Considering how wide the gulf between Marvel’s TV and movie branches has become, it’s surprising that neither Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. nor Netflix’s Defenders have attempted TV solidarity with an earnest crossover. It’s not as easy as it sounds, but there’s mounting evidence that could point toward Jon Bernthal punishing ABC’s Agents sometime in the near future.
You can never keep a good villain down, especially in the Marvel universe (emphasis on “good”), and Vincent D’Onofrio’s Wilson Fisk was last seen itching for payback. So it is, that the Daredevil star claims he knows exactly when and where Kingpin will strike next, but which series might we see it in?
The Punisher remains the most elusive of all Marvel’s Netflix series, as-yet unscheduled and unconfirmed to take any part in The Defenders crossover. Still, Frank Castle’s solo series may yet be moving forward, casting Chronicles of Narnia alum Ben Barnes a mysterious role.
As good as many of the Marvel movies have been — and they’ve been very, very good — perhaps my favorite part of the Marvel Cinematic Universe is its complicated web of secrecy and lies. Each cast member has to be prepared to talk about Marvel movies at a moment’s notice, to speak to the entire design of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, without giving away proprietary information or giving entertainment reporters the wrong kind of soundbite. If Disney were smart, they would launch an Aaron Sorkin-produced television series about the politics of press junkets. I would watch the heck out of that.
Even as Marvel’s Netflix Punisher spinoff may take a backseat to Iron Fist and The Defenders until 2018, fans knew as early as Daredevil Season 2 what Marvel character Frank Castle might seek out next. So it may be, as reports suggest Netflix’s Punisher has begun preliminary casting for a role of Micro-importance.
For as long and Marvel and Netflix have been putting out series, we’ve had to wonder about release strategy. Two per year has remained the norm; first Daredevil and Jessica Jones in 2015, then Daredevil Season 2 and Luke Cage in 2016, and with Marvel now confirming renewal for the former, as well a Punisher spinoff, it seems all else will wait until after The Defenders.
As with Daredevil himself, Jon Bertnthal’s Frank Castle didn’t properly adopt the mantle of The Punisher until late in Season 2, but might the character change his ways in time for the confirmed spinoff? Bernthal himself says the Frank Castle we followed through Daredevil was very much not “The Punisher” as fans know him, though that could certainly change.
It didn’t take for the hype of Jon Bernthal’s Punisher to generate talk of his own Daredevil spinoff, though Marvel and Netflix were quick to keep expectations down, even as Season 2 clearly set the character up for his own adventure. Now, Frank Castle’s war journal is officially open, as Marvel confirms a spinoff, showrunner and all.
The Punisher hasn’t been this popular since his early nineties days of stealing jet-skis and kissing them goodbye, thanks to Jon Bernthal’s nuanced portrayal of Frank Castle in Netflix’s Daredevil. Next month sees the return of The Punisher with a brand new ongoing by Becky Cloonan and Steve Dillon that sees Frank as both the hunter and the hunted after a botched drug deal sends the DEA after Castle.
Marvel’s Daredevil returns his horned brand of vigilante justice to Hell’s Kitchen as early as this Friday, introducing MCU takes on The Punisher and Elektra Natchios for Season 2. We’ve already touted Marvel’s most explosive season yet, but before your own binge, get answers to some of Daredevil Season 2's most burning questions with our spoilery FAQ review of the first seven episodes!