaters back in 2004 we were quite skeptical about Thomas Jane's ability to portray the hardened ex-military badass that is Frank Castle. Let's be honest, he was too pretty to be The Punisher. Didn't we see him swimming around with sharks in Deep Blue Sea in his last big film prior to 2004's The Punisher? To our surpise, he nailed it and he quickly became "The Punisher" in our eyes.

Thomas Jane being our favorite actor live-action The Punisher ended for two reasons:
  1. There's a new Punisher in town thanks to Marvel and Netflix, and he's an absolute [email protected] Berthal's portrayal of The Punisher absolutely blew us away in the second season of Netflix and Marvel's Daredevil and he has become our live-action favorite for Frank Castle. To say that we're excited for the upcoming The Punisher Netflix series would be an understatement!
  2. The second reason is more personal, but when I mentioned the story to Taylor he said we had to share it with the CBM family and mark it as #1 in our "fun" Punisher list.

    Several years ago we had an odd exchange after a special screening of The Punisher: Dirty Laundry, a Punisher short-film created and starring Jane, that was shown during the 2012 Comic-Con. Someone, who happened to sit next to us during the screening, and shall remain nameless, didn't like the fact that I had posted a written description of the short-film and how much we had liked it. In the end I reluctantly pulled down my descripion and praise for Jane's The Punisher: Dirty Laundry. The funny thing is that they decided to release the short film on YouTube the very next day. Needless to say, we haven't seen a film featuring Thomas Jane, nor re-watched 2004's The Punisher, since. How does that saying go "Don't meet your heroes in person, they'll ony dissapoint you..."?
Here's hoping Netflix 2017's The Punisher will continue his journey as the ultimate badass and that Bernthal will remain our favorite Punisher for a long time to come!

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