Daredevil/Punisher #3 Writer: Charles Soule Layouts: Mast Artist: Szymon Kudranski Colors: Jim Charalampidis Letters: Clayton Cowles Publisher: Marvel
Comic books historically come out on a monthly basis. Every 4 to 5 weeks an issue for a certain series is published and stacked on the racks of your local shop. Some of course are published bi-weekly and others may take months be released if they’re an indie comic without a scheduled deadline. Now with the advent of digital media, people are able to enjoy the comfort of purchasing and reading their comic books without leaving their home. Marvel has taken advantage of this by creating comics exclusively for the computer screen called, Marvel Infinite Comics. Some of the more successful ones eventually get released in print form and one of which was a crossover between two of the companies premiere street level heroes, Daredevil and the Punisher.
The first issue was released in the beginning of May and the second issue wasn’t released until last week. Then for some reason, after a two month period between issues one and two’s releases, issue three was placed on the shelves only a week after issue two. I’ll stop there, as I don’t won’t this to digress into a rant about release dates, but I felt I needed to at least address it in some mater.
Prosecutor Matt Murdock was faced with a dilemma, his defendant Sergey Antonov can’t get a fair trial in New York. So they decided to transfer him to Texas. What should have been simple routine turned into a chaotic road trip when the Punisher showed up, and he has a different view on justice from Daredevil’s. Antonov’s own goons eventually get involved and various different face-offs are engaged. Issue three picks up with Daredevil and his protege Blindspot in possession of Antonov and are headed towards JFK airport on foot. While the Punisher is cornered by NYPD officers, and they’re tired of his vigilante antics.
Right from the opening panels of the issue, writer Charles Soule dives right into character development. We see Murdock ponder over what to tell his student, asking himself what’s the right thing to say as a teacher in a given moment of morality questioning? He then proceeds to explain Castle’s position and why it’s false. Stating that it’s too simple, that it’s the easy way out. Something that many people would say is true, that the morally right approach to a dilemma is normally the more difficult route.
While Soule has done a fantastic job of capturing the cruel dark tone of Daredevil and the Punisher, it’s nice to see some comedic levity added in this issue. It’s not over the top and it doesn’t take you out of the story, it comes off naturally which is difficult to do when dealing with a story shaded in this kind of atmosphere. Overall, this issue is largely build up, leading to the final chapter of this four issue mini-series. It’s done properly and Soule is still able to display some ideological questions. To add onto that, one intriguing element about this issue that’ll pull in readers investment is seeing the two title characters eventually come to an uneasy alliance towards the end, and it makes perfect sense given the situation they’re put in.
Once again artist Szymon Kudranski executes some superbly tone fitting visuals. Every panel has an atmosphere and vibe of grit and grime, fitting the characters impeccably. However towards the second half of the book, when the villainous Crimson Dynamo segues himself in the mix, the action is very stagnate. There’s no flow to it, making the action lack momentum and throwing the pace of the issue off.
This has turned out to be one of the more engaging mini-series that Marvel has released in recent memory. The third chapter may lack a bit of the intrigue with the ideological battle that was utilized so well in the first two issues. However this is still a solid issue, successfully driving the narrative forward towards the climax. Here’s to hoping that the final installment doesn’t disappoint.
Score: 3.5 out of 5
Review by Eric Bradach
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