The Punisher is a lot angrier and a lot more incisive than it looks.

The Punisher is easily the most violent Netflix series that Marvel has produced to date. Thousands of bullets are fired, hundreds of ounces blood are spilled, and dozens of people are killed throughout the show’s 13 episodes; it’s as brutal as its titular character, Frank Castle, a man made of equal parts mud, blood, black coffee, and bourbon.

Marvel’s other Netflix heroes have all maintained a distinct boundary between committing violence and killing people; sometimes they’ve explicitly adopted a “no-kill” policy, as is the case with Daredevil. The difference with The Punisher, created by former Hannibal executive producer Steve Lightfoot, is that Frank Castle is a real-deal murderer. Castle sees the world in absolute terms, and if he knows that someone is committing evil, he has no problem ending them.

As a result, The Punisher forces us to philosophically question our own personal relationships with power, abuse, sadism, and terror. The series, drenched in shadows and hazy grays, explores what happens when vigilantism goes unchecked. Fans who have been following Castle’s story from the second season of Daredevil know that he’s killing because his family was killed; The Punisher, through its excessive violence, wants to test whether there’s a limit . It wants to ponder what could happen if everyone who’s ever been wronged started acting like Castle. And it does so in a heavy, bracingly vicious way.

However, in the aftermath of the October mass shooting in Las Vegas that killed more than 50 people and injured hundreds, and the more recent mass shooting at a church in Sutherland, Texas, some of The Punisher‘s action sequences can feel more like deceptively simple approximations of what true depravity and terror look like. Read More Here