After teasing that the sophomore season of Marvel’s The Punisher would be arriving sometime this month, Netflix has finally revealed the premiere date… along with a super
silly serious new promo that explores just how similar Frank Castle (Jon Bernthal) and his frenemy Billy Russo (Ben Barnes) really are:
OK, so the trailer is a little light on plot, but at least it sets the mood! “Someone told me once: Life is just trying not to be lonely,” Frank says at the start of the promo. And even though he looks like he’s alone, spiritually he isn’t since Billy is as broken as he is! IF ONLY THEY COULD GET ALONG. Of course, I suppose that might be hard since Frank is kinda the one that broke Billy… or at least broke his face. But once Billy pulls the bandages off, it’s clear that he’s fine. Maybe not OK, but still FIIIINE AS HELL. And though the trailer also reveals Billy’s new stitched-up mask, apparently the series isn’t going to have him go full Jigsaw (his villainous comic book counterpart).
In an interview with io9, Barnes said that his character never goes by the name “Jigsaw” in the series, and that the decision was made to have his true damage be more internal than external:
We’re talking abut a deeply narcissistic character—in season one—whose mask of appeal in terms of doing his hair and the nice suits and all that kind of stuff has been stripped away from him. It’s about what he sees when he looks in the mirror rather than necessarily what other people see, because we didn’t want [Billy’s story] to be a horror show. It’s something more internal. We don’t refer to the character as Jigsaw in the series, but he very much has a jigsaw puzzle in his brain. It’s not about his face, it’s about the psychological, which is really something we wanted to focus on this season.
As for Frank? It seems his journey this season will be embracing his own identity — and judging by the trailer, that identity is “the one who does the killing.” Though the trailer is clearly focusing on setting up the dynamic between these two characters, the synopsis Netflix also released makes it clear that there will be other stuff going on:
“Former marine-turned-vigilante Frank Castle has been living a quiet life on the road until he suddenly becomes embroiled in the attempted murder of a young girl (Giorgia Whigham). As he is drawn into the mystery surrounding her and those in pursuit of the information she holds, Castle attracts a new target on his back as new and old enemies force him to confront whether he should accept his destiny and embrace a life as the Punisher.”
Marvel’s The Punisher season 2 will premiere on January 18th, and by all indications it’s highly likely that this will be the end of the road for the series as it exists on Netflix, thanks to the unwinding deal between the streaming platform and Marvel’s parent, Disney (and judging by the previous cancellations of Daredevil, Luke Cage, and Iron Fist). And if that is indeed the case, I’m glad the series chose to continue the evolution of Billy Russo, who ended up being an unexpected highlight in the first season. I’m looking forward to seeing him go full-on mean and angry this time around.
Oh hell, who am I kidding? I’m just looking forward to LOOKING at him some more.
Header Image Source: Netflix