A new fan poster envisions a potential MCU return for Jon Bernthal’s Frank Castle in a Disney+ The Punisher series. The actor first took on the Marvel Comics violent vigilante role in Netflix’s Daredevil Season 2. Bernthal later portrayed the character across two seasons of his own series.
Making his first appearance in Daredevil season 2, episode 1, “Bang,” in 2016, Bernthal’s Frank Castle made his debut in Marvel’s Netflix series as a violent vigilante on a quest for revenge against the criminals of New York following the deaths of his family. Coming to blows with Charlie Cox’s Daredevil, the pair would eventually reach an understanding and join forces against the ninjas of The Hand towards the end of the season. Bernthal’s Punisher would soon receive his own series, where his past would lead to Castle taking up arms once more. While Marvel and Netflix’s partnership concluded in 2019, Daredevil: Born Again was confirmed to be in development for Disney+ as part of Phase 5 of the MCU at San Diego Comic-Con. Cox and Vincent D’Onofrio are set to reprise their roles of Matt Murdock and Wilson Fisk, following several smaller appearances in various MCU projects. With Daredevil having made his long-anticipated MCU return, one fn has envisioned a similar return for Bernthal’s Punisher.
Sharing the artwork on his Instagram account, SPDRMNKYXXIII has envisioned how Bernthal’s Punisher could return to the MCU. In his artwork, SPDRMNKYXXIII titled the hypothetical series “Punisher: War Journal,” using the title of the character’s 1988 comic series in a decision inspired by the recently announced Daredevil Disney+ series, which is named after Frank Miller’s 1986 storyline. Bernthal’s portrait collages the anti-hero’s iconic skull emblem in the artwork to create a foreboding teaser image. Check out SPDRMNKYXXIII’s artwork below.
Marvel’s Netflix series was added to Disney+ in March 2022, reuniting The Punisher and other titles with other pieces of media from Marvel’s extensive library of television and film projects. Before Disney added them to the streaming service, The Punisher, Daredevil, Jessica Jones, Luke Cage, Iron Fist, and The Defenders had been removed from Netflix, making them unavailable for streaming for a short time. Alongside ABC’s Agents of SHIELD, the addition of Marvel’s Netflix shows was promoted with a short video emphasizing how Disney+ had become the “streaming home of Marvel.”
Alongside Daredevil, Jessica Jones, Luke Cage, and Iron Fist, The Punisher marked some of Marvel’s first major steps into expanding the MCU into television, marking it a fondly remembered project amongst Marvel’s production due to trying to capture the character’s darker tone. As such, fans celebrated the series joining Disney+’s Marvel catalog, with Bernthal reacting to the series’ Disney+ release, as new audiences could once more see Castle’s story for themselves. With Daredevil set to be explored further on Disney+, SPDRMNKYXXIII’s artwork allows Punisher fans to imagine the character becoming a key player in the ongoing MCU narrative.