Thursday, April 23, 2009

#43: Marvel Universe Punisher

In recent years, there have been two Punisher movies. I have seen them both, and I preferred the more recent one. Similarly, the Marvel Universe line has released two Punisher figures within the first few waves of figures. I did not buy the first one, but I did buy the second one, which I think is the better of the two. They are basically the same figure. The first one has white boots, belt, and gloves, with a different head. The first version's head looked kind of funky. This version has a very determined expression that let's you know Frank Castle is not in the mood to play around. For me, it was the head on the second figure that made it worth picking up. I suppose that the two figures are meant to represent different artists' interpretations of the character, but I'm not into the comics enough to know for sure.

What I like about the Punisher is that he seems so anomalous for a mainstream comic book hero. Amidst all the mutants, science accidents, and cosmic beings, he's just a guy with some guns. One of the cool things about Batman is that he has no superpowers, so he relies on his intelligence, training, and vast fortune. To the extent that the Punisher relies on his training as a soldier and his arsenal, he seems a small step closer to reality.

Really one of the main reasons I wanted a Punisher figure in the first place is because I had one back in the early 90s. The one back then had a pretty cool action feature, you could slide caps (the kind for a cap gun) into his back, then pull the switch and POW! Very appropriate for a guy whose schtick is guns. Do they even make cap guns anymore? They probably wouldn't make a figure with that sort of feature any more these days, but it was cool at the time.

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